Anti-Clinton Author Gives Up Nonpartisan Cover

Anti-Clinton Author Gives Up Nonpartisan Cover

››› ››› NICK FERNANDEZ

Media outlets previously helped Peter Schweizer push back against criticism of his anti-Clinton book Clinton Cash by credulously reporting that he was conducting a similar investigation into former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. But now that the product of his investigation has been released -- a 38-page e-book compared to The New York Times bestseller he wrote on Bill and Hillary Clinton -- Schweizer says "there's not a comparison" because the Clintons' behavior is "unprecedented." Schweizer's Clinton allegations were widely debunked.

Media Cited Schweizer's Bush Investigation To Present Schweizer As A Legitimate And Nonpartisan Journalist 

Bloomberg Politics: "Left-Wing Clamor" That Schweizer" Is "Out To Get" Clinton is Wrong Because He "Is Targeting Jeb Bush Next." In an April 23 piece by Joshua Green, Bloomberg Politics reported that in contrast to the "left-wing clamor that Schweizer is simply out to get Hillary Clinton," "Schweizer is working on a similar investigation of Jeb Bush's finances that he expects to publish this summer." The piece quoted Schweizer saying that he was conducting a "drill-down investigation of Jeb's finances similar to what we did with the Clintons":

That landed Schweizer squarely in the crosshairs of the Clinton team and allied liberal groups, which have launched a campaign to discredit Schweizer as "disreputable" and blinded by partisan animosity. Anyone familiar with Schweizer's work knows better: he wrote a well-regarded book about the Bush dynasty and another, detailing insider trading in Congress, that led to a new law, the bipartisan STOCK Act of 2012, which aims to curb these abuses.

That hasn't quieted the left-wing clamor that Schweizer is simply out to get Hillary Clinton. But maybe this will: Schweizer is working on a similar investigation of Jeb Bush's finances that he expects to publish this summer.

"What we're doing is a drill-down investigation of Jeb's finances similar to what we did with the Clintons in terms of looking at financial dealings, cronyism, who he's been involved with," Schweizer told me on Wednesday. "We've found some interesting things." [Bloomberg Politics, 4/23/15]

CNN Suggested Jeb Bush Investigation Undermines Statements That Schweizer Is "A Biased Conservative Operative Gunning For" Clinton. Highlighting the Bloomberg Politics piece, CNN reported that Schweizer was "looking into Bush's financial dealings in the same way [he] scrutinized the Clintons," presenting this as a contrast to how "Hillary Clinton allies are working to discredit the author of the forthcoming book "Clinton Cash" as a biased conservative operative gunning for the frontrunner of the Democratic presidential nomination":

Hillary Clinton allies are working to discredit the author of the forthcoming book "Clinton Cash" as a biased conservative operative gunning for the frontrunner of the Democratic presidential nomination.

But "Clinton Cash" author Peter Schweizer on Thursday revealed his next target: Republican presidential hopeful Jeb Bush.

Schweizer told Bloomberg Politics on Thursday that he and a team of researchers are looking into Bush's financial dealings in the same way they scrutinized the Clintons. The book on Bush, who leads the Republican presidential field in the latest CNN/ORC poll, would be published this summer. [CNN, 4/23/15]

Politico: "'Clinton Cash' Author To Take On Jeb Bush Next." Politico also highlighted the Bloomberg Politics piece, reporting that Schweizer "is reportedly working on another book that he expects to release in the summer. Only this time, he'll be writing about" Bush:

Peter Schweizer, the author of the forthcoming book "Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich," is reportedly working on another book that he expects to release in the summer.

Only this time, he'll be writing about about Jeb Bush.

Schweizer told Bloomberg that his team of researchers has been poring over financial details from the former Florida governor for about four months.

He also said he wants to partner with media organizations interested in reporting on the book's findings, as he did with "Clinton Cash." [Politico,4/23/15]

Schweizer Released Bush Investigation's Result -- A 38-Page E-Book

There Is No Plausible Comparison Between Schweizer's Works On Bush And The Clintons. In October, Schweizer's Government Accountability Institute released Bush Bucks, a 38-page e-book. By contrast, Clinton Cash is a book more than four times as long that was published by Harper. It spent five weeks on The New York Times bestseller list. [The New York Times10/20/15The New York Times7/21/15

After Release Of Bush Bucks, Schweizer Admits "There's Not A Comparison" To Clinton Cash Because Clinton Dealings Supposedly Worse

Schweizer: "There's Not A Comparison" Between Bush And Clinton Works, Since Clinton's Dealings Were "Unprecedented." In a November 4 appearance on MSNBC's Morning Joe, Schweizer said "there's not a comparison" between the results of his investigations into Clinton and Bush, and used a question from Joe Scarborough about how Bush's dealings are "a bit different from ... say, the Clintons" to repeat debunked Clinton Cash claims about Hillary Clinton's time at the Department of State:

JOE SCARBOROUGH (HOST): But isn't this a bit different from people that do favors for people while they are in office like, say, the Clintons?

PETER SCHWEIZER: Yeah. I mean, look, you know, immediately people are going to compare Bush Bucks to Clinton Cash. I would argue there's not a comparison. Certainly in the case of the Bush's, I think there's a legitimate questions about Jeb and how Jeb has made his money, but look, in this case, we're talking very clearly about Jeb Bush being governor for eight years, then leaving, and basically a handful of companies giving him-- paying him a lot of money. And those companies did well during his tenure. In the case of the Clintons, we're talking about something really unprecedented. We're talking about a lot more money, and we're talking about the Clinton family taking money simultaneously while Hillary Clinton is secretary of state, and by the way, from foreign interests. That's the other difference, I think between what the Clintons have done and what the Bushes have done. [MSNBC, Morning Joe11/4/15]

Clinton Cash Is Full Of Errors, Fabrications, And Distortions

Clinton Cash Contained More Than 20 Errors, Fabrications, And Distortions. There are over 20 errors, fabrications, and distortions in Clinton Cash, according to a Media Matters review. Schweizer is a Republican activist and consultant who has worked for Republican politicians like George W. Bush, Sarah Palin, and Bobby Jindal. [Media Matters, 4/30/15]

Numerous Errors In Clinton Cash Have Been Removed On Kindle. On May 14, Politico reported that "seven or eight" inaccurate passages in Clinton Cashhad been removed from its Kindle version. [Media Matters5/14/15]

Schweizer Has A History Of Significant Errors, Retractions, And Questionable Sourcing. Reporters and fact checkers have excoriated Schweizer for factual problems over the years. A Media Matters analysis found at least 10 separate incidents in which the media called out Schweizer for botching his reporting:

The following is how reporters have described Schweizer's work: "Incorrect," "inaccurate," "bogus," "a fatal shortcoming in Journalism 101," "the facts didn't stand up," "unfair and inaccurate," "specious argument," "there was nothing there," "suspicious," "the facts don't fit," facts "do not check out," sources "do not exist or cannot be tracked down," "confusion and contradiction," "discrepancies," "admitted a mistake," "neither journalism nor history," "a polemic so unchecked ... that we can't tell the fact from the fiction," sources "have clearly used him," and "tacitly conced[ed] he was wrong." [Media Matters4/20/2015]

Media Acknowledged Schweizer's Clinton Reporting Contained "No Smoking Gun." Multiple news outlets found "little evidence" to support Schweizer's Clinton Cash allegations. [Media Matters4/23/15]

Posted In
Standards, Government, Ethics
Network/Outlet
MSNBC, CNN, Bloomberg, The Politico
Person
Joe Scarborough, Peter Schweizer
Show/Publication
Morning Joe
Stories/Interests
Hillary Clinton
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