Glenn Beck is almost unparalleled when it comes to hatching conspiracy theories (see: China owns America). But the conservative pundit occasionally highlights a conspiracy that becomes a genuine scandal. Last year, it was ACORN, which Beck repeatedly condemned before its pimp-prostitute scandal. Today, Beck had Debra Medina, the Tea Party gubernatorial candidate in Texas and rumored "9/11 Truther" on his radio program. Beck asked her point-blank whether she believed 9/11 was caused by the government, and her response included "well I don't have all the facts" and "there are some legitimate questions."
Though Medina quickly released a statement denying she was a "Truther," the damage has already been done. Conservative bloggers have scrambled to write Medina's epitaph, while liberals have couched their lukewarm praise for Beck in criticism of his other conspiracy theories.
- Medina's Heartbreak on Glenn Beck "I’d say that Medina’s hit the apex of her political career today," sums up Hot Air's Ed Morrissey.
- All Over for Medina Townhall's Meredith Jessup agrees with Morrissey. "Though he prefers not to 'endorse' candidates, conservative talker Glenn Beck today laid to rest the candidacy of Debra Medina," she writes.
- Good One, Glenn, But... "At the same time as he exposes Medina [...], Glenn Beck is heavily promoting David Barton and Wallbuilders, one of the most extreme theocratic groups currently operating in the US," argues True/Slant's Charles Johnson. Still, he admits, "Glenn Beck deserves some credit today."
- Only 'Good' Conspiracy Theories OK The American Prospect's Adam Serwer scornfully lists several conspiracies theories that "you're supposed to believe" in the Tea Party. "You can hardly blame tea-party folks if they get confused about which evidence-free conspiracy theories are OK, which ones you have to believe to be taken seriously as a member of the movement, and which evidence-free conspiracy theories might get you disavowed," he concludes. "It's confusing!"