The Justice Department’s Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) frequently disseminates to employees articles from the far-right website Breitbart News, internal DOJ memos obtained by The Young Turks show.
The memos, provided to TYT by a Justice Department official, are daily “morning briefing” emails sent from EOIR’s public affairs office to all employees. The briefings include articles with titles including, “Study: Sanctuary Cities Stop Deportation of Illegal Aliens from Terrorist-Sponsored Nations,” and “More Than Half a Million Illegal Aliens Expected to be Freed Into U.S. This Year.” The articles reflect a partisan tone, to say the least. For example, one article is titled, “GOP’s ‘Recycled Children’ Drama Beats Democrats’ ‘Family Separation’ Claim.”
Andrew Breitbart founded the eponymous Breitbart News in 2007. Ever since, it has been a lightning rod for controversy and has been the target of boycotts, including a particularly high-profile one by the activist group Sleeping Giants.
“We’re trying to defund bigotry,” a spokesman for Sleeping Giants told The Washington Post.
The Southern Poverty Law Center, a nonprofit group that monitors hate groups, has criticized Breitbart News for its “embrace of extremist ideas and racist tropes.”
“Its news coverage served as The New York Times for neo-Nazis,” the organization reported in 2017.
Steve Bannon, former White House Chief Strategist for President Trump, became executive chairman of Breitbart News in 2012. By 2016, Bannon declared the website “the platform for the alt-right.”
The Justice Department official who provided the memos did so on condition of anonymity to avoid professional reprisal. The official stressed that prior to the Trump administration the EOIR never used to include Breitbart articles in its roundups of media coverage.
EOIR did not immediately respond to a request for comment.