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Tipsheet

Will Taxpayer-Funded NPR Face Accountability for Its Handling of the Hunter Biden Laptop Story?

AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File

After The New York Times finally got around to confirming the Hunter Biden laptop story this week (as covered by Katie here), there are a lot of Democrats (including Biden Press Secretary Jen Psaki) and mainstream media outlets finding their faces covered in egg. 

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Nearly every piece on the topic from mainstream outlets focused on amplifying the debunked assertion that the story was merely Russian disinformation. Some outlets, including taxpayer-funded National Public Radio, went a step further by mocking the now-100 percent chance that the laptop from hell was real. And they bragged about the cover they provided for Hunter Biden, Joe Biden, and Democrats just before the 2020 election in their "news"letter (news in scare quotes before it wasn't news, it was pro-Biden propaganda).

"Why haven't you seen any stories from NPR about the NY Post's Hunter Biden story?" NPR tweeted in October 2020. The obvious answer: Because NPR was going along with the Democrat-approved narrative that there was no there, there. 

Let's take a walk down memory lane to see just how certain NPR wanted to sound that their hero, Joe Biden, had zero baggage and definitely had nothing to do with his shady son's questionable business dealings:

There are many, many red flags in that New York Post investigation. NPR Media Correspondent David Folkenflik detailed most of them here. Intelligence officials warn that Russia has been working overtime to keep the story of Hunter Biden in the spotlight. 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. 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.

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Ah, the "many, many red flags" / "seems suspect" explanation. Pretty rich for NPR — which again botched a story and reported literally fake news about the Supreme Court's COVID protocol in order to attack conservative justices. Undermining The New York Post for not conducting forensic work while also going to print with stories about SCOTUS that are unsourced and uncorroborated is...peak NPR.

Back to NPR's explanation for not covering Hunter Biden's laptop:

 But the biggest reason you haven’t heard much on NPR about the Post story is that the assertions don’t amount to much.

“We don't want to waste our time on stories that are not really stories, and we don't want to waste the listeners’ and readers’ time on stories that are just pure distractions,” NPR Managing Editor for News Terence Samuel told me. “And quite frankly, that's where we ended up, this was … a politically driven event and we decided to treat it that way.”

The handful of stories that NPR has produced about the NY Post investigation have been limited to how Facebook and Twitter are restricting distribution of the story or how families of those seeking treatment for addiction are impacted by the portrayal of Hunter Biden's struggle.

"Don't amount to much?" Really? Really. What part of "ten percent for the big guy" aka Joe Biden the now-President of the United States — not to mention the rest of the contents on Hunter's laptop — seems like it doesn't amount to much just days before the 2020 presidential election? The decision of whether a story contains assertions that amount to anything should be up to the reader, but we already knew NPR doesn't think much of its audience or taxpayer funders.

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Will NPR face accountability? It's hardly even worth asking. Of course they won't. Just as NPR botched its SCOTUS story and suffered little if any consequence, so too will they likely skate by even after being caught burying a story for the sake of protecting their preferred presidential candidate. If anyone in Congress is building a case to defund NPR, though, their handling of Hunter Biden's laptop from hell makes for a great example of why taxpayer funded partisan "journalism" is a junk investment. 

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