Politics & Government

Anti-Semitic article on NC attorney general draws attention to a group that shared the link

A screenshot of the Carolina Plott Hound website
A screenshot of the Carolina Plott Hound website N.C. Policy Watch

The conservative Civitas Institute is facing criticism for its website linking to an article that says Attorney General Josh Stein’s stance on immigration is due to his Jewish faith.

A link to the article appeared on Carolina Plott Hound, a Drudge Report-style news aggregation site that Civitas bought several years ago. The website doesn’t list its affiliation with Civitas, but Civitas president Francis De Luca has said his organization owns the site and employs its editor.

The article Plott Hound promoted as its lead headline says Stein joined a lawsuit challenging the Trump administration’s decision to end DACA because he “is acting in accordance with the worldview and ethnic interests of his own particular group – i.e., those within contemporary Judaism. Stein is a reform Jew. Those from within his own ethnic group want the Christian majority with roots in western countries to be numerically diluted.”

DACA is the Obama administration’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program that has protected immigrants brought into the country illegally as children.

Rob Schofield of the liberal N.C. Policy Watch called on Civitas to condemn the comments about Stein, saying the linked article from Triad Conservative is “chock full of some of the most egregious examples of paranoid xenophobia and anti-Semitism that one could imagine.”

“Let’s hope, however, that all of the (Civitas funder Art) Pope organization leaders – and Pope himself – speak up quickly, publicly and forcefully to permanently disavow both the Plott Hound and the Triad Conservative as well as the scurrilous and anti-Semitic garbage they are shoveling,” Schofield wrote on the Policy Watch website.

On Friday, De Luca said the headline doesn’t reflect his organization’s views on Stein, and he said he’ll be reviewing the future of the Plott Hound website.

“The truth is, the person who edits it sometimes doesn’t use the best judgment,” De Luca said. “We’re going to review all the policies that surround it, and we’ll also consider whether it fits into the overall mission of what we’re doing. It may be something that we get rid of or we change what it is.”

“I’m sorry Policy Watch was offended by it, but they’re easily offended. We would never intentionally be derogatory towards anybody or any religion or ethnicity.”

The Stein article isn’t the first time that Plott Hound has linked to controversial blog posts and reposted their headlines. Last year, the banner headline on the site called a departing News & Observer editor who is African-American a “doo rag queen” who was leaving the “N&O plantation.”

As of Thursday afternoon, the headline about Stein was no longer on the Plott Hound website.

Colin Campbell: 919-829-4698, @RaleighReporter