GOP consultant runs bogus news site

Wander onto the pages of NCPoliticalBeat.com and you could be forgiven for thinking you had stumbled upon a new independent source for political news in North Carolina. Indeed several people whose opinions I trust follow the site via Facebook and Twitter. The site itself, in its FAQ section posts this Q&A:

Q: Is NC Political Beat affiliated with a party?
A: No. NCPB is a non-partisan news source and is in no way affiliated with any party, electioneering organization, or non-profit.

Yet a scratch of the surface reveals that the website is registered to the Battleground Group, a GOP political consulting firm based in Florida which boasts of being at the center of the 2010 $1.2 million campaign by NC Republicans to retake the NC House. Money, and truth, were no obstacle.

The byline of the Battleground Group is "Defeating the Enemy at Every Turn". NCPoliticalBeat is apparently one of those turns, set up in July 2010. In August and September 2010 several posts were authored by then Battleground employee Dominic Palvisak also listed as administrative and technical contact for the site in domain records. These posts were mostly links to polls by the conservative Civitas Institute and Republican consultants Carolina Strategy Group. Palvisak currently serves as a legislative assistant for Virginia State House Delegate Mark Dudenhefer, on whose campaign he served as consultant. These articles are the only content that seems remotely original and none were posted after the November elections. Since then the content on the site has been mostly filtered feeds of stories from other sources. The link for advertising on the site leads by referral to the Battleground Group website.

The site claims:

NCPoliticalBeat.com, or NCPB, was formed as a one-stop shop for all political headlines in the state of North Carolina.

Of course it was. Why would a Republican consulting group which got almost $1 million from the NC GOP in 2010 want you to go anywhere else?

Comments

Effing liars

Cut from the same piece of crap at Thom Tillis and the rest of Art Pope's Magical Multimillion Dollar Opinion Manufacturing Machine.

How can they live with themselves?

I know, don't ask. Psychopaths have no problem living with themselves.

Seriously?

If NCPB is an example of right-wing manipulation of the news, we have nothing to worry about! Take the recent late-night cogressional session postings on their site as an example. Maybe they are just trying so hard to APPEAR balanced that they ..., well, APPEAR balanced! And keep in mind thay they aren't writing anything, only posting from NC newspapers, some of which are simply bat#$?t crazy. But this is North Carolina and we are not that far removed from the Jesse Helms days. Again, if NCPB is as bad as it gets, CELEBRATE, then let's get back to work on being the change that we seek.

Great work, Greg

It's one thing to do news filtering on a blog (like ours), but to do so under the guise of a "neutral observer" news site is nothing but pure deception.

Hopefully this story will grow some legs, but I'm not holding my breath.

More to come

Thanks Steve. It's a sidebar to something bigger I've been working on.

Hey, they're looking for story ideas

ncpoliticalbeat@gmail.com.

Dear Beat.

There's a story developing at BlueNC about a scam news site in North Carolina run by Republican operatives ... a site that claims to be in no way affiliated with any partisan organization.

Maybe you can get some of your crack journalists to look into who's funding the site's operations in North Carolina. Maybe you can get those journalists to ask the owners why every Republican activist turns out to be a pathological liar.

Inquiring minds want to know.

Your pal,

James

I checked and they don't have a forum or any real

means for viewers to post content. God forbid someone tells the truth on their website about their website.

Would have been fun though!!

I actively oppose gerrymandering. Do you?

Nothing to see here

Folks who look for conspiracy theories usually find conspiracies. There's nothing to see here. I've been subscribing to NC Political Beat since its inception. It's hardly partisan--it's a link to a lot of political stories. If there's a bias, I don't see it, and I am a Democrat.

The comments here reflect the near total failure of anyone to actually use this service. It's a list of headlines from TV stations and newspapers in NC. That's all. So this raving about how they "editorialize" is not helpful. Might they filter out stories unfavorable to the GOP? Maybe, although I've seen no evidence of this.

Rather than chasing shadows, how about our party engage real issues?

I spent two hours scouring the site

and found it tilting very heavily in the Fox News direction. Maybe it was just a function of recent news, but its hard to imagine that being a coincidence.

That said, If corporate deception about funding and affiliations is not a "real issue," I don't know what is.

PS For the record, my name is James Protzman, and I am not a Democrat. Your name is "Anonymous," and any claims you make about party affiliation must be taken with a shaker of salt.

GOP consulting is a multi-million dollar business for them

If you think they would run a side operation like this without editorial controls to protect their clientele, that's just nuts.

And thanks for your advice on what issues we should focus on, but we're doing just fine. If you have something you feel needs covering that we're not already touching upon (or not as well as you'd like), have at it.