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‘This is something we take very seriously’

The Philadelphia radio host for whom the White House provided questions in advance of her interview with Joe Biden has been fired.

WURD Radio made the announcement Sunday concerning broadcaster Andrea Lawful-Sanders.

“On July 3, the first post-debate interview with President Joe Biden was arranged and negotiated independently by WURD Radio host Andrea Lawful-Sanders without knowledge, consultation or collaboration with WURD management,” said Sara Lomax, the station’s president and CEO.

“The interview featured pre-determined questions provided by the White House, which violates our practice of remaining an independent media outlet accountable to our listeners. As a result, Ms. Lawful-Sanders and WURD Radio have mutually agreed to part ways, effective immediately.”

Andrea Lawful-Sanders (Video screenshot)

Andrea Lawful-Sanders

Lomax said WURD “remains an independent voice that our audience can trust will hold elected officials accountable. As Pennsylvania’s only independent black-owned talk radio station, WURD Radio has cultivated that trust with our audience over our 20-year history.

“This is something we take very seriously. Agreeing to a pre-determined set of questions jeopardizes that trust and is not a practice that WURD Radio engages in or endorses as a matter of practice or official policy.”

She continued, saying her station “is not a mouthpiece for the Biden or any other administration. Internally, we will commit to reviewing our policies, procedures, and practices to reinforce WURD’s independence and trust with our listeners. But mainstream media should do its own introspection to explore how they have lost the trust of so many Americans, black Americans chief among them.”

“Black media matters. As always, we will listen, dialogue and engage with our community, bringing credible information, experts and insights to address the needs, concerns and interests of our people. This is essential as black Philadelphians gear up to be a pivotal player in one of the most consequential elections of our lifetime.”

In the pre-recorded interview that aired Thursday, Joe Biden famously told Lawful-Sanders he’s proud to be the first black woman to serve with a black president.

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