For actual journalists who have no skin in the game and no partisan biases to inject into their reporting, the story of Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell’s China connections is a big freakin’ deal (as Joe Biden would say).
But for others, like CNN’s junior media hall monitor Oliver Darcy, it’s just another excuse to throw a tantrum about how Fox News is supposedly treating a poor, innocent Democrat unfairly or something.
Before we get to that, let’s quickly recap the explosive report itself. Here’s the short version of what Axios reported Tuesday about Swalwell’s longtime dealings and interactions with Chinese national Christine Fang:
Fang took part in fundraising activity for Swalwell’s 2014 re-election campaign, according to a Bay Area political operative and a current U.S. intelligence official. Swalwell’s office was directly aware of these activities on its behalf, the political operative said. That same political operative, who witnessed Fang fundraising on Swalwell’s behalf, found no evidence of illegal contributions.
Federal Election Commission records don’t indicate Fang herself made donations, which are prohibited from foreign nationals.
Fang helped place at least one intern in Swalwell’s office, according to those same two people, and interacted with Swalwell at multiple events over the course of several years.
Swalwell, a failed 2020 Democratic presidential candidate, has blamed the story on President Trump, because of course he has.
Outside of Fox News, most major media news outlets have mostly ignored the story or have otherwise downplayed it much in the way they did Tara Reade’s sexual assault allegations against Joe Biden earlier this year for almost a full month before filing obligatory “reports” on them.
The reasons these unflattering stories about two high-profile Democrats weren’t taken seriously by many national news outlets are so easy to spot that a caveman could do it. But Darcy himself all but outright confirmed it in a whiny tweet he posted to his Twitter account just before lunchtime today, complaining about how Fox News was “obsessed” with the story even though Swalwell had not been accused of wrongdoing:
Fox News is obsessed w/Axios’ story about a suspected Chinese spy targeting @ericswalwell, running segment after segment after segment on it. The network is dishonestly suggesting it’s equivalent to “Russian collusion” — even though their own digital stories contain this graf. pic.twitter.com/vCU9lS7wo1
— Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) December 9, 2020
The discerning reader will note that not being accused of wrongdoing doesn’t mean wrongdoing and/or other improprieties did not occur, which is why House Republicans are asking questions and demanding more information on the matter.
In any event, Darcy was taken to the woodshed by people who remember all too well CNN’s 4-year-long obsession with the Trump/Russia collusion hoax among other Trump “scandals” that weren’t:
Swalwell got a defensive briefing from the Obama FBI. The same FBI didn’t alert Trump to any issues and instead wiretapped Carter Page and sent undercover agents to entrap him and Flynn.
Typical CNN — running interference for democrats and ignoring their ties to China. https://t.co/LApuHlipEX
— Arthur Schwartz (@ArthurSchwartz) December 9, 2020
The guy whose network allowed a now-felon porn lawyer take the reins over their air for an entire news cycle has something to say about obsession https://t.co/lBelBKYlkE
— Joseph Chalfant (@JoeChalfant) December 9, 2020
CNN: Isn’t it weird how Fox thinks an American adversary planting a spy in Congress is as big as our fake story about Russian collusion? https://t.co/NtYi6ZWXTB
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) December 9, 2020
You’ve been ranting and raving about Russian collusion for the past 4 years with no proof. Mueller investigators mulled through nonsense for 2 years, wasting millions of dollars. We know that both Feinstein and Swalwell were compromised. https://t.co/y7fp2Wmfq2
— Jay Legend (@JayBelize23) December 9, 2020
Not only is CNN the last network out there that should be complaining about another news outlet’s alleged “obsession” with a story, but they’re also the last network that should be giving lectures on what other networks should and should not be reporting, especially when you consider that some of their “priorities” have been to “report” on the number of ice cream scoops President Trump prefers, among other riveting stories.
Dear Darcy and CNN: Y’all might want to sit this one out. Oh wait, that’s right. You already are.