The Biggest #NoMames So Far from the Boston Media: The Herald’s Welfare Story About Alleged Bomber

Apr 24, 2013
12:05 AM

The Boston Herald is Boston’s second newspaper, and for those who live in the city, it is seen as just a tabloid with car ads that rarely covers actual news with a journalistic eye, choosing instead for the sensational. Such is the case of a story the Herald published today by Chris Cassidy. The title? “Tamerlan Tsarnaev got Mass. welfare benefits.”

Tamerlan Tsarnaev - American Life of Boston bombing suspect

The story begins:

Marathon bombings mastermind Tamerlan Tsarnaev was living on taxpayer-funded state welfare benefits even as he was delving deep into the world of radical anti-American Islamism, the Herald has learned.

State officials confirmed last night that Tsarnaev, slain in a raging gun battle with police last Friday, was receiving benefits along with his wife, Katherine Russell Tsarnaev, and their 3-year-old daughter. The state’s Executive Office of Health and Human Services said those benefits ended in 2012 when the couple stopped meeting income eligibility limits. Russell Tsarnaev’s attorney has claimed Katherine — who had converted to Islam — was working up to 80 hours a week as a home health aide while Tsarnaev stayed at home.

In addition, both of Tsarnaev’s parents received benefits, and accused brother bombers Dzhokhar and Tamerlan were recipients through their parents when they were younger, according to the state.

The news raises questions over whether Tsarnaev financed his radicalization on taxpayer money.


Cassidy then begins to weave the tale of how Tsarnaev became more “radicalized” and how he was a ward of the state. It continues:

The state did not say when the Tsarnaevs began receiving benefits. But Health and Human Services spokesman Alec Loftus said the Tsarnaevs “were not receiving transitional assistance benefits at the time of the incident,” a reference to the marathon bombing that killed three and injuring 260. Loftus declined to specify what kinds of benefits and the amount of benefits the family received.

Their taxpayer-funded status came to light last night after repeated calls and emails to welfare officials from the Herald. They refused to comment throughout the day, but pressure mounted last night when the Herald started asking lawmakers whether the Department of Transitional Assistance should release the info.

So here is the narrative the Herald is trying to spin: radical foreigner took your hard-earned tax dollars and then tried to blow you up. Even though his benefits ran out last year and that welfare “connection” means nothing at all and has no relevance.

We can only imagine what the conservative talk shows will be saying tomorrow.

And you wonder why we are not progressing as a nation. A sad sad statement.