Valley Public Radio - Live Audio

A Look Inside The 40-Page Nunes Mailer Targeting The Fresno Bee

Oct 2, 2018

A few weeks ago, you might have heard our interview with Vice News reporter Alexandra Jaffe about the ongoing contention between Tulare County Congressman Devin Nunes and The Fresno Bee. After The Bee published a handful of stories about Nunes’s investments and public image, he responded by calling the paper a “left wing rag.” He also aired a 2-minute television and radio ad claiming the Bee is on a “crusade” against him.

Then, late last week, the Nunes campaign sent out a thick, glossy, full-color mailer to voters in his district. It refers to The Fresno Bee as a “propaganda machine” and critiques specific reports by The Bee, in some cases calling out staff with names and photos. It also implicates Bee reporters in organizing rallies and siding with Nunes’s opponent, Fresno County Prosecutor Andrew Janz. Ultimately, the mailer accuses The Bee of being nothing more than a source of fake news propaganda.

The mailer is 40 full-color pages of text, photos, newspaper clippings and testimonials from Valley residents, business owners and Republican political commentators.
Credit Kerry Klein / Valley Public Radio

Because of its unusual size and scope, we decided to break this mailer down and give it some context. Listen to the audio for a discussion between FM89’s Kerry Klein and Laura Tsutsui, featuring commentary from Fresno State political scientist Lisa Bryant and a response from Fresno Bee Editor Joe Kieta. The Nunes campaign didn’t respond to multiple requests for comment. 

You can find the full mailer here.