PBS fires former employee following Project Veritas video exposing ‘hateful rhetoric’
Mary Margaret Olohan, DCNF
PBS is distancing itself from a former employee featured in a Project Veritas video who appeared to defend violent attacks on the White House, proposed re-education for the children of President Donald Trump supporters, and praised the COVID-19 deaths of GOP voters.
“This employee no longer works for PBS,” a PBS spokesperson told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “As a mid-level staff attorney, he did not speak on behalf of our organization, nor did he make any editorial decisions.”
“There is no place for hateful rhetoric at PBS, and this individual’s views in no way reflect our values or opinions,” the spokesperson said. “We strongly condemn violence and will continue to do what we have done for 50 years — use our national platform and local presence to strengthen communities and bring people together.”
PBS did not clarify to the DCNF whether the employee was fired as a result of the video. Project Veritas tweeted Tuesday afternoon that former PBS principal counsel Michael Beller had been fired.
— Project Veritas (@Project_Veritas) January 12, 2021
Project Veritas published a video Tuesday that allegedly shows Beller saying, “We go for all the Republican voters and Homeland Security will take their children away…we’ll put them into the re-education camps.”
Another clip shows Beller allegedly discussing “enlightenment camps,” saying, “They’re nice, they have Sesame Street characters in the classrooms, and they watch PBS all day.”
“Americans are so f*cking dumb,” Beller allegedly said in the video. “You know, most people are dumb. It’s good to live in a place [Washington, D.C.] where people are educated and know stuff. Could you imagine if you lived in one of these other towns or cities where everybody’s just stupid?”
The video also shows Beller allegedly saying, “What’s great is that COVID is spiking in all the red states right now. So that’s great…a lot of them [red state voters] are sick and dying.”
It’s still unclear if Beller was speaking in his own voice, interpreting how GOP voters feel, or recounting something he’d heard.