Why Has Fox News Ignored Breitbart's Pigford Story?

Blog ››› ››› ERIC BOEHLERT

Or better yet, there's this question: Why has basically all of the conservative media, including print, online, radio, and television, ignored the Pigford story that Andrew Breitbart's websites have been promoting for going on one year now?

I'm hard-pressed to think of another instance in which a media entity like Breitbart's has invested so much time and energy promoting a single story (his sites have posted more than 100 Pigford-related items in the last year), yet only to see the story receive virtually no pick-up. Anywhere. That's what we've seen with the supposed controversy surrounding the the government's Pigford settlement with black farmers.

I've asked before why Fox News has ignored the story, but I ask it again, because one of the Breitbart bloggers at the center of the Pigford investigation now claims the reason the story has been completely ignored is because there isn't a conservative equivalent to MoveOn.org or Talking Points Memo. In other words, it was a structural problem within the right-wing community that kept the Pigford story from getting out.

From Lee Stranahan:

Here's a quick example of why this matters . The absence of a "nonliberal MoveOn.org" came up as a practical issue with me while working on the Pigford "black farmers' story. While working on my documentary, I shot interviews with farmers who met with Georgia Democratic Congressman Sanford Bishop and told him about corruption in the Pigford settlement, only to have him respond that they should keep quiet about the corruption because if Pigford were investigated "they'll shut this thing down." Bishop has admitted to this conversation on the record and said that is not his job to monitor corruption.

If we had this sort of solid evidence of a Republican congressman knowingly allowing fraud to continue and it had broken in someplace like Talking Points Memo, it would quickly turned into an action item by group like MoveOn then made national headlines and that politician likely would've been run out of town on a rail.

As it was we broke this information and released videos. We are able to get some press in Georgia and to get any number of people who read the story on the right to grumble about what a crook Sanford Bishop was – but with no real organizational machinery to get the story out and most importantly to get people to take action, the significant story withered on the vine.

I think there's a simpler explanation as to why Pigford has been uniformly ignored by media outlets on the left, right and the center: The story's not compelling and Breitbart's reporting isn't trusted.

UPDATED: According to a Nexis search of Fox News transcripts over the last twelve months, here's the total number of times Glenn Beck, Bill O'Reilly, Sean Hannity and Greta Van Susteren have mentioned "Pigford" on the air: 0.

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Andrew Breitbart, Pigford, Lee Stranahan
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