Soros-funded journalism is coming to seven states in 2018, thanks to ProPublica. The liberal journalism nonprofit announced on Dec. 9 it had chosen journalists in Louisiana, West Virginia, Oregon, New Mexico, Indiana, Illinois and Florida to receive year-long stipends to pursue ProPublica-approved investigations.
Propublica has received millions of dollars from left-wing billionaire George Soros and other liberal foundations like the Knight Foundation, the Ford Foundation and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. It began operations in 2008 with a $10 million grant from the liberal Sandler Foundation. The Local Reporting Network project itself was funded by a $3 million grant from an undisclosed donor.
The liberal nonprofit outlet initially advertised the Local Reporting Network project in October, 2017, calling on newsrooms that wanted to further ProPublica’s goal “to spur change through stories with moral force” to submit proposals for year-long projects ProPublica could fund.
The projects chosen for funding “include conflicts of interest, housing, mental health care, criminal justice and workplace safety,” ProPublica reported. ProPublica senior editor Charles Ornstein said each selected project “digs deep and holds power to account.” Ornstein will personally work with the selected reporters to guide the forthcoming reports.
The selected reporters are from The Advocate in Baton Rouge, LA, the Charleston Gazette-Mail in Charleston, WV, the Santa Fe New Mexican in Santa Fe, NM, the South Bend Tribune in South Bend, IN, The Southern Illinoisan from Carbondale IL, the Malheur Enterprise, in Vale, Oregon, and WMFE in Orlando, FL. The seven journalists were chosen from a pool of 239 applicants.
The Local Reporting Network is just the latest in ProPublica’s push into local journalism. Earlier in 2017 ProPublica launched ProPublica Illinois -- the first “regional publishing operation of ProPublica.”
ProPublica has a history of liberal alliances and reporting. In January, 2017, it launched “Documenting Hate,” a database of “hate crimes and bias incidents.” Many of the 21 partners were liberal (including the Southern Poverty Law Center, Univision and Buzzfeed), while none were conservative.
When Buzzfeed released an unverified Russian dossier in January 2017 which attacked President Donald Trump, ProPublica president Richard Tofel defended the outlet.
ProPublica also helped the IRS target conservative groups in 2012 by releasing reports against more than 14 conservative organizations like Americans for Prosperity and the Republican Jewish Coalition.