The Spectacle Blog

Media Matters Caught on 
Campaign Contributions: 
Hypocrisy on Hannity, Fox

By on 10.7.10 | 12:40PM

In a stunning display of Liberal Media brazenness, Media Matters, the left-wing media organization ginned up by George Soros and currently keeping its donors a secret, has attacked the ethics of both Fox News and Sean Hannity for Hannity's campaign contributions to a childhood friend.

All this without acknowledging that David Brock, the CEO of Media Matters, has made repeated campaign contributions to liberal candidates including: Joe Sestak, the Pennsylvania Democrat running for the U.S. Senate; Al Franken, elected in 2008 as the Democrat Senator from Minnesota; and the presidential campaign of Hillary Rodham Clinton.

The revelation came to light as Media Matters accused Fox News of having a "continuing ethics problem." This so-called "problem" is supposedly symbolized by Hannity's arranging a Newt Gingrich fundraiser for John Gomez, a Long Island GOP congressional candidate who is also a childhood friend of Hannity's. Both Hannity and his wife have made financial contributions to the Gomez campaign.

Having now raised the question of whether contributions from a Fox media figure (Hannity, it should be noted, is a commentator, not a news anchor) are unethical, the media figures running Media Matters have fallen silent when it comes both to their own shadowy donors and the campaign contributions of Brock, listed at Media Matters as the news media institution's CEO. Who funds Media Matters? Billionaires? MSNBC anchors? New York Times anchors? The now-exposed clique of liberal journalists exposed in the "Journolist" scandal? That, as the childhood taunt went, is for Media Matters to know and the rest of us not to find out. So much for transparency.

In another troubling turn of events for Media Matters, Hannity's fellow talk radio star Mark Levin, who is also the head of the Landmark Legal Foundation, has raised the question as to whether Media Matters is acting not simply unethically but criminally. 

Says Levin:

Media Matters is a 501(c)(3) tax exempt non-profit organization. As a matter of law, it must not use its funds in any political manner. Yet, if you examine the Media Matters website, the only causes it promotes are whatever Obama and the Democrats are promoting. It is a propaganda outlet for the Democrats. That's the sole purpose. And it attacks any person on TV and radio who disagrees with Obama and the Democrats. It is not advocating a particular principle, say, free speech. Media Matters' entire existence is political. And I'm confident it works closely with Democrat organizations, PACs, and officials.

So, while it attempts to intimidate and silence others, Media Matters uses tax exempt funds to promote Obama and the Democrats, and it uses the Internal Revenue Code to conceal the identity of its donors.

Levin goes on to accuse Media Matters of using "tax exempt funds to promote Obama and the Democrats" while using "the Internal Revenue Code to conceal the identity of its donors." He calls for transparency saying:

The IRS needs to audit them to determine the extent of its evasions. It's unlawful to use tax exempt funds for political purposes and this outfit needs to be flushed out of the shadows, exposed for what it is, and subjected to all fines and penalties associated with deceiving the IRS.

The problem here is obvious.

Neither Fox News nor Sean Hannity have any ethics problem, let alone a "continuing ethics problem."

Media Matters, on the other hand, which refuses to bring its wealthy donors out of the shadows and into the sunlight -- has awkwardly turned the spotlight on a genuine ethics problem of its own. A supposed non-profit that may be, in Levin's words, actively "deceiving the IRS" has unethically criticized Hannity for behavior which its own CEO, Brock, has routinely engaged in himself.

Double-standard? Hypocrisy? At Media Matters?

Now there's a media matter to discuss.

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