O'Brien Labels Concord Monitor 'Democratic Propagandists'
NH House Speaker blasts newspaper while attending Bedford BBQ.
Two weeks ago, New Hampshire House Speaker William O'Brien shut the Concord Monitor out of his office during a press availability.
The decision came on the heels of the Monitor running a cartoon depicting O'Brien as Adolf Hitler. Yet when asked today if the decision was due to the cartoon, O'Brien - who was attending the Americans For Prosperity Family BBQ in Bedford - replied in the negative.
"It wasn't just the cartoon. What has become apparent is that they have a political agenda and it maps very neatly with what the Democrat agenda is, to distract people from the issues, to talk process, to talk personality, to implement Saul Alinsky's Rule No. 5, which is to demonize and marginalize the leadership of the opposition," said O'Brien. "And I understand that, that's politics and if Ray Buckley and company want to engage in that, you know, that's fair game, but when a media outlet such as the Concord Monitor starts engaging in it then at that point you know you're dealing with the opposition party and not legitimate journalism.
"Am I going to invite them into my office? No, I'm not going to invite them into my office. Are we going to deal with them as if they're legitimate journalists? No, they're propagandists," he continued. "The decision not to include them in the press availability was, in part, to point out that this is a media outlet that has decided that they're going to propagandize for one side of the political debate and we're not going to deal with them as if they're doing anything else."
When Patch asked if O'Brien was waiting on an apology, he, again, replied in the negative.
"I don't take this personally ... it's not that at all, what it is is an indication to a newspaper that says 'we want to be dealt with as if we're legitimate journalists,' then you have to act that way," said the House Speaker. "You know, if you want to editorialize against one side or the other, that happens all the time and that's entirely legitimate. If you choose your stories and you choose your reporting against a background of the attempt to carry forward one side or the others messages then you are no longer participating as a normal media and you no longer have the right to expect to be treated that way."
So when will Concord Monitor staff be welcomed back into the Speaker's office?
"Ask the Monitor," said O'Brien. "You know, I love talking to the people of New Hampshire, (but) I'm not talking to Democratic propagandists."