National Public Radio’s (NPR) announced Thursday that it won’t report on the Hunter Biden story, because it doesn’t want to waste listeners’ and readers’ time on “stories that are really not stories.”
Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee reacted Thursday, tweeting, “Defund NPR.”
“Why haven't you seen any stories from NPR about the NY Post's Hunter Biden story?” NPR tweeted.
“We don’t want to waste our time on stories that are really not stories, and we don’t want to waste the listeners’ and readers’ time on stories that are just pure distractions,” Terence Samuels, NPR’s managing editor for news, said in a statement about news on the NY Post Hunter Biden story.
NPR’s tweet linked to its newsletter NPR Public Editor, which included a question from someone asking why NPR “has apparently not reported on the Joe Biden, Hunter Biden story in the last week or so that Joe did know about Hunter's business connections in Europe that Joe had previously denied having knowledge?”
Kelly McBride explained:
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.
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.
“NPR is an independent, nonprofit media organization that was founded on a mission to create a more informed public,” according to its website.
The website also notes that NPR receives federal funds:
“Federal funding is essential to public radio's service to the American public. Its continuation is critical for both stations and program producers, including NPR.
Public radio stations receive annual grants directly from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) that make up an important part of a diverse revenue mix that includes listener support, corporate sponsorship and grants. Stations, in turn, draw on this mix of public and privately sourced revenue to pay NPR and other public radio producers for their programming.