The Daily Beast just published a poorly researched hit job on this site under the guise of an investigative story. And it is more than just an inaccurate, unsupported attack piece. The Daily Beast provides a forum for Tad Devine, Bernie Sanders’s top aide, to slander the site, its owners and staff without an iota of evidence to back up his insults.
Neither Devine nor The Daily Beast can point to a single factual error or inaccuracy in BNR’s reporting.
The title of the Daily Beast story suggests that the site’s owners/editors are “hit men for Hillary” simply because of their years of strong advocacy for the first woman president.
Got that? If you support Hillary and criticize her opponents, then you’re a “hit man.” But all the media outlets that attack Hillary relentlessly do it for valid reasons.
The Daily Beast story is rife with over-inflated rhetoric and fact-free assertions. Here are a few examples:
“Is a propaganda arm of Hillary Clinton’s presidential juggernaut masquerading as an independent news and opinion site?”
We publicly endorsed Hillary, which the article concedes, and we cover a wide range of issues from the GOP to racial justice to the environment, so where’s the “masquerading?” And what is the evidence for the term “propaganda?” None.
“These days the blog celebrates all things Clinton and relentlessly blames the socialist senator from Vermont for nearly every misguided, corrupt, hypocritical or wretched thing in American democracy—though it does admit, from time to time, that he’s no Donald Trump.”
The Daily Beast provides no evidence to support that wild claim. We have not “blamed” Bernie Sanders – rather, we’ve questioned his continued use of the Wall Street dog whistle to impugn Hillary’s integrity and we’ve called out factual instances where his campaign promises are undercut by his votes or actions.
Even before Sunday night’s CNN-sponsored Democratic debate had ended, BNR’s lead story was accusing Sanders of rudeness and sexism under the headline “Women React to Bernie Sanders Telling Hillary ‘I’m Talking’.”
BNR made no accusation of sexism and simply linked to women’s responses on Twitter. In fact, had the Daily Beast taken the time to read back a couple of articles, BNR just praised Bernie for calling out sexism last summer.
BNR formally endorsed Clinton for president and subsequent articles carried headlines such as “Why does Bernie Sanders keep denigrating Hillary’s supporters?,” “Why did Bernie Sanders sponsor a bill to dump nuclear waste on a low-income Latino community,” “NASTY HIT: top Sanders adviser questions Hillary’s capacity to appoint Scalia replacement,” “Bernie’s dark side: the reckless war on Hillary’s integrity,” and “Bernie Sanders gets gender equality painfully wrong.”
We stand by those articles, which The Daily Beast lists as a series of headlines without quoting a single word from the actual content of the pieces.
We are proud of our strong support for the most qualified presidential candidate in the 2016 race. (Indeed, Hillary Clinton is one of the most prepared candidates ever to run for the presidency.)
We are proud to stand up against the lies and smears directed at Hillary, and we will continue to do so.
We have not attacked Bernie Sanders’s integrity. Quite the opposite: we have repeatedly said we share his values and admire his vision. Our criticisms of Bernie revolve around his campaign’s willingness to assail Hillary’s character, something that harms all Democrats.
We have also questioned Bernie’s electability in the face of a desperate and unhinged GOP that will turn its full fury on the Democratic nominee in the general election. Hillary’s capacity to endure that fury is well-tested.
Tad Devine’s reprehensible quote about BNR being the “pond scum of American politics” demonstrates that BNR’s continued willingness to reject Bernie’s direct shots at Hillary’s honesty is having an effect on his campaign. His claim that “Our approach to most of this is to ignore it, and I suspect that’s all we’ll continue to do,” is directly undermined by his willingness to use the Daily Beast as a vehicle to besmirch BNR.
It is highly unusual for a senior adviser to a Democratic presidential candidate to go after a progressive media outlet in such personal terms. And to do so without any proof to back up his attack.
Flailing at a Democratic media outlet with such venomous language is unbecoming of the Sanders campaign. Has Devine attacked other news organizations for critiquing his candidate?
BNR has been firm in its support of Hillary Clinton and fair — and factual — in its criticism of her opponents. We will not be intimidated by personal insults, even if they come from the top of a major campaign.