CNN’s Jake Tapper reiterated misleading topics of conversation promoted by the campaign of Democratic candidate for governor Terry McAuliffe on a segment of his daytime show on Tuesday.
Glenn Youngkin, McAuliffe’s Republican opponent, recently ran an ad indicting McAuliffe for vetoing a bill that would require schools to notify parents when teaching materials containing sexually explicit material would be used in the classroom. If a parent did not want their child exposed to the material, the bill required that “non-explicit instructional materials and related academic activities” be provided to the student.
The ad features Laura Murphy, a parent whose son has experience with Toni Morrison’s lover during McAuliffe’s first term as governor led to the passing of the aforementioned legislation. lover is an award-winning novel set in the pre-Civil War South, largely centered around the horrors of slavery. It contains violent, sexually explicit content, including graphic descriptions of rape.
McAuliffe’s campaign has claimed that Murphy’s presence in the ad is a “racist dog whistle”, despite the fact that neither lover nor the subject of race is mentioned in it, claiming that Youngkin supports “book bans,” despite the fact that the bill in question — backed by 18 Democrats and 14 members of the Black Legislative Caucus in the Virginia General Assembly — did not do all kinds of things. ban books.
These facts didn’t stop Tapper or CNN political reporter Eva McKend from aiding McAuliffe in his deceptive goals in the aforementioned segment, titled “The GOP Candidate’s New Ad Focuses on Iconic Book.” Hear what he left out.”
Tapper started by introducing the ad and played some clips from it. “What Murphy and Glenn Youngkin don’t tell you in that ad is that her son was in high school and the book she wanted to ban was Toni Morrison’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. lover.”
Enter McKend, who claimed Youngkin’s campaign rallies were filled with “parents and grandparents disapproved of by their local school boards” who “don’t like how the history of racism and the impact of racism is taught in Virginia public schools. ” The reporter continued to call lover “an important book in American history, is actually based on a true story, tells the harrowing history of slavery in this country,” with Tapper agreeing to say “yes!”
“I mean yes, of course parents need to have input and this is an issue where Glenn Youngkin has found traction, but at the same time this ad is specifically about the book loverTapper said, before reading the following tweet from Laura Coates, senior legal analyst at CNN.
The entire segment is constructed in such a way that viewers get three different, but clearly wrong impressions: that Youngkin supports book bans, that the ad was a “dog whistle” about the intersection of education and race, and that it is somehow representative of the Republican candidate’s broader stance on how to teach the history of racism.
At no point has Youngkin claimed to support a blanket ban on books, let alone a targeting one lover or other texts about the racial history of the United States. He has expressed his support for the bill that McAuliffe vetoed, but even if this bill was passed and its provisions were exercised in the context of the allocation of lover, other materials on the same topics would be distributed to students whose parents objected to the assignment.
Tapper might defend herself by noting that he specified that Murphy was the one who wanted the ban — she wanted to remove it from the curriculum temporarily until an opt-out system was put in place — but since neither he nor McKend had any information about the legislation itself, it would be easy to assume that Youngkin is also in favor of a ban. McAuliffe’s campaign has certainly gone to great lengths to advance that assumption, arguing that the Republican’s “closing message” is “banning books and silencing esteemed black authors.”
Youngkin has advocated a history curriculum that “will teach all history: the good and the bad”, stating that “America has fantastic chapters and it is the greatest country in the world, but we also have some horrific chapters in our history, we they have to learn it.”