A major tax break for local media outlets tucked away in Biden’s massive $1.85 trillion infrastructure bill has the potential to basically turn them into leftist propaganda purveyors for the Democratic Party, according to critics.
Dan Gainor, who is the vice president for Free Speech America and Business at the Media Research Center, told Fox Business in an interview the plan is “insanity” and called for strong opposition to it.
“This is insanity. I understand why some on the right support this. The decline of local journalism can hurt communities. But putting it on the federal payroll will only make it worse. Don’t expect reporters to criticize politicians who fund them. And do expect them to write stories that please those politicians,” Gainor said.
“The left has made it clear their goal is to turn local journalism into versions of leftist NPR or PBS. That must be opposed,” he noted.
The payroll tax credit would apply to localized newspapers, television stations, and digital news websites. The reported amount of the break has changed numerous times but, as of this writing, it looks like it is $25,000 per journalist employed by the outlets for the first year and $15,000 for each of them for the following four years. It can be claimed for up to 1,500 journalists that work at the media entity.
Many see this as part of a bailout for the flagging media industry and a way to buy their loyalty so they will parrot what the government wants them to say. The tax break will allegedly cost $1.67 billion over the next ten years, according to Fox News.
Although touted as a break for smaller news outlets, the tax breaks also apply to larger media organizations. Those behemoths could receive as much as $127.5 million over the next five years.
For instance, community newspaper chain Wick Communications, which is located in Sierra Vista, Arizona is in line to receive an estimated $2 million according to Fox Business. And a long list of other media outlets are now holding their hands out in a desperate bid to survive a radically morphed media playing field thanks to the internet and the unpopularity of forced leftist views being spread across reporting outlets.
A number of conservative Republicans are decrying the “bailout.” House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) bluntly called the tax break “a scam.”
“This is Biden and Dems in Congress helping pay the reporters’ salaries who cover for them,” the conservative leader tweeted.
🚨🚨 Dems’ radical spending bill exposed:
Tax credits for journalists.
Make no mistake—this is Biden and Dems in Congress helping pay the reporters’ salaries who cover for them.
Experts say it'll cost American taxpayers $1.67 BILLION over 10 years.
What a scam. pic.twitter.com/DFvpAUwQ3P
— Steve Scalise (@SteveScalise) November 5, 2021
Other Republicans are incensed over the blatant move to control the media as well.
Many in the media say they are leery of taking the funding from the government but they no longer feel they have any other choice. They can either take the funding or go out of business.
“This is only a reluctant response to this fear of the collapse of local news and their business models,” remarked Steven Waldman, who is the president and co-founder of Report for America. “Most journalists start off with a healthy skepticism about the government getting involved and helping journalism. And that’s appropriate.”
“But,” Waldman added, “the reason why this is happening now is just the severity of the crisis.”
That skepticism likely won’t keep media outlets from putting aside their ethics and accepting the lifeline from the government.
One-fourth of the nation’s newspapers have reportedly closed and half of local journalism jobs have disappeared in the past 15 years, according to research from the University of North Carolina, Fox News reported. This would leave approximately 1,800 communities with no local newspaper. Few consumers have seemed to notice except the media outlets themselves.
Republicans in Congress are not the only ones enraged by the handout to the media:
So, in order for Biden to get the news media to do his leftist bidding, he's proposing to give a massive TAX BREAK to local media as part of a $1.85 TRILLION reconciliation being considered by Congress!! Have these Democrats no shame at all??? @newsmax @BreitbartNews
— Eve Watkins (@EveWatkins15) November 15, 2021
President Ponzi Scheme tells you everyone should pay their fair share as he conveniently slides in a giant tax break in his BS bill for media outlets. Are you starting to see how this works now?
— The Nasty Italian🍷🇺🇸 🇮🇹 (@sayitnspinit) November 8, 2021
Surely the $50,000.00 tax break in Biden's bill will not influence media
Why News Is Not the Truth. The US press like US govt is a corrupt and troubled institution It fails to do what it claims to do, what it should do, what society expects it to do.https://t.co/oRb0N1gKtD
— Lee Susan (@LeeLee54689633) November 6, 2021
FACT :The media is getting a HUGE tax break from the government to comply with their narrative
Yup the media is selling out the people for money
— 🌸roo_mint (@roo_mint) November 12, 2021
$12,500 bonus for every employee of all the media organizations. Think we got fucked again.
— rayann (@rayann17118732) November 7, 2021
Is that the payback for those who helped destroy Trump?
— Jan (@JanMAGA2024) November 7, 2021
CNN and MSNBC are State Media…so they should be paid…..sarcasm of course…
— Mark Farrington (@MarkFar72216363) November 7, 2021
Special interest alert: In the bill @NMalliotakis voted for is an over $1 billion tax break for Big Media coming out of our money!!!
— 🇺🇸💯mikew73187🇺🇸💯 (@mww73187) November 7, 2021
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