Andrea Austria / Media Matters

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Podcast host Patrick Bet-David provides a safe space for guests to push bigotry and conspiracy theories

Bet-David and his co-hosts promote anti-LGBTQ rhetoric and election and immigration conspiracy theories alongside guests like Jesse Watters and Alex Jones

Podcaster Patrick Bet-David provides a platform for far-right figures to promote conspiracy theories and bigotry, potentially to millions of people. Bet-David’s PBD Podcast has allowed guests to promote the white nationalist “great replacement” theory, claim that homosexuality is being pushed on children, and push conspiracy theories about mail-in ballot harvesting.

  • Who is Patrick Bet-David?

    • Bet-David is the founder of the insurance company PHP Agency and digital media outlet Valuetainment. The Daily Beast described PHP Agency as “a multilevel marketing company” that “makes money when people recruit lower-ranking members, who then funnel their sales commissions upwards.” Bet-David has interviewed major figures such as former President George W. Bush and professional basketball player Kobe Bryant at PHP Agency conferences, eventually posting some of these interviews to Valuetainment’s YouTube channel. [Daily Beast, 5/31/19; PR Newswire, 7/20/22; YouTube, 8/23/19; Valuetainment, accessed on 5/6/24]
    • Valuetainment hosts multiple interview-focused podcasts, including Bet-David’s own PBD Podcast. Bet-David has interviewed a variety of right-wing guests on his podcast, including Fox host Jesse Watters, alleged human trafficker Andrew Tate, and Turning Point USA founder Charlie Kirk, as well as celebrities not involved in politics. [Huffpost, 4/15/24; Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 6/12/23; Forbes, 10/16/23]
    • Bet-David’s associated YouTube channels have millions of subscribers. As of April 24, 2024, the Valuetainment channel had 5.48 million subscribers and the PBD Podcast channel had 1.77 million. Additionally, Bet-David’s two interviews with Tate have over 30 million views combined. [YouTube, Valuetainment, accessed 4/24/24; Youtube, PBD Podcast, accessed 4/24/24, 9/13/22, 6/12/23]
    • PBD Podcast airs live on YouTube at least twice a week, with uploads to the Valuetainment website and major platforms such as Spotify and iTunes as well. [Valuetainment, accessed 5/6/24; iTunes store, accessed 5/6/24; Spotify, accessed 5/6/24]
    • Valuetainment also hosts the “personal finance” podcast SOSCAST, where host Adam Sosnick interviewed Holocaust denier Nick Fuentes. During the interview, Fuentes refused to answer a question about whether Adolf Hitler was a “bad guy.” Sosnick is also a co-host of PBD Podcast. [YouTube, accessed 5/6/24, 5/6/24; Valuetainment, accessed 5/6/24; Valuetainment, SOSCAST, 8/3/23]
  • The PBD Podcast provides a platform for right-wing media figures to produce viral clips and gain access to YouTube, sometimes circumventing bans from the platform

    • Bet-David interviewed conspiracy theorist Alex Jones on his YouTube show, even though Jones has been banned from the platform for repeatedly violating hate speech and harassment policies. Bet-David interviewed Jones for three hours, during which Jones promoted conspiracy theories, including that the Titan submersible implosion had been used as a distraction from investigations into Hunter Biden. Jones argued that, despite being made aware of the implosion much earlier, authorities “just decided to leave it out there as a distraction with all the Hunter Biden stuff coming out.” [NPR, 8/6/18; The Associated Press, 6/2/23; Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 6/24/23]
    • Bet-David gave Andrew Tate, who has also been banned from YouTube, multiple long-form interviews on his channel, allowing Tate to push his claims of innocence after he was arrested on human trafficking charges in Romania. Bet-David attacked the credibility of a woman who accused Tate of sexual harassment, claiming, “There's way too many things that doesn't give it credibility,” and Tate called his accuser an “actor.” Tate was banned from YouTube in 2022 for violating hate speech policies. [The New York Times, 4/5/24; NBC, 8/19/22; Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 6/12/23]
    • Charlie Kirk used his appearance on PBD Podcast to speculate that Israeli forces may have allowed the October 7 attack to occur by ordering troops to stand down. While on the podcast Kirk questioned, “I think some questions need to be asked, was there a stand down order? Was there a stand down order? Six hours? I don’t believe it.” According to Forbes, Kirk appears to have been the first major right-wing figure to promote the conspiracy theory, which later ran rampant on TikTok, Facebook, and X (formerly Twitter). [Forbes, 10/16/23; Media Matters, 10/17/23]
    • Fox host Jesse Watters’ podcast appearance went viral on X for suggesting that McDonald's workers making $20 an hour were making six-figure salaries. Watters asked the host, “If you’re making $20 an hour to work at a fast-food restaurant, is that six figures?” After being corrected that $20 an hour equated to around $40,000 per year, Watters continued to argue that workers were overpaid, stating, “That job really doesn’t require much, so it’s inflating the entire, you know, labor sector.” [HuffPost, 4/15/24]
  • Bet-David and guests spread anti-LGBTQ rhetoric, including the idea that homosexuality is a “worldview” being “inflicted” on children

    • Bet-David complained that Christians are “too tolerant” of the LGBTQ community and said they are now “paying the price” for their perceived tolerance. After lauding a supposed lack of support of the LBGTQ community from Muslims, he said, “There’s certain things that Muslims will not tolerate that Christians will. Unfortunately, Christians are, you know, the most tolerant religion — on the Christian side. I'm talking nondenominational. I'm not talking LDS. I'm not talking the sects. I'm talking, specifically, Christians are too, too tolerant about all this stuff. Now they're paying a price. Now you're complaining about it? What were you 30 years ago?” [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 2/21/24]
    • Bet-David implied that the Texas Rangers won the World Series because they “didn’t cave to LGBTQ.” He stated, “This year, all the teams, ‘LGBTQ MLB, LGBTQ, LGBTQ.’ The only team that didn't cave to LGBTQ won the World Series? Seriously? The Texas Rangers? You're joking, right? No. Maybe there are certain clues in life that we have to pay attention to.” [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 1/19/24]
    • During an interview with Sosnick and Bet-David, Tate justified the existence of harsh anti-gay laws in predominately Muslim countries by claiming that homosexuality is being pushed on Western children. Tate argued that “the reason homosexuality is … outlawed in these countries” is “not because they fear what two grown men are going to do,” but because “they fear what’s happened in the West,” which he describes as gay people “inflicting [their] worldview on” children. [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 6/12/23]
  • Guests and co-hosts on the podcast pushed a variety of anti-immigration rhetoric and conspiracy theories including the “great replacement” theory

    • BlazeTV host Glenn Beck argued that nonprofit groups like Red Cross handing out instructions to help migrants travel safely are part of an “organized plot to collapse the United States.” He claimed that these organizations are handing out maps “with the train schedules, the stops where you'll be welcome, the maps, how to go, where to go to cross into the United States,” before concluding, “This is an organized plot to collapse the United States.” The Red Cross and other similar groups provide relief supplies to migrants regardless of where they are in the world. [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 1/19/24; American Red Cross, accessed 4/23/24]
    • Co-host Tom Ellsworth claimed migrant voters were going to replace voters in red states, a key aspect of the white nationalist “great replacement theory,” and told viewers to look into it. He stated, “All of those people coming across were supposed to stay in those red states, make life miserable for the red states, and be the replacement vote later. Look up ‘replacement vote,’ people. Google that." The idea of a “replacement vote” harkens to the white nationalist “great replacement” conspiracy theory, which imagines that nonwhite immigrants will vote a certain way and diminish the political influence of white Americans. [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 10/17/23; National Immigration Forum, accessed 4/23/24]
    • Co-host Vincent Oshana argued that President Joe Biden is committing treason by allegedly shipping migrants into the country in order to vote for him, even though migrants cannot vote in federal elections. He stated, “When they're coming in, they're wearing Biden shirts and being told, ‘We're voting for him because they're telling us to.’” After being interrupted by Valuetainment’s “talent partner,” former CNN host Chris Cuomo (who recently joined the podcast’s “Home Team”), Oshana added, “And then Biden, they admitted last week, he flew in — secretly — 320,000 illegals across the country, which, to me, that's treason.” The migrants’ flights mentioned were neither secret nor illegal. As of 2023 certain migrants who apply may legally fly into the country after securing a financial sponsor. They must also pay their own way. U.S. Customs and Border Protection discloses monthly the number of migrants allowed to enter the country under this policy. [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 3/8/24; Valuetainment, accessed 5/6/24; The Associated Press, 3/6/24]
    • Jesse Watters claimed that Chinese nationals are “beholden to the CCP” and will spy on U.S. assets. He stated, “If you're a Chinese national and you come to the United States, you're beholden to the CCP. If they tap you in California and they say, ’You're going to go spy on that naval base,’ you're going to go spy on that naval base.” [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 4/6/24]
  • Both Bet-David and his guests pushed conspiracy theories about voter ID laws and mail-in ballots

    • Bet-David argued that a country without voter ID laws is “not a country.” “A country without IDs and without being checked, you're not a country. You're not even a country club. You're not even a village. I don't even know what to call you, but you're definitely not a country,” he argued. Voter ID laws do very little to catch voter fraud as voter impersonation is rare, with The Washington Post finding only 31 credible allegations “that someone may have pretended to be someone else at the polls, in any way that an ID law could fix” from 2000 to 2014. [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 3/8/24; The Washington Post, 8/6/14]
    • Bet-David claimed that a lack of voter ID laws will cause “the left” to win every presidential election “forever.” He ranted, “16 out of 50 states in America do not require do not require an ID to vote. Those 16 out 50 states … have 212 of the electoral votes out of the 538.” Bet-David continued, “Those 11 out of 50 states that don't require a photo ID to vote have 69 electoral votes out of the 538. Sixty-nine plus 212, it's a sweep forever for the left.” [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 3/8/24]
    • Right-wing pundit Candace Owens pushed an election fraud conspiracy theory that people “harbor[ed]” mail-in ballots in order to vote multiple times. Owens argued, “When you mail out a ballot automatically … that allows people to then harbor those ballots and then to dump them off — you can have one person doing all of the votes, OK — and to vote multiple times.” There is no evidence suggesting that individuals who drop off multiple ballots are “doing all of the votes.” Though exact election laws vary, states that automatically send out mail-in ballots generally record the first instance someone votes in an election, blocking additional attempts. [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 3/8/24; The Associated Press, 5/3/22; Bipartisan Policy Center, 3/13/24; National Conference of State Legislatures, 9/10/20]
  • Podcast hosts and guests used the platform to engage in a variety of bizarre arguments

    • When asked by Oshana why Disney, which for a time owned the rights to The Sound of Freedom, would not release the movie, Glenn Beck argued that it was because some people support child sex trafficking. Beck speculated that one possible reason for withholding the movie is that “there's a lot of people that don't think that that's so bad anymore that you can have children and use them for sex.” [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 1/19/24]
    • Bet-David argued that conservative outlet The Daily Wire should change its name to “Daily Jewish Wire” He argued that “if you're Jewish and you want to proudly sell all the values and principles that you believe in,” the “number one media company to go to” is The Daily Wire. He continued, “Daily Wire can be … DJW, Daily Jewish Wire, or DIW, Daily Israel Wire.” [Valuetainment, PBD Podcast, 4/4/24]