AP wire service partners with outlets funded by liberals to launch 'nonpartisan' news initiative

The outlets include CalMatters, Honolulu Civil Beat, Montana Free Press, Nebraska Journalism Trust and South Dakota News Watch, all of whom are heavily supported by left-leaning billionaires who are also major donors to the Biden campaign.

Published: May 31, 2024 11:01pm

Updated: June 1, 2024 6:42am

The Associated Press announced that it would partner with five other outlets to create a nonpartisan news initiative prior to the upcoming 2024 election. These outlets appear to be predominantly, if not exclusively backed by liberal donors. 

The AP announced Tuesday that it would be partnering with five local outlets in order to "expand the reach of local news ahead of the 2024 U.S. presidential election and increasing access to AP’s nonpartisan journalism, especially in communities that may have limited access to fact-based news."

“As local coverage shrinks, content sharing agreements with other mission-driven news organizations across the U.S. are more important than ever,” said AP U.S. News Director Josh Hoffner. “These agreements are exciting opportunities for AP journalism to reach new audiences in an election year and simultaneously bolster the AP news report from states that can sometimes be overlooked.”

The outlets include CalMattersHonolulu Civil Beat, Montana Free Press, The Nebraska Journalism Trust and South Dakota News Watch

"Each organization will share AP journalism with its audience," AP said in its announcement. "AP will distribute stories from each outlet to the news agency’s members and customers, supplementing AP’s existing coverage of California, Hawaii, Montana, Nebraska and South Dakota."

The CEO and Publisher of Honolulu Civil Beat is Pierre Omidyar who made billions as one of the creators of eBay. Omidyar donated considerable funds to create The Intercept, and in 2016 personally donated "$100,000 to NeverTrump PAC, a political action committee dedicated to making sure New York businessman Donald Trump never becomes president of the United States," according to Honolulu Civil Beat.

Another concern is the Honolulu Civil Beat often coordinates with States Newsroom, which is a network of local news outlets that is funded by left-leaning sources, the AP has stated. One of the States Newsroom's subsidiary outlets is called The Tennessee Lookout, which will be led by Holly McCall, a former reporter who has recently worked in Democratic Party politics, including for Mike Bloomberg’s Tennessee team in his failed presidential bid, according to the AP.

CalMatters is a nonprofit news organization that was cofounded by Austin resident Simone Coxe who personally donated $100,000 to a pro-Joe Biden super PAC back in 2020, according to a report from The Washington Free Beacon. Coxe and her husband Tench collectively donated $2 million to Beto O'Rourke's 2022 presidential campaign, the Texas Tribune reported.

Coxe reportedly also has a family charity that donates to the Nebraska Journalism Trust and she has personally donated $160,000 to the Montana Free Press.

Campaign records show that other rich donors such as John Doerr and Google cofounder Eric Schmidt's foundation have not only donated to CalMatters, but to political committees of Biden's. 

Former Enron executive John Arnold, who is well known for funding criminal justice reform initiatives, has donated money to three of the five outlets through his firm. 

The Associated Press has been critiqued lately for showing left-wing bias. Back in January, the outlet drew criticism for a headline about the resignation of Harvard President Claudine Gay that concluded her decision was the result of a "conservative weapon."

The Associated Press has not responded to requests for comment at this time.

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