Type of site
|Founded||January 11, 2010|
|Headquarters||1050 17th Street NW Suite 900, Washington, D.C. 20036|
|Owner||The Daily Caller, Inc.|
Tucker Carlson (Founder)
|Alexa rank||785 (February 17, 2018[update])|
|Registration||Optional, required to comment|
|Launched||January 11, 2010|
The Daily Caller is a conservative American news and opinion website based in Washington, D.C. It was founded by political pundit Tucker Carlson and Neil Patel, former adviser to former Vice President Dick Cheney. The site's coverage includes politics, business, world news, entertainment, sports, education, technology, outdoors, and energy.
The Daily Caller launched on January 11, 2010, as a politically conservative news and commentary outlet and alternative to the liberal The Huffington Post, similarly featuring sections in broad range of subjects beyond politics. By late 2012, The New York Times reported that the site had quadrupled its page view and total audience and had become profitable without ever buying an advertisement for itself.
The Daily Caller was founded by Tucker Carlson and Neil Patel. After raising $3 million in funding from businessman Foster Friess, the website was launched on January 11, 2010. The organization started with a reporting staff of 21 in its Washington office.
By 2013, the site was receiving over 35 million views a month according to Quantcast, surpassing rival sites such as The Washington Times, Politico, and Forbes. The site has an active community, with over 200,000 comments made each month.
Notable figures have commented on The Daily Caller. Karl Rove said that, "The Daily Caller is necessary reading for anyone who wants to be up to speed with what's going on with politics in America." Larry Kudlow referred to the site as, "one of my faves."
The Daily Caller is in the White House rotating press pool and has full-time reporters on Capitol Hill. Notable staff and columnists include Ann Coulter and Ginni Thomas. In addition to these columnists, The Daily Caller has many contributors for a variety topics, including many prominent politicians, businessmen and academics.
The Daily Caller also hosts The Mirror, a blog written by former FishbowlDC editor and The Hill columnist Betsy Rothstein. The Mirror covers media in Washington D.C., news related to journalism organizations, as well as political and media related gossip. The tagline is, "Reflections of a self-obsessed city." DC Trawler is a blog by political humorist Jim Treacher.
When it first launched in January 2010, Mercedes Bunz, writing for The Guardian, said The Daily Caller was "setting itself up to be the conservative answer to The Huffington Post". According to Bunz, a year before the website launched, Carlson promoted it as "a new political website leaning more to the right than Politico and TalkingPointsMemo". However, at launch, he wrote a letter to readers that said it was not going to be a right-wing site. During a January 2010 interview with Politico, Carlson said The Daily Caller was not going to be tied to his personal political ideologies and that he wanted it to be "breaking stories of importance". In a Washington Post article about The Caller's launch, Howard Kurtz wrote, "[Carlson's] partner is Neil Patel, a former Dick Cheney aide. His opinion editor is Moira Bagley, who spent 2008 as the Republican National Committee's press secretary. And his $3 million in funding comes from Wyoming financier Foster Friess, a big-time GOP donor. But Carlson insists this won't be a right-wing site". Kurtz quoted Carlson as saying, "We're not enforcing any kind of ideological orthodoxy on anyone". In an interview with The New York Times, Carlson said that the vast majority of traditional reporting comes from a liberal point of view and called The Daily Caller's reporting "the balance against the rest of the conventional press".
In a 2012 Washingtonian article, Tom Bartlett said Carlson and Patel developed The Daily Caller as "a conservative news site in the mold of the liberal Huffington Post but with more firearms coverage and fewer nipple-slip slide shows". In February 2012, an internet marketing research firm found that a majority (64.8 percent) of The Daily Caller's site visitors to be self-identified political Republicans; of the remaining visitors, independents outnumbered Democrats 26.8 percent to 8.6 percent.
In March 2013 The Daily Caller posted interviews with two women claiming that New Jersey Democratic Senator Bob Menendez had paid them for sex while he was a guest of a campaign donor. The allegation came five days before the 2012 New Jersey senate election. News organizations such as ABC News, which had also interviewed the women, the New York Times, and the New York Post declined to publish the allegations, viewing them as unsubstantiated and lacking credibility. Subsequently, one of the women who accused Menendez stated that she had been paid to falsely implicate the senator and had never met him. Menendez's office described the allegations as "manufactured" by a right-wing blog as a politically motivated smear.
A few weeks later, police in the Dominican Republic announced that three women had claimed they were paid $300–425 each to lie about having had sex with Menendez. Dominican law enforcement also alleged that the women had been paid to lie about Menendez by an individual claiming to work for The Daily Caller. The Daily Caller denied this allegation, stating: "At no point did any money change hands between The Daily Caller and any sources or individuals connected with this investigation". Describing what it saw as the unraveling of The Daily Caller's "scoop", the Poynter Institute wrote: The Daily Caller stands by its reports, though apparently doesn't feel the need to prove its allegations right".
In March 2015 The Daily Caller columnist Mickey Kaus quit after editor Tucker Carlson refused to run a column critical of Fox News coverage of the immigration policy debate. Carlson, who also works for Fox, reportedly did not want The Daily Caller publishing criticism of a firm that employed him. Journalist Neil Munro quit two weeks later.
According to a study by Harvard University's Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society, The Daily Caller was among the most popular sites on the right during the 2016 presidential election. The study also found that The Daily Caller provided "amplification and legitimation" for "the most extreme conspiracy sites", such as Truthfeed, Infowars, Gateway Pundit and Conservative Treehouse during the 2016 presidential election. The Daily Caller also "employed anti-immigrant narratives that echoed sentiments from the alt-right and white nationalists but without the explicitly racist and pro-segregation language." The Daily Caller also played a significant role in creating and disseminating stories that had little purchase outside the right-wing media ecosystem but that stoked the belief among core Trump followers that what Clinton did was not merely questionable but criminal and treasonous. In a campaign that expressed deep anti-Muslim sentiment, a repeated theme was that Hillary Clinton was seriously in hock to Muslim nations. In one of its most frequently shared stories, The Daily Caller falsely asserted that Morocco’s King Mohammed VI flew Bill Clinton on a private jet, and that this had been omitted from the Clinton Foundation's tax disclosures. The Daily Caller also made the "utterly unsubstantiated and unsourced claim" that Hillary Clinton got Environmental Protection Agency "head Lisa Jackson to try to shut down Mosaic Fertilizer, described as America’s largest phosphate mining company, in exchange for a $15 million donation to the Clinton Foundation from King Mohammed VI of Morocco, ostensibly to benefit Morocco’s state-owned phosphate company."
In January 2017, The Daily Caller posted a video which encouraged violence against protesters. The video in question showed a car plowing through protesters, with the headline "Here's A Reel Of Cars Plowing Through Protesters Trying To Block The Road" and set to a cover of Ludacris' "Move Bitch." The video drew attention in August 2017 when a white supremacist plowed his car through a group of counterprotesters at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville. After the video attracted attention, The Daily Caller deleted it from its website.
The Southern Poverty Law Center subsequently criticized The Daily Caller, saying that it had a "white nationalist problem". SPLC also said that two other contributors to The Daily Caller had ties to white nationalist groups.
The Daily Caller has posted articles by Jason Kessler, a white supremacist who organized a rally of hundreds of white nationalists in Charlottesville. Before Kessler posted his article, it was known that he had spoken at white supremacist gatherings. After Kessler received attention for his organizing of the Charlottesville white supremacist rally, the Daily Caller removed his articles from its website, but The Daily Caller executive editor defended Kessler's articles.
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