Political journalists let sources review their stories prior to publication, a senior Democratic spokesman confirmed on Wednesday.
"[Whispers] yes, people do it," Brian Fallon wrote on Twitter, the popular social networking website. Fallon has served as public relations guru for prominent Democrats including Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.), former attorney general Eric Holder, and failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.
Fallon was responding to the journalistic controversy surrounding ESPN's Adam Schefter. The reporter was being criticized after emails revealed Schefter had let an NFL executive review his story on the league's 2011 lockout prior to publication.
"Please let me know if you see anything that should be added, changed, tweaked," Schefter wrote to Bruce Allen, the then general manager of the then Washington Redskins. "Thanks, Mr. Editor, for that and the trust. Plan to file this to ESPN about 6 a.m."
Professional journalists claimed to be aghast at the revelation. "ESPN’s Adam Schefter crosses a journalistic line," the Poynter Institute scolded. The nonprofit journalism school and research organization is best known for advising journalists to "take time to be sexual with yourself" in order to alleviate the trauma of covering politics.
"I have never, ever, ever sent sources an unpublished story, even in the 'name of accuracy,'" wrote Seung Min Kim, a White House reporter for the Washington Post. Her colleague Tony Romm chimed in with a definite assessment: "Literally no one does this, this shit gets you fired anywhere else."
Enter Fallon, perhaps one of the most experienced individuals when it comes to dealing with the Washington, D.C., press corps. "Yes, people do it," he confirmed, shattering the self-image of professional journalists who fancy themselves objective truth warriors immune to partisan motivations.
The veteran spokesman, who serves as executive director of Demand Justice, a George Soros-funded dark money group that promotes radical reforms such as court packing, declined to elaborate or name names. The cozy relationship between professional journalists and professional Democratic activists wasn't exactly a secret.
On Wednesday, the Daily Mail reported that journalism icon Katie Couric withheld portions of her 2016 interview with Ruth Bader Ginsburg to "protect" the late Supreme Court Justice from criticism. Despite the objections of the president of ABC News, Couric declined to air Ginsburg's most inflammatory comments about black athletes kneeling during the national anthem.
Ginsburg, a hero among many left-wing activists, had said the kneeling athletes showed a "contempt for a government that has made it possible for their parents and grandparents to live a decent life, which they probably could not have lived in the places they came from."
Couric described feeling "conflicted" about her decision. She was technically a journalist, but also a "big RBG fan," and the justice's comments seemed "unworthy of a crusader for equality." Ultimately, the journalist's fandom for the liberal icon prevailed, and the controversial remarks were omitted.
Meanwhile, elite journalists such as CNN's Brian Stelter continue to be flummoxed by the public's lack of trust in mainstream media sources. According to a recent Gallup survey, 63 percent of Americans said they have "not very much" trust in the media or "none at all."
Stelter, an ostensibly serious person, suggested Fox News was to blame.