A House Republican threatened to pull funding from NPR, a taxpayer-subsidized media organization, after it announced it would not cover recent allegations made against Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and his son Hunter.
NPR released a statement this week calling reports about Hunter Biden’s alleged laptop “pure distractions,” and claimed it would be a waste of time to investigate the story further.
— NPR Public Editor (@NPRpubliceditor) OCTOBER 22, 2020
NPR public editor Kelly McBride expanded on this decision and claimed there are “many, many red flags in that New York Post investigation.”
The Post‘s bombshell reports appeared to confirm longstanding allegations about Hunter Biden’s corrupt foreign business deals in places like China and Ukraine.
Moreover, they raised explosive questions about whether his father, while serving as vice president, may have had a financial stake in or played a direct role in Hunter’s influence-peddling operations.
The laptop’s data files also contained photographs that appeared to show illegal drug use and, allegedly, sexual impropriety involving minors.
The FBI is believed to be investigating their veracity after Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani provided the material to Delaware law enforcement on Monday.
Meanwhile, efforts by mainstream media and social media to dismiss and censor the story drew outrage from President Donald Trump’s supporters, who saw it as part of a broader pattern of increasingly brazen and partisan media bias.
McBride echoed left-wing suggestions that Russia was responsible for the story, although Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe has categorically rejected those assertions.
“Intelligence officials warn that Russia has been working overtime to keep the story of Hunter Biden in the spotlight,” McBride said in a statement.
“Even if Russia can’t be positively connected to this information, the story of how Trump associates Steve Bannon and Rudy Giuliani came into a copy of this computer hard drive has not been verified and seems suspect,” McBride continued. “And if that story could be verified, the NY Post did no forensic work to convince consumers that the emails and photos that are the basis for their report have not been altered.”
In response, Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-S.C., sent a letter on Friday to John Lansing, NPR president and CEO, threatening to take congressional action against NPR’s funding.
“Your organization is among a whole host of mainstream media outlets that have proven not to be dedicated to reporting unbiased news to the American people,” Duncan wrote, according to Fox News.
“While other outlets do not receive taxpayer funds, NPR does,” he continued. “Because of such willful neglect, NPR should not receive another cent from the taxpayers.”
Duncan pointed out that not one fact in the New York Post’s report has been debunked or discredited.
“Your organization stated that they would not be reporting on the Biden family’s corrupt business dealings because they find the reporting, emails, text messages, and corroborating witness statements to be a ‘distraction,’” he said.
“Distraction is an interesting word choice since it does not call the Biden news illegitimate or fake,” Duncan continued. “Rather, NPR is fully admitting its legitimacy and is choosing to bow out and exclaim ‘distraction’ since the news is devastating to the Biden campaign and the leftist cause.”
Duncan also reminded NPR that it gladly ran stories about the Steele dossier, which was an unreliable source that proved to be fake.
“The American people see right through the bias,” Duncan wrote.
“They know exactly why organizations like NPR, Google, Twitter, and Facebook are censoring unfavorable news on Joe and Hunter Biden,” he said. “It’s because the Trump Presidency broke your profession and now you have shuttered all credibility.”
He warned that the outlet can’t have it both ways by playing political favorites at taxpayers’ expense.
“You can’t choose to report on the fake Steele dossier and not the real Hunter Biden scandal,” he said. “If you think you can have it both ways, you deserve to operate on your own dime.”
Headline USA’s Ben Sellers contributed to this report.