A recent news segment from Sinclair Broadcast Group chief political correspondent Scott Thuman, which aired in dozens of states and several TV stations in Georgia, uncritically pushed the Republican narrative that Democratic candidates in the Georgia Senate runoff elections are “radicals” who would “bring in a wave of socialism.” Meanwhile, Thuman failed to mention during his report the genuine radicalism of Georgia Republican Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler, who supported the ill-fated attempt by Texas’ attorney general to overturn the results of the election in the state they claim to represent.
On December 9, after the election outcome had already been certified by Georgia's Republican governor and secretary of state, Perdue and Loeffler signed on to a statement saying they “fully support” an attempt by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton to throw out Georgia’s election results, along with the votes in three other swing states that President-elect Joe Biden won. The Supreme Court quickly rejected the lawsuit, and Paxton currently faces his own federal investigation “for alleged corruption, bribery and abuse of office.”
But this attempt to overturn the will of Georgia voters is not the only controversy swirling around Perdue and Loeffler. In recent weeks, the Republican senators have faced multiple scandals:
- In late November, multiple news outlets reported scandalous details about Perdue’s stock trades during the coronavirus pandemic, which had been investigated by the FBI for possibly violating insider trading laws. These new details refuted Perdue’s repeated public claims that he does not get personally involved in his stock trades.
- Another news report in late November from The Daily Beast detailed how Perdue invested in a defense contractor for the first time just before his appointment to a Senate subcommittee with jurisdiction over its contracts, and then he sold off the stock to net “tens of thousands of dollars in profits.”
- A November news report explained that Perdue privately pressed for a tax break for pro sports team owners, including Loeffler, who have donated more than $425,000 to his campaign. (Perdue’s effort failed.)
- Besides the investigation into her own stock trades earlier this year, Loeffler posed for a photo just days ago with a violent neo-Nazi and former Ku Klux Klan leader at a campaign event. Her campaign later said she was clueless about the man’s identity and disavowed him.
Thuman mentioned none of these scandals in his December 15 news report, which aired on at least 42 Sinclair-owned or -operated local TV stations in 37 states, including multiple stations in Georgia. Instead, he said that “the GOP has tried to portray their competition as radicals, warning that a Senate led by Democrats would bring in a wave of socialism.” He also aired a quote from Perdue painting the January runoff elections as “the last line of defense” for “everybody in the United States.”