On her blog, radio host Tammy Bruce asserted that Fox News host Bill O'Reilly has been under "increasing attacks ... by the [George] Soros Media Gestapo, Media Matters. Once again, the left, via MM, has resorted to their default position in attempting to demonizing [sic] someone, specifically by calling O'Reilly a racist." Bruce further asserted, "The left, Soros, and his political and media thugs, cannot withstand independent voices and they will work overtime to silence them. Let's make sure these new gestapos fail." In fact, Soros has never given money to Media Matters, either directly or through another organization.
In a September 26 entry on her blog, radio host Tammy Bruce previewed her appearance that evening on Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor by asserting, "Tonight on O'Reilly we'll be talking about the increasing attacks he's been under by the [George] Soros Media Gestapo, Media Matters. Once again, the left, via MM, has resorted to their default position in attempting to demonizing [sic] someone, specifically by calling [host Bill] O'Reilly a racist." Bruce, who has described herself as an "openly gay, pro-choice, gun owning, pro-death penalty, voted-for-President Bush authentic feminist," also called Media Matters for America "the new SS," a reference to the Shutzstaffel paramilitary organization that existed under the National Socialist party in Germany. Bruce further asserted, "The left, Soros, and his political and media thugs, cannot withstand independent voices and they will work overtime to silence them. Let's make sure these new gestapos fail." In fact, Soros has never given money to Media Matters, either directly or through another organization, as has been repeatedly and exhaustively demonstrated.
Bruce's blog post was noted on the blog Scoobie Davis Online.
During her subsequent appearance on the September 26 edition of The O'Reilly Factor, Bruce made similar comments, as Media Matters documented. She said, "I think most of us who are in the public eye have got to call attention to the real story, which is the fact that a Gestapo has emerged in America. If you'll notice, the attacks on you mirror the attacks on General [David] Petraeus. And you have a media Gestapo in Media Matters, and then you have the political Gestapo in MoveOn.org."
Bruce continued: "And the intention is the same. The intention is to smear an individual without any basis in reality, without any fairness, in an attempt to make that person demonized so that they will not be listened to." She added: "It is a very serious dynamic. Now, the issues involved are almost irrelevant because the truth of the matter is, no matter what is said, no matter what is done, the Gestapo will find a way to move in some kind of element of demonization."
Bruce appeared on The O'Reilly Factor to discuss Media Matters, which documented O'Reilly's controversial September 19 comment about his visit to Sylvia's restaurant in Harlem.
On the September 26 edition of MSNBC's Countdown, Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson said that O'Reilly's comment was "at best a casually racist remark," as Media Matters noted. Robinson added, "But you know what really ticks me off is that when you say that, when you point that out, you know, immediately you get charged by O'Reilly and cohorts with, you know, you're the thought police, you're the thought Gestapo, you're the word Nazis, you're interfering with free speech and somehow cutting off an honest debate about race. Well, tell me what in the year 2007 is debatable about whether or not black people can use a knife and fork." Robinson appeared on Countdown at 8:40 p.m. ET, and Bruce appeared on The O'Reilly Factor at 8:13 p.m. ET. It is unclear whether Robinson was speaking in response to Bruce's comments.