From the moment a state House GOP press list was published on Friday denoting “friendly” and “unfriendly” media outlets, we knew there would be some priceless reactions on Twitter from the esteemed members of Colorado’s press corps.
Needless to say they did not disappoint.
Kyle Clark tweeted he was honored Republicans compared 9News to the shadiest liberal “news” website in the state, Colorado Newsline.
Honored that @9News is in the “unfriendly” company of @ColoradoSun @CPRNews @denverpost @NewslineCO and @axios Denver in seeking to hold elected officials to account. Via @JesseAPaul. pic.twitter.com/yegVg4Bsxm
— Kyle Clark (@KyleClark) May 14, 2021
What is Colorado Newsline you may ask?
Newsline was founded in 2019 and claims to be an independent and nonpartisan blog. In reality, the ultra-liberal site functions as a dumping ground for policy and opposition research from Bernie Bros like former Westword reporter Chase Woodruff.
The blog is a project of States Newsroom, a network of partisan “news” sites that was established by the liberal dark money group known as the Hopewell Fund in 2018.
From Open Secrets:
However, multiple States Newsroom affiliates fail to meet ‘basic standards of credibility and transparency’ according to NewsGuard … a group launched in 2018 by Steven Brill and Louis Gordon Crovitz that rates the reliability of online news sources.”
The network has achieved nonprofit status since then, although States Newsroom is still funded by various left-wing mega donors like Swiss billionaire Hansjörg Wyss.
Wyss is facing new calls for an investigation into his political donations that many see as flagrant attempts to circumvent campaign finance laws.
The complaint by Americans for Public Trust says there is reason to believe “Mr. Wyss indirectly funded federal electoral advocacy through his nonprofit organizations, the Wyss Foundation and the Berger Action Fund. The intended recipient of these funds was ultimately a variety of organizations whose primary purpose is to engage in electoral advocacy.”
It notes that “the law prohibits foreign nationals from making contributions to political committees whether directly or indirectly,” according to a copy of the complaint, which was filed Friday.
Wyss’s support for partisan “electoral advocacy” groups include donating at least $1 million since 2018 to States Newsroom.
This foreign national has also donated at least $1 million through his foundation to States Newsroom since 2018, a bundle of partisan attack sites posing as impartial news outlets spawned by Washington, D.C., consultants Arabella Advisors.
In fairness, a “partisan attack site posing as an impartial news outlet” could just as easily describe 9News.
It’s not entirely shocking Clark would appreciate the comparison.
However we’d be remiss if we didn’t point out Woodruff and Newsline’s penchant for twisting facts has even caught the attention of Clark’s own colleague Marshall Zellinger.
As Energy in Depth pointed out last fall, Woodruff repeated claims Zellinger previously debunked surrounding a state report on health risks of energy development:
To back this up, [Chase Woodruff] only offers up that CTEH’s study “differs starkly from the conclusions reached in CDPHE’s multi-year, peer-reviewed study, which found risks from benzene and multiple other toxic chemicals that can be emitted by industry operations.” […]
The truth is that only in very specific and rare circumstances are there low health risks for certain groups of people, as other media pointed out:
— Marshall Zelinger (@Marshall9News) October 17, 2019
Energy in Depth went on to summarize Newsline’s faux nonpartisan image thusly:
It’s all a murky web, but one thing is clear: Colorado Newsline is not the “nonpartisan and independent” news organization it claims to be. Instead, it’s funded and supported by a collection of left-leaning political groups intent on undermining energy production and boosting politicians that oppose the industry.
Now it’s not as if Clark is oblivious to Newsline’s partisan reputation or the fact they use millions from liberal billionaires like Wyss to “hold elected officials to account” by consistently attacking Republicans.
To the contrary, it was refreshing to see Clark admit he considers it an honor to share the “unfriendly” company of the liberal political activists at Newsline.
It might be the most honest thing he’s ever said.