Ed Schultz Spills: A Lot of Liberals Listen to NPR, 'Huge' in D.C., New York

MSNBC host and radio talker Ed Schultz gave a "What I Read" interview to The Atlantic, but the reading list was less interesting than his complaining about how talk radio is owned by conservatives: "Citadel doesn't do liberal talk radio. Bonneville doesn't do liberal talk radio. The Salem Radio Network, same thing." Of course, he admitted, If Ed Schultz owned 600 radio stations, I can guarantee you Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity or any other right-wing hack job would not be on my stations. But until liberals go out and buy signals, you're not going to get a lot of liberal talk radio."

Then Schultz admitted where liberal radio is located. It's at the left end of the dial. "I don't buy that there are more conservative listeners than liberal listeners. A lot of the liberal listeners are listening to NPR. In Washington or New York City, the NPR station has huge listenership. That's where most of the liberal audience is and that's who we, the commercial liberal format, have to peel away listeners from. This industry is ideologically-driven. That's the culture of it."

Say, Ed, why don't you call for defunding NPR, which might improve the business climate for commercial liberal radio? I'm guessing your socialist audience won't go for that idea.

Ed is not at all about attracting the mushy middle: "The hosts out there that think they can strike a chord with the middle of the road people have it all wrong. What's the middle of the road position on universal health care? What's the middle of the road position on having the wealthy pay taxes? What's the middle of the road position on fighting foreign wars? Liberal radio has identified absolutes. If you're true to your conviction, I think you can run a business in this industry."

Actually, "What I Read" isn't exactly a great title for this lecture, since he only identifies -- yawn -- that he reads The Huffington Post, The Washington Post, and The New York Times, and he's not "a big magazine reader." He identifies more with broadcasters, praising Andy Rooney and despite the political disagreement, Paul Harvey.

Tim Graham
Tim Graham
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis