SELLERS: MAGA Journos Bum-Rush Media Gatekeepers Like ‘Newcomers’ at the Border


(Ben Sellers, Headline USA) A few weeks ago, I had an interesting exchange on LinkedIn after posting a job listing via the site’s job board for an opening (qualified candidates only, please) with a certain “conservative political news site.”

It stands to reason that this would be the logical place for such a post, but several other members of the group were triggered enough that they felt compelled to denounce the listing as antithetical to the principles of journalism.

One was a freelance writer for Runner’s World magazine. Another was a golf reporter at somewhere equally irrelevant. One, a “gaming editor” who lived in Portland—which is probably a euphemism for “paid Antifa rabble-rouser who also posts reviews on Reddit.” And then there was a retired news-desk editor for our local paper of record, the Charlotte Observer, who insisted that no “self-respecting” journalist would dare apply to such a job and it was little wonder it hadn’t gotten filled yet.

I won’t go through the entire, deeply satisfying, way I tore this last cyberbullying jackass to shreds. Suffice it to say, data from the Federal Election Commission revealed that he had made more than 1,000 donations to the leftist site ActBlue and other Democrat causes. Game over.

After pointing out that his entire career as an “objective” journalist had been a sham, though, I told him I was nonetheless inspired by his words of wisdom to follow suit. Henceforth, like the Charlotte Observer, the Washington Post, the New York Times, CNN and Fox News, Headline USA would declare itself to be entirely neutral and nonpartisan.

This new way of self-identifying wouldn’t change our coverage at all—we would still continue to seek the truth, and to call balls and strikes as we saw them from our particular vantage point—which is, in a way, designed to balance out the warped perspectives at publications like the Observer.

But we would change semantically how we refered to ourselves, I assured him, and we would become wholly sanctimonious should any upstarts who didn’t know how the game was played dare to acknowledge any political leanings or biases they might have.

Still, I wondered why the ad I had listed would provoke such a vicious (albeit ill-fated) attempt to shame me off the platform—especially from someone who fancied himself so tolerant of all points of view.

I could only imagine that such tactics had been effective for this slimeball many a time while pretenting to mentor young journalists.

His M.O.: play the “objectivity” card universally, but always enforce it selectively. A statement sympathetic to conservatives was opinion (and an ignorant, wrongheaded one, at that, I am sure he’d mutter within earshot), while one expressing the equal and opposite view for a radical Marxist—well, that was just good, honest journalism giving voice to the voiceless or some garbage.


Those who have spent years building up this “objectivity” myth and profiting off it not only have lost all sense of self-awareness, they also are deeply threatened by the prospect that anyone whose viewpoint might challenge theirs should get to play the information “gatekeeper.”

I was reminded of this phenomenon yet again on Sunday, after seeing ex-Meet the Press host Chuck Todd attempt a similar style of media lynch-mob on ex-Republican National Committee chair Ronna Romney McDaniel.

The fact is, the melodramatic news cycle spawned by Todd’s attack matters very little to those outside the mainstream media’s ivory tower.

Undoubtedly, McDaniel will be fine wherever she may land—as a lobbyist, consultant or working the motivational speaking circuit. Heck, even George Santos seems to have found gainful means of sustenance via the celebrity greeting platform Cameo, where personalized videos from the disgraced ex-lawmaker costs $350 a pop.

Todd’s meltdown, however, said far more about himself—and, more broadly, about the insular, out-of-touch, self-aggrandizing system that has normalized him as one of its leading professional voices—than it did about Romney.

Indeed, Politico and others quickly set about to give it the spin treatment. Todd “put a glaring spotlight on one of the fundamental flaws embedded in the modern news ecosystem, and cable news in particular: the toxic revolving door between political operatives and mainstream media,” wrote senior media columnist Jack Shafer in a recent colum titled “Why Chuck Todd’s Scorcher Against NBC Matters.”

Much of what followed was an awkward apologia for all of the prior examples in which the leftist media establishment had violated the very ground rules that Todd was laying out as his new red line.

Predictably, it missed the entire point.

Thus, I hereby submit my open response, which I shared already in email form to Shafer, Todd, Meet the Press host Kristen Welker and NBC News President Rebecca Blumenstein. (The attempt to include McDaniel’s NBC email address bounced back…)


Chuck Todd’s diatribe provides clear confirmation, as if any more were needed, of his own bias, hypocrisy, and unwillingness to respect anything but his notoriously extremist views. Hint: If you consider yourself to be the second coming of Tim Russert, yet you find yourself in the company of Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski and Rachel Maddow, you’re doing it wrong.

But of course, the rest of the leftist media echo chamber is following lockstep, including Politico, the publication where Glenn Thrush once got busted for asking the Clinton campaign to fact-check his article drafts. Surprise, surprise.

Let’s be perfectly clear on something: Chuck Todd and all the like have pushed a litany of partisan lies that severely undermined democracy and brought us to the point at which we now find ourselves. Like the boy who cried wolf, they have nobody but themselves to blame for any loss of credibility.

The 2016 attacks on election integrity (in concert, no less, with corrupt intelligence agencies) were the prelude to the 2020 skepticism. And it is pure, unadulterated gaslighting to deny and invalidate the suspicions many have about the irregularities (all well documented and not up for debate) resulting from several blue-state governors brazenly flouting their own election laws in plain sight while colluding inappropriately with outside parties like Mark Zuckerberg to sway the outcome, as acknowledged by Molly Ball’s infamous Time article.

Did they break the law? We don’t know because it wasn’t properly investigated. In case after case, it was instead dismissed on the basis of a lack of standing or other technicalities. Evidence was destroyed before anyone could review it, and those who tried, curiously, found themselves the targets of lawfare attacks.

If the Left and the media had openly recognized these concerns instead of scrambling to push the Big Cover-Up Lie, then perhaps we could all have moved forward accordingly in a civil manner. There would never have been a Jan. 6 uprising, where hundreds of dissidents followed the leftist model of disruption, sometimes violent, in order to exercise their First Amendment rights to voice their disapproval—at least for a few fleeting hours, until one of them was shot in cold blood and President Trump instructed everyone to go home.

Instead, here we have Chuck Todd, the balding, washed-up little weasel, still terrified to allow a dissenting perspective who could (gasp) present the evidence that will expose him as the lying blowhard that he is.

If Chuck Todd were sincerely an election-irregularity denier because of some condition he had that made him clinically blind to the evidence, then that would be on him, but of course we know because of his inconsistency—like that of his many leftist colleagues—in calling out the Democrat party for its flagrant abuses, that when he does so in screaming hysterics at the first sign of a Republican in-kind response, it is nothing more than a steaming pile of BS.

The vast majority of the American public, fortunately, is fully inoculated and immune to this nonsense and sees right through it to the point that performative displays like the one on Sunday are pure comedy.

The irony of all of this is the fact that the leftist media is choosing as its proverbial hill to die on (at least in terms of its credibility and financial-viability) the niece of Mitt Romney. MAGA is literally laughing its asses off at the Trump Derangement Syndrome present over a woman who everyone on the Right assumed was on the verge of making a Michael Steele-style pivot and showing that her election failures during the last several cycles were not by accident.

Feel free to stand behind Ms. McDaniel or kick her to the curb—it’s all the same to Republicans. As long as the clown Chuck Todd is still there, blighting and sullying the Peacock’s good name, no overtures at presenting ideological balance will ever ring persuasive in my ears.

Ben Sellers is the editor of Headline USA. Follow him at