Trump Calls for Resignations in NYT Newsroom over Fraudulent Kavanaugh Smear That Went Viral


On Sunday, The New York Times published a piece in which the two authors of a forthcoming book about Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh dug up a second allegation of sexual misconduct against him from his time at Yale.

“We also uncovered a previously unreported story about Mr. Kavanaugh in his freshman year that echoes Ms. Ramirez’s allegation. A classmate, Max Stier, saw Mr. Kavanaugh with his pants down at a different drunken dorm party, where friends pushed his penis into the hand of a female student,” the authors wrote in the piece.

It didn’t take long for the news to spread like wildfire across social media. There were immediate calls for an investigation. Impeachment was bandied about by multiple Democratic presidential candidates.

And then came a bit of information that probably should have been in the piece in the first place but wasn’t: It turns out the woman at the center of the allegation refused to be interviewed, and her friends say she didn’t even remember the incident ever happening.

Whoops. The information was added and The Times appended an editor’s note to the piece, but the damage was done.

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As the story was falling apart in real time, President Trump was in New Mexico on Monday for a campaign-style rally, where he used the accusation to call for resignations in The Times’ newsroom over the story.

“The left tries to threaten, bully, intimidate Americans into submission,” Trump told the crowd.

“They use Democrat prosecutors and phony congressional committees whenever they can. They’ll do whatever they can to demean you, to libel you. They try to blacklist, coerce, cancel or destroy anyone who gets in their way. Look at what they’re doing today to Justice Kavanaugh,” he said, eliciting cheers.

Do you think those involved in this story should resign?

“Did you see what Democrats — they’re calling for his resignation. They’re calling for his impeachment, and the woman involved said she didn’t know anything,” he said. “So The New York Times had to put out a major apology, and they had to change their story … and [the Democrats] still want him to be impeached!”

“And he’s a great man by the way, a great talent, a great brilliant man, Brett Kavanaugh,” Trump continued, saying that he had put out a statement on social media asking for those involved in the story to lose their jobs at the paper.

“I don’t think they’ll do it but they should for the good of the nation,” Trump said.

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“I call for the resignation of everybody at The New York Times involved in the Kavanaugh smear story, and while you’re at it, the Russian witch hunt hoax, which is just as phony a story,” Trump said.

“They’ve taken the old Grey Lady … so prestigious … and broken her down, destroyed her virtue and ruined her reputation. She can never recover, and will never return to greatness under current management. The Times is dead, long live The New York Times.”

“Think of it: They wrote a story about somebody that said, ‘She doesn’t remember this,'” Trump added.

Trump had previously tweeted his support of Kavanaugh, saying that “[h]e is an innocent man who has been treated HORRIBLY.”

The Times tried to answer readers’ questions about the Kavanaugh piece — which seemed like little more than a rehash of Deborah Ramirez’s allegations used as a pretext to unveil the new allegation — while assiduously avoiding any questions that dealt with the major controversy regarding the information that was left out.

In fact, the authors of the book say the information about the fact that the second woman refused to be interviewed and that her friends say she didn’t remember the incident was in the first draft of their piece, but the editors at The Times took it out.

“In your draft of the article, did it include those words that have since been added to the article?” MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell asked on Monday night.

“It did,” authors Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly responded.

“So somewhere in the editing process, those words were trimmed,” O’Donnell said in clarification.

This is hardly surprising. A thinly sourced allegation along with an article that told us very little new information about Ramirez’s allegation wouldn’t exactly be a hit.

It’s difficult to see any universe in which that information would be extraneous, either.

An omission like this ought to result in some resignations or firings. The president is probably right, though I wouldn’t hold my breath.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture