Reprinted with permission from MediaMatters
Supposedly “nonpartisan” reporter Peter Schweizer, who has propelled negative stories about Democratic candidates into outlets such as The New York Times, is set to appear as a paid speaker for a Republican fundraiser.
Schweizer is the president of the Government Accountability Institute (GAI), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Republican megadonors Rebekah Mercer, who is GAI’s chairwoman, and Robert Mercer gave GAI $500,000 in 2018. The organization was co-founded by Stephen Bannon, who closely tied GAI to Breitbart.com before he left both organizations to work for President Donald Trump in August 2016. Schweizer is currently a senior contributor for Breitbart.
Schweizer and GAI notoriously advanced shoddy research into the media regarding the Clintons during the 2016 campaign. They have again attempted to do that with Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, with Schweizer earning a New York Times op-ed that inadequately described him as simply “an investigative journalist” and author.
Schweizer is now further tying himself financially to the Republican Party and Trump. He is scheduled to keynote a February 21 fundraiser in Washington state for the Snohomish County Republican Party, which is, in part, dedicated to electing “Republican candidates to federal, state, county and municipal offices.” A flyer for the event identifies Schweizer as “the “President of the Government Accountability Institute and a best-selling author.”
The party announced Schweizer’s appearance on November 26 and touted his books about the Clintons and Bidens. A few days later, the party sent $10,450 to All American Entertainment, which helps book Schweizer for appearances, as the “1st installment for keynote.”
Prior speakers for Snohomish’s annual fundraiser have included former Turning Point USA official Candace Owens, Project Veritas founder James O’Keefe, and Fox News’ Pete Hegseth. Fox News’ Lawrence Jones was originally scheduled to headline the Schweizer event but according to the party he had to cancel because of “a new Fox News employee Policy. Employees can no longer speak at political organizations.” (Fox News has inconsistently enforced that policy.)
Schweizer has previously been portrayed as “nonpartisan.” Breitbart.com claimed in 2018 that “Schweizer has garnered praise from conservatives and progressives alike for his reputation as a nonpartisan deep-dive investigative journalist.” (In reality, numerous reporters have criticized his shoddy work.)
After the New York Times received criticism for publishing Schweizer in October, a Times spokesperson said that his “op-ed makes an argument that nonpartisan government watchdogs would make, arguing in favor of a law that would prohibit self-dealing by those with government connections.” Breitbart celebrated the Times’ “nonpartisan” description in a post.
Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore