April 5, 2017

Alleged: Haberman at the NY Times Sat on Susan Rice Unmasking Story

In a claim which echoes episodes from the 1990s but is arguably even worse, blogger Mike Cernovich has alleged that information in his Sunday evening tweeted scoop reporting that “Susan Rice requested unmasking of incoming Trump administration officials” was known for some time by reporter Maggie Haberman at the New York Times. Specifically, in his full late Sunday post at Medium.com, Cernovich claimed that he was “informed that … Haberman has had this story about Susan Rice for at least 48 hours, and has chosen to sit on it in an effort to protect the reputation of former President Barack Obama.”

The Times promised to turn over a new leaf shortly after Donald Trump’s election in November, after documents released through WikiLeaks during the presidential campaign and the paper’s own brazenly partisan reporting made it obvious that their primary mission had been to simultaneously elect Hillary Clinton and thoroughly discredit Trump.

In what would surprise no one even casually aware of the paper’s history, Haberman, if Cernovich’s allegation is true, hasn’t lived up to the promise, and the Times, assuming that it’s monitoring her work, has played right along.

As seen in several NewsBusters and other posts from during and after the campaign, Haberman has been — and, based on Cernovich’s contention, continues to be — an agenda-driven partisan who wishes to manage and control the news, not report it:

  • On October 9, Curtis Houck noted that Clinton campaign correspondence obtained by “Guccifer 2.0″ tagged Haberman as “a ‘friendly journalist’ who, naturally, previously had ‘teed up’ pieces for them with a record of ‘never’ letting them down.”
  • On September 18, Nicholas Fondacaro, concerning the Obama “birther” rumors which first surfaced during the 2008 presidential campaign, observed Haberman claiming that “Hillary Clinton never talked about this, her campaign aides never talked about this publicly.” That was a cleverly worded but dishonest dodge. Even liberal news outlets have acknowledged that “That theory first emerged in the spring of 2008, as Clinton supporters circulated an anonymous email questioning Obama’s citizenship.” Her contention was particularly astonishing because less than two weeks earlier, as Brad Wilmouth noted in his words, Haberman “admitted that the conspiracy theories questioning whether President Barack Obama was born in the United States and legally eligible to be President began with members of Hillary Clinton’s 2008 campaign while conservatives were mostly rejecting the issue.”
  • As seen in a July post, Haberman played a pivotal role as the Times downplayed, delayed and spun its coverage of the infamous Bill Clinton-Loretta Lynch Phoenix airport encounter.
  • Last but certainly not least, the WikiLeaks “Guccifer 2.0″ documents exposed Haberman as an RSVP’d participant at two off-the-record, liberal media-only Hillary Clinton pre-campaign announcement events. Haberman and Times colleague Amy Chozik are the only reporters whose names are on the RSVP list for both events. The purpose of these events — one at campaign manager John Podesta’s house on April 9, 2015 and the other described as “(Clinton campaign chief strategist Joel) Benenson’s cocktails” on April 10 — was “framing the HRC message and framing the race.”

The current alleged story-suppressing behavior at the Times echoes vain attempts by the establishment press which attempted to protect a Democratic president from his proven misdeeds two decades ago.

As seen in a February 2008 column by Howard Kurtz, who was then at the Washington Post:

In 1994, The Post spent three months investigating Paula Jones’s charge that Clinton, while Arkansas governor, had asked her for oral sex in a hotel room. Conservative critics accused the paper of sitting on the story. The Post ran a front-page piece after Jones sued Clinton (a move that ultimately led to his impeachment after he dissembled before a grand jury about his relationship with [Monica] Lewinsky).

By incompletely telling the story, Kurtz was far too kind to his own paper.

The American Spectator, in an item (“His Cheatin’ Heart”) originally published in January 1994, described a “Paula,” who, according to an Arkansas state trooper assigned to protect then-Governor Bill Clinton, had a “(sexual) encounter with Clinton, which lasted no more than an hour as the trooper stood by in the hall, (after which) the trooper said Paula told him she was available to be Clinton’s regular girlfriend if he so desired.”

This reporting, at odds with what Jones knew actually happened, triggered her February 1994 press conference at CPAC, and ultimately her May 6, 1994 lawsuit. But six weeks before that lawsuit appeared, the Washington Times reported that the Post had been sitting on their Jones story over the heated objections of the assigned reporter, who had been suspended:


(Note: “Three months later” referred to the amount of time which had passed since Jones’s CPAC appearance.)

In other words, the Post didn’t publish the story until it knew that a lawsuit was days away from being filed.

The Post’s then-sister publication Newsweek also originally spiked the best-known story of marital infidelity during Bill Clinton’s presidency involving Monica Lewinsky, also by Isikoff (yes, the same reporter), as Matt Drudge reported on the New Media history-making night of January 17, 1998:


At the last minute, at 6 p.m. on Saturday evening, NEWSWEEK magazine killed a story that was destined to shake official Washington to its foundation: A White House intern carried on a sexual affair with the President of the United States!

The DRUDGE REPORT has learned that reporter Michael Isikoff developed the story of his career, only to have it spiked by top NEWSWEEK suits hours before publication. A young woman, 23, sexually involved with the love of her life, the President of the United States, since she was a 21-year-old intern at the White House. She was a frequent visitor to a small study just off the Oval Office where she claims to have indulged the president’s sexual preference. Reports of the relationship spread in White House quarters and she was moved to a job at the Pentagon, where she worked until last month. …

Drudge’s post forced out the story Newsweek had attempted to kill. Isikoff got all the establishment press credit and kudos for breaking the news. We all know better.

It would be easy to claim that Maggie Haberman’s alleged behavior at the Times shows that nothing has changed. Actually, if true — and that is the default, given the establishment press’s history and Cernovich’s understanding that the Times ”plans (a) Page 1 hate article” on him — it shows that establishment press journalism has deteriorated even further since Bill Clinton’s time in office.

Once again, there’s a reporter with perhaps “the story of her career” being spiked. But this time, unlike Isikoff, who by all accounts aggressively pursued publication of the results of his efforts, Haberman self-spiked out of apparent loyalty to the greater far-left progressive cause, secure in the knowledge that her agenda-driven management wouldn’t question her judgment, or her abandonment of the “Real Journalism” to which the Times has obviously falsely proclaimed its dedication.


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