Deleted Biden video sets off a crisis at Voice of America – By Daniel Lippman (Politico) / July 30 2020
The taxpayer-funded outlet is grappling with the fallout from a video post deemed too favorable to the former vice president, setting off recriminations and suspicion amid a shakeup.
Voice of America is weighing a suspension of four contractors who were involved in publishing a story and video that was deemed too favorable to Joe Biden’s presidential campaign, according to two people familiar with the matter.
On July 22, VOA’s Urdu service, which is targeted to Urdu-speaking audiences in Pakistan, India and around the world, posted content on its website, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages about an online event Biden did reaching out to Muslim Americans as he urged them to vote for him in November. Top VOA officials, reviewing the material after red flags were raised about it externally, found it violated the network’s editorial policies and ordered it taken down.
In the two-minute video, subtitled in Urdu and overlaid with music, Biden says: “Your voice is your vote, your vote is your voice. Muslim Americans’ voices matter. I’ll be a president that seeks out and incorporates and listens to the ideas and concerns of Muslim Americans on everyday issues that matter most to our communities. That will include having Muslim American voices as part of my administration.”
The footage, which also includes a brief shot of Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), was clipped liberally from the livestream of Emgage Action’s Million Muslim Votes virtual conference earlier this month, for which Biden provided a video. Emgage Action is a left-leaning 501c(4) group that has endorsed Biden and “seeks to mobilize American Muslims to advocate for issues that define who American Muslims are by what they stand for,” according to its website.