“It's not a good morning” : Boyles responds to Colorado Media Matters op-ed in Rocky and Post

In responding to a guest op-ed by Colorado Media Matters editorial director Bill Menezes published in the Rocky Mountain News and The Denver Post on April 13, 630 KHOW-AM host Peter Boyles again repeated his false suggestion that illegal immigrants who have children in the United States will not be deported. Boyles also denied making some of the statements at issue in the op-ed, and he continued his pattern of trying to deflect criticism of him onto his guests.

On the April 13 broadcast of his 630 KHOW-AM show, host Peter Boyles declared it “not a good morning” before discussing “an editorial by this guy who says local talk show hosts go too far, citing me.” The “guy” to whom Boyles referred was Colorado Media Matters editorial director Bill Menezes, whose guest commentary noting the inflammatory and false statements made on Colorado talk radio shows was published in the April 13 editions of the Rocky Mountain News and The Denver Post.

Boyles specifically referred to a passage noting the falsehood, often repeated on his show, that having children in the United States allows illegal immigrants to avoid deportation. He also mentioned a section of the commentary that debunked the origin and veracity of the statistic frequently cited by Boyles and his guests that illegal immigrants kill 25 Americans per day.

From the guest commentary by Colorado Media Matters editorial director Bill Menezes, published in the April 13 editions of the News and the Post (an online version appeared March 12):

Some examples of falsehoods and ethnic smears among the many that Colorado Media Matters has recorded from Denver-area talk radio:

  • Discussing the dangers purportedly posed by illegal immigrants, Boyles and guests on his show have claimed repeatedly that those immigrants kill on average 25 Americans a day. They cite Government Accountability Office (GAO) statistics that allegedly support those claims. In fact, there is no GAO report or study that substantiates that “25 a day” figure, and a review of Justice Department statistics also indicates that the figure appears to be bogus.
  • On numerous broadcasts Boyles repeated the assertion that a U.S.-born child of illegal immigrants entitles the parents to avoid deportation, despite the fact that federal law indicates otherwise.

Boyles disputed the column's contention that he himself -- not just his guests -- has falsely claimed that the Government Accountability Office (GAO) is the source of the dubious statistic regarding the number of Americans killed by illegal immigrants. He also restated the falsehood -- debunked numerous times by Colorado Media Matters -- that illegal immigrants who have a child here can avoid deportation.

From the April 13 broadcast of 630 KHOW-AM's The Peter Boyles Show:

BOYLES: It's not a good morning. Rocky Mountain News prints an editorial by this guy who says local talk show hosts go too far, citing me by saying, “On numerous broadcasts” -- writes, let's the Rocky this morning -- “Boyles repeats the assertion U.S.-born child of illegal immigrants entitles the parents to avoid deportation despite the fact federal law indicates otherwise.” To the writer and to the Rocky Mountain News: Show me the parent who's been deported. Show me the mother, because that's what it is. 'Cause in many cases, the father is gone. They don't go after the father. But, to this man and to the Rocky Mountain News, you give me the example of the woman in Denver, Colorado, who has had her baby left behind and had herself deported -- or for that matter in Colorado. Federal law says all kinds of things, but it has to be enacted, sir. On the same time talking about statistics, I don't know where they get this, but it's fine. You can say it if somebody on the show has said it. I didn't say it. If somebody said it as a guest, go after them. But in the meantime, you have to show me the example of the illegal woman in this country who had a baby and she got kicked out and the baby got kept. It is not what happens and they write that crap in the paper this morning. This is a bizarre time and it does have meaning. This is, this is [caller] in Douglas County. This is a nasty, nasty morning. And you can see the Rocky, in true fashion, allows this stuff to be pub -- that's fine. I, I welcome the critique. I welcome their right to do it. I'm glad the Rocky wrote it. But the fact of the matter is, that isn't true.

While it is true that Boyles' guests have cited more often than Boyles has the dubious statistic that illegal immigrants kill 25 Americans a day, Boyles has not challenged the assertion. And as Colorado Media Matters has noted, Boyles falsely claimed that the 25-a-day figure came from a GAO (or as he called it, the “GOA” ) study, in a conversation with guest Clyde Harkins, the American Constitution Party candidate for Colorado governor, on his September 27, 2006 broadcast:

HARKINS: Well you know, I think on the Internet, Peter, you can go and find the following -- I don't know which representative it was -- but I believe he has collected data, probably from the national crime bureau, part of the FBI Department of Justice, but I believe he said -- and I heard him on some program I didn't catch his name, I'm sorry -- 13 Americans are killed each day by --

BOYLES: Oh no, that's -- yeah --

HARKINS: -- illegals, and 12 are murdered. So you take 25, you multiply it by three --

BOYLES: It's a, it's a --

HARKINS: -- it's 9,000 people. It's three 9-11s.

BOYLES: It's G -- it's government -- it's GOA, and it's their numbers, if anybody's looking for them. People get all upset about numbers, but it's a GOA number.

Boyles' attempt to deflect criticism of the inaccuracies on his show onto his guests repeats a recent instance when, in an on-air conversation with his business partner, Don Wrege, Boyles suggested that Colorado Media Matters was “mad at” Wrege, not himself. Similarly, after Colorado Media Matters initiated an online petition calling upon Boyles to cease spreading false and dubious information about illegal immigration, Boyles claimed that Colorado Media Matters “want[s] me to apologize for what ... other people said.” Colorado Media Matters has also previously noted Boyles' selective amnesia regarding the oft-repeated dubious statistics cited on his show about the number of Americans illegal immigrants purportedly kill.