Media Criticism

New York Times Editor Excuses Paper's Slow Tara Reade Coverage: 'Kavanaugh Was a Running, Hot Story'

Dean Baquet's argument for proceeding cautiously with Joe Biden but not with Brett Kavanaugh isn't very persuasive.


New York Times media columnist Ben Smith asked his boss—Executive Editor Dean Baquet—to explain why it took the paper 19 days to acknowledge Tara Reade's sexual assault allegation against Joe Biden.

Smith should be commended for raising tough questions about why Reade was handled so differently than Brett Kavanaugh's accusers. Baquet's defense of this disparate treatment collapses under the most basic scrutiny.

The delay, according to Baquet, was because the Times proceeded cautiously, conducting its own reporting in order to gather all the information a reader would need "to think about what to make of this thing." Simply noting that Reade, a former Biden staffer, has claimed that he sexually assaulted her in 1993, was less important than getting the story "as close to right as we could."

That's all well and good, though, as I have noted several times, this was not the approach the Times took with Kavanaugh's accusers, whose allegations were publicized by the paper as they came to light, generally without additional or original reporting.

To his credit, Smith raised this very issue with Baquet, and the answer was enlightening:

I've been looking at The Times's coverage of Justice Brett M. Kavanaugh. I want to focus particularly on the Julie Swetnick allegations. She was the one who was represented by Michael Avenatti and who suggested that Kavanaugh had been involved in frat house rapes, and then appeared to walk back elements of her allegations. The Times wrote that story the same day she made the allegation, noting that "none of Ms. Swetnick's claims could be independently corroborated."

Why was Kavanaugh treated differently?

Kavanaugh was already in a public forum in a large way. Kavanaugh's status as a Supreme Court justice was in question because of a very serious allegation. And when I say in a public way, I don't mean in the public way of Tara Reade's. If you ask the average person in America, they didn't know about the Tara Reade case. So I thought in that case, if The New York Times was going to introduce this to readers, we needed to introduce it with some reporting and perspective. Kavanaugh was in a very different situation. It was a live, ongoing story that had become the biggest political story in the country. It was just a different news judgment moment….

But do you think looking back that The Times hewed to its standards both on Kavanaugh and on Biden, even though the treatment in the moment was so different?

I do. The standard, to be really simple, is that we try to give the reader the best information we can come up with at the time. And we try to give the reader the information they need to make their own judgments. Unless we can make the judgment. And Kavanaugh was a running, hot story. I don't think it's that the ethical standards were different. I think the news judgments had to be made from a different perspective in a running hot story.

This is deeply unpersuasive. The accusations against Kavanaugh were a "running, hot story" in part because the media covered them aggressively from the outset. Reade's story might well be running and hot if the Times treated her as it treated Christine Blasey Ford.

Case in point: In the midst of the Kavanaugh cycle, Times columnist Michelle Goldberg thanked Ford for her heroism. Here was how Goldberg described Ford's retelling of the incident with Kavanaugh: "Her soft voice cracked as she spoke. She smiled a lot; her attempts to make everyone see how agreeable and reasonable she is were heart-rending. But she was also poised and precise, occasionally speaking as an expert—she's a psychology professor—as well as a victim. Watching her push through her evident terror was profoundly inspiring." The column was titled "Christine Blasey Ford's Sacrifice."

Goldberg has now weighed in on Reade's allegation. The words "hero" and "sacrifice" do not appear in this column, which is titled "What To Do With Tara Reade's Allegation Against Joe Biden?" The tone makes clear that Goldberg views Reade as an inconvenience who must be dealt with. And the villain of this story is not Biden but "those using this strange, sad story to hector feminists into pretending to a certainty they have no reason to feel." Goldberg asserts that they are "trolling the #MeToo movement" and acting in bad faith.

I'm not so sure. Is it trolling to hold feminist activists, for whom "believe all women" is an important slogan, to their convictions? Perhaps feminist organizations—recall that Planned Parenthood and NARAL both tweeted "We still believe Julie Swetnick #BelieveSurvivors" weeks after her allegation fell apart—should have anticipated being called out for this obvious double standard.

In her latest column, Goldberg comes off as quite skeptical of Reade, in large part because Reade previously expressed kooky pro-Russia views:

Reade seems almost engineered in a lab to inspire skepticism in mainstream Democrats, both because her story keeps changing and because of her bizarre public worship of President Vladimir Putin of Russia. "President Putin has an alluring combination of strength with gentleness," she wrote in a since-deleted 2018 Medium post. "His sensuous image projects his love for life, the embodiment of grace while facing adversity." (Reade has since said her comments about Russia stemmed from a novel she was writing, though the Medium article is written as an op-ed essay.) In December she tweeted, with worrying grandiosity, "I worked for the Senate, I know the plan to bring Russia to its knees."

I've heard from other mainstream journalists that Reade's fangirling over Putin is an important part of what's giving them pause—this mattered a great deal to Salon's Amanda Marcotte, for example. But no one has articulated a particularly compelling case for why Reade's political views are relevant to her accusation about Biden.

This is not to say that Reade's account should be readily believed. The biggest issue is not merely that she waited so long to come forward, but that she misled journalists about what allegedly happened to her. The Washington Post made the best case for moving slowly with respect to the Reade story in its justifiably careful piece. The Post spoke with Reade last year about alleged sexual harassment in Biden's offices, and she stated definitively:

"This is what I want to emphasize: It's not [Biden]. It's the people around him who keep covering for him," Reade said, adding later, "For instance, he should have known what was happening to me….Looking back now, that's my criticism. Maybe he could have been a little more in touch with his own staff."

Reade was referring to alleged bullying, not alleged sexual assault. But she clearly gives the impression here that Biden himself is not the person responsible for whatever wrongdoings she allegedly suffered. If I were a Post reporter and Reade had given me the above quote a year ago, I would be quite perturbed that her story has since changed so dramatically.

These are important issues that are well worth scrutiny from the Post, the Times, and other journalistic outlets. It is not an indictment of the media that they are proceeding cautiously with Reade. But it's ludicrous to contend, as Baquet does, that the same standard is being exercised in this case as was exercised in Kavanaugh's.

Related: This is hardly the first time Baquet has failed to acquit himself well in a question of double standards. Read Matt Welch on the Times' handling of images that are offensive to Muslims vs. images that are offensive to Christians.

NEXT: Under Pandemic Lockdowns, Bartending Is Illegal. Is This the New Prohibition?

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  1. We all know why.

    1. Yeap. FYTW.

    2. The WaPo may be the DNC’s Pravda, but the NYT is its Izvestia.

      I don’t think there’s another political party on the planet that has as many different media outlets acting as its party organ.

      1. Why do you think the PRC is sending its proxies to Trump’s pressers? They’re looking for examples to emulate.

    3. ‘Kavanaugh Was a Running, Hot Story’

      The #EnemyOfThePeople ran with the Kavanaugh Story and made it a Running, Hot Story because we made it a Running, Hot Story.

      i.e., BFYTW.

    4. The only National Media I have and trust in for honesty is OANNews. I use to trust FOX but some of the hires they have made has me very concerned.

    5. I agree that more needs to be done about the coverage of accusations of sexual assault that are not newsworthy during a political campaign (of any party), because even if I believe Tara Reade I also believe her story is politically motivated and therefore should not be taken as seriously as someone who sought justice or therapy prior to a person’s candidacy. However outlets such as Fox lend credence to such outrageous stories that have no credibility so frequently that Republicans holding office will cite them on national television. Unfortunately if the game is unfair it’s hard to get anyone to play by the rules. I don’t think Baquet hides his liberal bias.

    6. This; if only people took this knowledge and did something with it. Like dropping their financial support of the Times.

  2. ” . . . isn’t very persuasive.”

    You spelled “is total bullshit” wrong.

  3. Why the fuck is anyone approaching this as such a mystery? Biden is left’s political candidate. They are not going to kneecap their own guy. Kavanaugh was an enemy, so they did all they could to destroy him. Biden is a friend, so they’ll ignore it all.

    Did anyone really believe the entire #poundmetoo movement was anything other than temporary political opportunism?

    1. No one with any brains did. But, this Robby writing here. So, there is that.

      Yeah, the Biden allegation is old but it is not as old as the Kavenaugh one, is much more detailed, and occurred when Biden was in the Senate as opposed to when he was in high school. If you think the Ford bullshit was worth reporting, then you have to think the Biden allegation is an even bigger story. Unless that is, you are a partisan piece of shit who works for a place like the New York Times. Then you can pretend it is okay to ignore the Biden story for Reasons.

    2. The worst thing that ever happened to Feminism was Bill Clinton. Prior to the Monica Lewinsky hearings, feminists were taking down CEOs of fortune 500 companies because they had affairs with their secretaries. The movement was quickly speeding into the sort of SJW gender-diversity that we are at today. But this was in 1996.

      But then Feminists had to sell out their cause for a man. They had to get on the news and explain why Bill Clinton was different. How a creepy old person who happens to be the “Most Powerful Man in the World” doesn’t have some sort of power dynamic over a young intern. They sold out their cause, and it has taken 20+ years to recover.

      Indeed, you can probably put Harvey Weinstein down as being enabled, if not caused by the fallout from feminism’s kao tao to Bill Clinton. Weinstein and others like him learned that they could do all the stuff that feminists accused conservatives of doing, and get away with it if they only said the right things about abortion and other feminist nonsense.

      1. Yup. The feminist reaction to Bill Clinton made it clear that they didn’t really care about women or power or anything at all except leftist politics and of course keeping abortion legal. Bill Clinton was the moral graveyard of modern feminism.

        1. They were total sellouts. That turned feminism ibyo a racket.

          At least the kapos had a much better excuse.

        2. I can’t help but wonder how much better off they would have been if they kicked Clinton to the curb and ran Gore as an incumbent in 2000.

          1. They would have been a lot better off. I think Gore wins as an incumbent. Beyond that, Trump wouldn’t be President. Had it not been for them selling out to Clinton, the pussy grabbing tape probably would have ended Trump’s campaign. And they would not have been stuck with Hillary as a nominee anyway.

            But, they couldn’t help themselves. They saved Clinton and he paid them back by selling them out to Gingrich and the Republicans.

          2. Gore might have won and, while they had no way to predict that, in hindsight they wouldn’t have been running Hillary’s baggage against Trump.

            Had Gore won, they could accept the sudden stop of ‘global warming’ and taken credit for it saving all of our lives.

            They only reason they outed themselves as hypocrites and paid the price above is hate. They hated the people offended by Bill’s actions and wanted to shove victory down their throats.

            1. Whenever I feel down, I think about how the biggest heros the Democrats had totally destroyed their party.

              Bill Clinton ripped away the sexual harassment club.
              Barak Obama ripped away their bench depth.
              Jon Stewart generated a culture of contempt that leaves them totally unable to say anything other than “I hate your fucking guts” to anyone outside their bubble.

              1. You forgot Stevens. Remember how he fought valiantly to keep those death dealing machines out of the hands of common criminals like you and me.

        3. But, in 20 years, people will again act like feminists are not, by and large, political hacks without any core beliefs whatsoever.

          They are the Jennifer Rubin of political movements.

      2. But, the feminists ignored Horn Dawg Bill’s rapes way before Monica, when he was Governor of Arkansas & enabled by the State Police! & They also ignored HildaBeast’s threats against those poor women if they went after her man!

    3. Why is anyone treating #TheEnemyOfThePeople as if their primary purpose is something other than shilling for the globalist ruling class?

      The NYTimes is All The News That Fits The Narrative.

  4. Gee, maybe no one has heard of Tara Reade because mainstream media refuses to cover her story in any real way.

    It’s almost like they have the power to drive these conversations in whatever direction they want, and they know it.

    1. They used to have that power. They increasingly don’t. And that is why they hate the alternative media so much. The fact that this ass clown is even having to explain this shows how far their power to control the narrative has been reduced. Thirty years ago, not enough people would even have known about this allegation for him to even have to explain why the Times isn’t covering it.

    2. Yeah that’s such a total bullshit copout. “Kavanaugh was famous, Reade is not!”

      Uh…..I’m pretty sure JOE BIDEN is famous, right?

      1. Biden is only running for the relatively obscure, powerless office of the chief executive of the United States, not something as important as member of SCOTUS, like Kavanaugh..

        1. Well, POTUS can’t directly alter abortion law…

    3. Heck, Quid Pro Joe raped her & he’s never of her either!

      1. Not so much “raped”, but if her claims are true, Biden is actually and literally a “pussy grabber”.

  5. It seems that not even Baquet claims that the Kavanaugh accusations were more credible.

    1. Surprising.

      More Credible is just another name for Confirmation Bias. People never give you *why* someone is more credible, it’s just some aura they can see.

  6. But no one has articulated a particularly compelling case for why Reade’s political views are relevant to her accusation about Biden.

    Putin. Do I need to draw you a picture of me drawing you a map to me spelling it out for you? P-U-T-I-N.

    I imagine the Bernie campaign wishes the Times et al had made Reade’s allegations a hot, running story.

    1. “P-U-T-I-N.”

      He just picked up his phone and said, “Is Tara Read, da? Is good to talk to you, you are great friend of Russia. Now, I want you to do me favor – please be saying Biden touched you in naughty place without asking. Is called disinformation, is doing it all the time. Trump is valuable asset, must not lose election because of superflu.”

    2. Putin is French for bitch.

    3. Bernie is the biggest pussy revolutionary the world has ever seen.

      Twice, he has groveled to the establishment and said “Thank you sir, may I have another?”

      1. We need to realize the reality.

        Bernie is a fucking terrible candidate. Always has been. He looked better in 2016 because he faced the unbelievably terrible Hillary.

        He then lost again…but far worse…to the senile Biden.

        The theory that Bernie could’ve beaten Trump in 16 is laughable.

        1. America is not nearly ready to vote for a Commie Jew!

    4. Imagine if the Bernie campaign was as easily dismissed over his (decades long) expression of “kooky pro-Russia views”.

    5. It’s telling they waited until he dropped out to mention the allegations, yes?

  7. “Reade seems almost engineered in a lab to inspire skepticism in mainstream Democrats, both because her story keeps changing”

    Didn’t stop you with Kavanaugh. In fact, Ford didn’t even have a story that involved time, location, or corroborators.

    1. The story was just so credible.

      1. That Blasey Ford bitch waited thirty years to come forward.

        Victims do not do that.

        1. If they don’t think it important or worth pressing charges about at the time.
          Or if they are actively silenced

          The Reade story is the latter. Indeed, the Times confirmed beyond any doubt that she was actively demoted shortly after the event allegedly took place.

          The Ford story claimed to be the former. A drunk guy at a party tries to push himself on you? Slap him, go home. Don’t go to any parties with that crowd again. Warn your girlfriends. Is it really worth calling the police? Criminal charges are a big deal and often quite tedious and painful for the victim. I could believe that, if the rest of her story checked out or even existed.

          1. Then there are all the clerical abuse victims who came forward 30+ years later. It happens.

            1. They were wrong to come forward after all this time.

              1. See my prior statements about being actively silenced. You could not only be fired, but blacklisted by powerful executives or politicians for speaking out. Not only in cases of sexual assault, but in whistleblower cases.

          2. The Ford story claimed to be the former. A drunk guy at a party tries to push himself on you? Slap him, go home. Don’t go to any parties with that crowd again. Warn your girlfriends. Is it really worth calling the police? Criminal charges are a big deal and often quite tedious and painful for the victim.

            Yeah, that’s why. It’s not enough you can tell the creepy guy to fuck off. In their minds you need to destroy the object of your dislike.

            Bottom line, you want to make a grand claim like rape, you should have grand evidence like in a murder. If you don’t, go home. Trying to bludgeon people with the state over sex acts you don’t like (whether or not they happened) is bullshit. It’s sex, not breach of contract or violent assault. It’s basically sports. Who gets arrested over a bad game of basketball?

    2. And her story didn’t change. She not saying that the other incident never happened. It’s perfectly possible that both allegations are true, and that she might choose to take more time before talking about the more emotionally difficult incident.

  8. The good news is that despite the Times’ and the Democratic media’s best efforts, this story has gotten out and people know about it. And if the several leftist feminist chicks I know are any sample, they are not buying this bullshit and think Biden are saying they are not voting for Biden because of it. From what I can tell there seems to be a real generation divide on this with all of Democrats over 40 I know saying “we have to vote for Biden because Trump!!” and those under 40 calling bullshit and saying they won’t vote for him because of this and other reasons.

    1. I’ve long given up requiring artists whose work I enjoy, that they share my politics. Probably reminded GaGa of her former career stripping. Talented lady.

      1. GaGa was a stripper? I didn’t know that.

        1. What did you think she was? A singer?

          1. She can sing. I am not a big fan of her music, but she can sing and has talent. She is really let down by modern recording techniques and technology. In the past, she would have had to make her records by hand instead of having a guy with a lap top fix every mistake. Her music suffers greatly for that I think.

            1. Yeah, she’s definitely talented. Even if crap pop music isn’t my thing, it takes real skill to produce it. And she’s not just some pretty girl (she’s not all that pretty, though I do find her appealing in a strange way) who sings songs other people write and produce.

            2. Her style is typical Hollywood degeneracy, but I concur that she has legit musical gifts. If she had come up in the 30s or 40s instead of the ProTools/SoundCloud era, she’d still be the standard that a lot of other singers would measure themselves against. She’s that good.

              Compare her or even Taylor Swift to someone like Beyonce, who has a mediocre, indistinguishable voice, whose songs are written by a marketing committee, and is basically a glorified stripper, but is still considered an icon.

          2. Gaga has many talents.

      2. My God. At least Hillary got Beyonce to back her.

        1. Gaga (not sure if she still capitalizes the 2nd G, or if was only a stage) can actually sing. Listen to her a capella stuff with Tony Bennett. You won’t confuse her with someone like Sarah Brightman, but Gaga was perfectly adequate in that space.

          Better than I think a lot of auto-tuned dance music singers would do.

          1. Here. Now you can confuse Sarah Brightman with Lady Gaga.

            I lost My Heart to a Starship Trooper

              1. I have no words

                1. It must have been a product of the times…. another great voice with some bizarre space content:


                  Thanks to YouTube for finding that because I clicked the Brightman link.

            1. That is simply not possible. It has to be a different Sarah Brightman. Or a parody made for late-night MTV. Something….

              Although.. I seem to recall that she bought passage to the International Space Station at some point…..

          2. She is as good as Auto Tune.

      3. She was good in American Horror story, and while she’s borderline butterface, she looks really good naked.

    2. The point is she recorded a video about sexual abuse with Joe Biden.

      1. Well, that and the fact that he spends the entire video poking his finger at the camera.

  9. “Goldberg has now weighed in on Reade’s allegation. The words ‘hero’ and ‘sacrifice’ do not appear in this column, which is titled, ‘What To Do With Tara Reade’s Allegation Against Joe Biden?'”

    I’m guessing that the words “listen and believe” don’t appear either.

    1. Do you think it bothers someone like Goldberg to be such a hypocritical piece of shit or is she so far gone she doesn’t even realize it anymore?

      1. Doesn’t bother robby.

  10. Biden fondles women in public. Sometimes they are under age.

    What’s not credible about him playing stinky pinky?

    1. You mean a guy famous for sniffing strange women’s hair in public doesn’t get the benefit of the doubt?

      1. That’s what is doing him damage here too. The left is teying to kill this story, but Biden has been publicly groping women of all ages literally hus entire life.

        It’s no stretch at all to buy that he’s an undercover groper.

        1. Worse than that, a lot of Bernie supporters are looking for an excuse not to vote for him. And him being a creepy pervert who gropes women and assaults his staff is a pretty good excuse.

          1. Excellent point.

        2. The thing is, with the nomination of Biden, it undercuts all moral authority that the left might have. Trump is a rude jerk who makes crude jokes and cheats on his wife.

          Yeah, but you nominated a man who actively preys on his underlings and demotes them for trying to file complaints.

          I just can’t think of a worse candidate for appearances on the Democratic side.

          1. This part of the narrative isn’t going to stick – bigger fish to fry and all that.

            The guy is suffering from dementia of some sort. There’s obviously no way he can serve as President. He’s way, way worse than Ronnie was in his final year. Once people start extrapolating this guy 3, 4 years into the future, he’s sunk.

            I’d say there’s at least a one in three chance that the Dems replace him at the convention. Unless there’s some other underlying cause for the symptoms he’s displaying (like a serious problem with popping pills), there’s no way people are going to trust him as the leader of the nation.

            1. It wouldn’t stick regardless. 99% of people alive are sniveling hypocrites and they know they are. They just don’t care.

  11. “we’re not reporting a story nobody has heard about because we didn’t report the story.” it’s up to you, New York.

    1. Well done. I’m now hearing the song in my head.

      “Start spreadin’ the neeeeewwwws!”

  12. Can someone clarify: what exactly are Reade’s allegations? From what i could find, they basically amount to “he touched me and i didn’t like it and i brought it up and it kept happening”. Is that right?

    I’m not defending the media trying to squash this, but “He is handsy” is a far cry from “I was rotisserie’d!”.

    Reade needs to learn from Ford and up her accusation game.

    1. She said he stuck his fingers up her vagina. Specific enough?

      1. see, that i did not read anywhere.

        1. Then you really, really have not read anything at all.

          Ford’s allegation was not an “upped” allegation… .She alleged that at a high school party, Kavanaugh and a friend were horseplaying with her in a bedroom. They closed the door and Kavanaugh wrestled with her on the bed for a few moments, making her fearful. She described both boys as laughing. She claimed that he touched her boob over her clothes, but did not attempt anything further. She fled the room, leaving the boys laughing – which she took as evidence of their evil intent.

          That is her “serious allegation”. 35 years later. She also specifies her best friend as a witness. Said best friend says she never met Kavanaugh and doesn’t believe the allegation. She also specifies other people who were there. All deny any such thing as ever having happened.

          And despite the fact that Ford was not able to narrow down the date of the alleged incident beyond a two year period (try to refute an allegation that you were alone with someone you’ve never met… when they say it happened at some point, 35 years ago, on a single day over a two year period). well, Kavanaugh did indeed refute that. He produced a calendar of his activities over the period in question and it included every party he went to. The guy is apparently anal-retentive about his organization. It was pretty iron clad proof that he was never at such a gathering. You know, the one that her best friend also says she was never at.

          That is the “upped game” allegation you are referring to.

          Meanwhile, Biden stands accused of forcibly sticking his finger in the vagina of an adult woman who worked for him while he was in the Senate…. in the workplace. She also says she made contemporaneous complaints about the incident and that it was covered up, and her managerial responsibilities were removed in retaliation. There is at least some evidence that backs up the claims that she made such reports at the time.

          Now, ask yourself this:

          Why did you believe that Ford’s allegations were more serious and more credible? It is a belief that is ludicrous on its face.

          Yet it is a belief that you held. A belief that you held strongly enough that you were willing to defend it in the comments section here.

          Here’s the real question. Why did you hold such a belief. You are not stupid. Or illiterate. Or uninterested in political matters. You know who these major players are, and you followed the stories at the time with at least passing interest.

          Yet your lasting impression is that Ford made serious allegations… and Reade did not.

          This is the issue that deserves serious thought. Because you didn’t get those opinions by accident. And it wasn’t entirely by your own choice. Those opinions were pushed upon you with intent.

          Now, the press spokesman for the DNC pressing that narrative isn’t very interesting or surprising. But you didn’t get those impressions directly from the DNC. You absorbed those impressions from the world around you… the media you consume lead you to draw those conclusions as a general impression.

          Is this simply an unhappy accident? Is it due to some incompetence in the media?

          That is where you should be turning your attention. You’ve clearly been mislead in a very stark fashion. Why? By whom?

          1. Outstanding, Cyto.

            Lays out the issues and facts with each incident, distinguishes important differences between the two, and offers an explanation for the wildly different treatment by the media.

            This is the sort of thing the professional writers at Reason should be putting under their byline.

          2. Outstanding analysis. Thank you.

    2. Her allegations are very specific. Regardless, the point here is not how credible they are standing alone. The point is they are very credible compared to Ford’s allegations. So, the Times either needs to cover them with the same vigor and give them the same benefit of the doubt they gave Ford or they need to admit they were wrong to do what they did with Ford’s allegations. That they do neither shows them to be the partisan hack pieces of shit they have always been.

      1. I don’t find Reade very credible. The only reason people should pay attention to her is to offer her as a comparison to Blasey Ford (“I was in high school but I don’t remember where or when,”) Deborah Ramirez (“I was drunk and vaguely remember something and I don’t even know who it was but I think there’s a chance it was him”) and Julie Swetnick (“I can’t corroborate any of this but he had a series of parties where women were repeatedly rape constantly and these poor women kept going back to these parties and I of course also went to several of them for no reason”).

        1. I don’t know how credible she is. But again that is not the point. The point is that the Times by the standard they set with Ford should find her credible.

    3. “He is handsy” is a far cry from “I was rotisserie’d!”.

      She’s not accusing him of being “handsy” she’s accusing him of finger blasting her in the vag. Which I suppose is a far cry from being “rotisserie’d” but so are a lot of things.

      1. Literally grabbing her by the p***y, which just talking about was thought to be evidence of criminal sexual assault a couple of years ago.

    4. “Can someone clarify: what exactly are Reade’s allegations?”
      He pinned her and penetrated her with his fingers.

    5. The second, major point of her story is that she reported the sexual assault to her supervisor, and the report was not only quashed, but she was demoted for causing a fuss, losing her supervisory responsibilities (something that the Times was able to verify).

  13. Baquet is not even making the right comparison. Yes, Kavanaugh was a running, hot story – he was up for nomination to the Supreme Court. But that should be compared to Biden, not Reade. Biden is also a running, hot story – he’s the presumptive Democratic presidential candidate. Comparing Reade to Kavanaugh but not to Ford makes no sense at all.

    1. Considering Baquet’s actual motive, it makes perfect sense.

    2. Comparing Reade to Kavanaugh but not to Ford makes no sense at all.
      But it DOES give them the desired outcome.

  14. For the record, Reade told people at the time that it happened and they’ve backed her up on that.

    1. Yep. Specific allegations are one thing. Near contemporaneous outcry witnesses that support the account are something else.

      I wasn’t convinced Blasey Ford even knew Kavanaugh at the time, or vice versa. I have a lot more faith in Reade’s story.

      1. The worst thing about Ford’s allegations were that she refused to give a time, date, or even a place for them. That made it impossible for Kavanaugh to ever prove his innocence. Kavanaugh could have come back and said “hey, I was traveling with my family in Europe that summer, so there is no way I could have done it” and she could have said “well it must have been in the fall then”.

        Even taking into account that no one’s memory of that long ago is going to be perfect, there is no way in hell a woman could be raped and not have any idea where or when exactly it happened. The fact that she claimed that she couldn’t remember that is pretty conclusive proof she was a lying sack of shit.

        1. Indeed.

          Elizabeth Smart was able to temember the time and place.

        2. Another thing. I find it very suspicious that she remembered the Who but not the Where or When. The primary reason is that no one at a drunken high school party introduces themselves by surname. He would be “Brett from North High” (or wherever) or “Brett the football player”, not “Kavanaugh”. Out of all the details to remember, she only remembers the one that she would be least likely to get in the first place.

      2. We know Reade worked for Biden. We know they were at least in the same room at the same time at one point. Ford couldn’t even prove that.

        1. ^ Yeah…good point. The best Ford could offer was that she went to a girl’s school in the area when he went to a boy’s school at the same time, and that the two groups of students often intermixed.

  15. A few visits with a crack psychotherapist and Reade should be able to recall a whole slew of other incidents and corroborative memories. Repressed memories. Hidden memories. But, even if she doesn’t, we should assume there is a treasure trove of secret recollections that implicate Biden, even if they are never stated outright, or recalled.

    1. This is an excellent comment that will not be appreciated for the insightful snark that it is.

  16. Kavanaugh was already in a public forum in a large way. Kavanaugh’s status as a Supreme Court justice was in question because of a very serious allegation. And when I say in a public way, I don’t mean in the public way of Tara Reade’s. If you ask the average person in America, they didn’t know about the Tara Reade case.

    Haven’t we been through this before… that the new media refuses to talk about something, and then when asked why, they say “Because no one is talking about it.”

    1. “He stuck his hand down my pants, and then my wallet was missing!”

      1. Responded to the wrong comment.

  17. “President Putin has an alluring combination of strength with gentleness,” she wrote in a since-deleted 2018 Medium post.

    Wait… didn’t I say something about Medium a year ago or so… that every career-ending gaffe begins with a Medium post?

    1. The fact that Reid said one nice thing about Putin totally means she is lying. Meanwhile, the fact that Ford cashed in on making the allegation and turned herself from a nobody into a leftist hero and made serious bank off it in no way diminishes her credibility.

      1. I wonder how the NYT would feel having the same standard applied to them…

        cough cough Walter Duranty cough cough

        1. Or Mao or Pol Pot or Jim Jones or any number of leftist monsters over the years.

          1. They certainly had no qualms with literal fascists.

            But once national socialism attacked international socialism, well, choices had to be made.

  18. This is what the Clintons used to call a ‘modified limited hangout’.

    Reveal just enough to give the media an excuse to say the whole thing has been settled and it’s time to move on.

    1. Yup. The Clinton playbook was to deny, do everything you could to destroy the person making the allegation, deny access to any information that might confirm the allegation, and then after you have stalled and denied as long as possible, admit that something might have happened but that it is old news that everyone knows about and doesn’t care about anymore.

  19. I wonder if she will win the ACLU courage award? Or maybe that’s going to one of Justin Fairfax’s accusers.

    1. I’m sure Dean will get a couple of those lame awards the journo class award each other.

      I always laugh at how many times Rick Reilly has won. How bad is sports writing?

  20. At least the NYT actually covered it at all.

  21. “…Kavanaugh was already in a public forum in a large way…”

    Unlike Joe Biden, of whom no one has ever heard!
    What a lying, pathetic piece of lefty shit.

    1. That statement is so illogical that I am not even sure I understand what he is saying. Is he saying Biden isn’t? Or is he so illogical that he thinks that somehow makes their Kavanaugh coverage different? I don’t think it is fair to call him a liar. I think he is just this stupid.

      1. This is the NYT who originally published this:

        We found no pattern of sexual misconduct by Biden, beyond hugs, kisses and touching that women previously said made them uncomfortable

        (emphasis mine)

        So aside from the sexual misconduct, we didn’t find any sexual misconduct.

      2. He tried to take advantage of the reporter asking about Swetnick rather than Ford. It’s at least arguable that by the time the Swetnick story came out the whole Kavanaugh thing was running hot so maybe it made sense to at least mention the existence of another allegation. But the correct comparison is to Kavanaugh’s first accuser, Ford, whose story was immediately reported too.

        1. See my screed below…. it isn’t “taking advantage of the reporter asking”….. .notice that the reporter also works for the NYT.

          There’s a reason that the obvious comparison isn’t made. This “interview” is spin. This is their version of the story…. a press release in “interview” format, designed to make it more credible than “The NYT put out a statement”.

          Let that marinate… this is their best spin on the story!

    2. Kavanaugh and Reade are the comparable people in the two stories. Because they are both powerful Republican figures trampling on the rights of the innocent Democrat victims: the crazy lady who can’t remember anything and the poor senile old man.

      1. I think Reade’s a Bernie fan.

        1. That would be hilarious.

  22. Nice try Dean. Go suck a camel’s dick and choke on the cum.

    The arrogance is stunning with these jerk offs.

    Does this piece of shit actually think people are that stupid?

    1. Rhetorical question, right?

  23. I’m re-reading Goldberg’s ‘Arrogance’.

    17 years later they haven’t learned a single fricken thing. In fact, they’re worse.

  24. The story about Biden just isn’t credible because I don’t want to believe it. Because “Credible” literally means I want to believe it. Don’t you guys know that?


    Rick McHugh previously reported on Weinstein’s many victims, so he’s not new to this rodeo.

    In the interview below, he says the following:

    * Tara Reade says she told her mother, her friend, and her brother about the sexual assault just after it happened. The mother has passed, but the friend and brother confirm they were told about this at the time.

    * He further says his interviews of the friend and brother were “not short conversations,” but long ones, where he “drilled down” to discover if their recollections matched the story Reade was telling now. He says they do in fact match.

    * He notes further that the timing of this claim tracks with Reade’s sudden demotion at the Senate.

    * Tara Reade says she also filed a complaint with the Senate about sexual harassment (not assault, which happened later) after her complaint to the Biden staff was ignored. McHugh cannot find this document, but says it seems to be located (assuming it exists) at the University of Maryland’s collection of Joe Biden’s papers — which is conveniently under seal.

    He seems to think this document used to exist, but now says it is very unlikely it will ever be found. Draw your own conclusions about that.

    I suspect it can be found right next to Obama’s college transcripts, somewhere at the bottom of the Atlantic.

    I would point out myself that Reade’s failure to press a claim at the time makes sense if she did in fact make two prior sexual harassment claims only to see both ignored and covered up.

    * He also says that the Biden campaign’s claim that she’s some kind of RUSSIAN AGENT or Putin admirer is so silly that the Biden camp isn’t pushing that claim any longer. Reade explains that she was in a creative writing class and was attempting to write a novel and that her “Russian writings” were part of that process.

  26. I’m not so sure. Is it trolling to hold feminist activists, for whom “believe all women” is an important slogan, to their convictions? Perhaps feminist organizations—recall that Planned Parenthood and NARAL both tweeted “We still believe Julie Swetnick #BelieveSurvivors” weeks after her allegation fell apart—should have anticipated being called out for this obvious double standard.

    Wait, I thought that only conservatives believed in holding people to their own standards, you know all those Alinksyites. Are you now pretending to care about consistency again?

  27. Speaking of journalist school dropouts, any coverage of Chris “Fredo” Cuomo or is that too local? I’d think it major news that one of CNN’s own top people speak out against it.

  28. Yep, that’s exactly the kind of bullshit we should expect from Pravda on the Hudson. Fuck those racist leftard pricks.


  29. It’s just a subset of the same reasoning that make this sort of thing now standard:

    I read the NYT interview, and was first struck by what looked like a Gargantuan lack of self-awareness on the part of Baquet. He seems to obliviously make the rope, fashion the noose, and hang himself.

    What’s going on here? Is it Dunning-Kruger? Is he so surrounded by like-thinkers that he can no longer recognize his biases, and his mind automatically generates and accepts absurd rationalizations? Is it actual insanity, like a husband who calmly explains that he had to murder his wife because she burned the toast? It’s remarkable.

    1. It really is remarkable. But as bs noted above, his paper’s article on the allegation included, on purpose, this line:

      “We found no pattern of sexual misconduct by Biden, beyond hugs, kisses and touching that women previously said made them uncomfortable.”

      With even the tiniest bit of diversity of thought in the newsroom that line would have axed after the first draft.

  30. Touche, Robby! Touche! While I don’t believe Tara Reid given the shifting narrative, your highlight of Kavanaugh above shows a clear ambiguity of #MeToo and its public reporting.

  31. The destruction of Reade will be a whisper campaign that “yeah slutty women always hang around men of power, you can discount her complaints” blah blah blah. And of course we will hear about “it’s just sex and nobody’s business” nonsense, except of course when the perp is a Republican and not solidly in the far left camp.

    Frankly I’m hoping for a fun John Edwards moment when Biden the shitbag dementia patient finally gets under the skin of even feminists. But I’m not counting on it. As I said before Trump should get Reade a ticket to each debate in Biden’s line of sight, assuming he can even recognize people.

    1. “ticket to each debate”

      Assuming they’ll be in front of a live audience.

      Maybe they’ll just do a Zoom debate. Assuming they figure out how to mute the entire audience so it doesn’t interrupt. That would be hilarious, I mean wrong.

  32. What kind of duplicitous switcheroo is this?
    “Kavanaugh was in a very different situation. It was a live, ongoing story”
    And the guy running for president? The one they can’t stop praising? He isn’t a “live ongoing story”?

    Then he wants us to equate the fame of the accused in one instance, with the anonymity of the accuser in the other. How stupid does he think we are?

    “Kavanaugh was already in a public forum in a large way. Kavanaugh’s status as a Supreme Court justice was in question because of a very serious allegation. And when I say in a public way, I don’t mean in the public way of Tara Reade’s. If you ask the average person in America, they didn’t know about the Tara Reade case.”

    What a fucking pice of shit!

    1. Yes. And don’t forget it either. Don’t forget the editor of the Times has this as an explanation.

      Don’t support the Times, and tell others why they shouldn’t.

  33. So Baquet sucks DNC dick, or pussy, or some hideous trans skin flap thing. But you’d think he would be better at some pretense and smoke screen. On the other hand, his staff and readers probably don’t care.

  34. the Times can’t help themselves..they really are just bolsheviks and cultural marxists…very little diversity there i..they honestly remind me of the leaders of the Bavarian Soviet Revolution..its a hatred as only people that view themselves as victimized minorities which distain for the majorities’ religion, morals, family, values,and beliefs…a psychopathic desire to strike out and destroy society so it can be remade with them at the top…to expect public virtue and honesty from these sorts is foolish. the times is made up of very sick individuals where the end justifies the means…and the end means the destruction of America and our republic for the “international”

  35. Robby, you leave out a lot of important context. And I don’t mean just picking “Kavanaugh was a running, hot story” as your pull quote over “Kavanaugh’s status as a Supreme Court justice was in question because of a very serious allegation. ” (Presidential Nominee vs Supreme Court Nominee being the differentiator here, as well as “public election” vs “senate deliberation”, both of which argue the opposite conclusion to that reached by the NYT)

    But let’s talk about the context of the NYT. The NYT isn’t simply accused of treating a single story differently because of political bias. If this one story was all there is to it, there would still be plenty of reason to criticize. But they very openly stated that they covered the Russia Collusion story with the explicit intent of bringing Trump down. Their news editors (not editorial page editors!) held a meeting in which they said as much. And their news editors promised their staff that they would find another angle for focusing the newsroom on the objective of getting Trump.

    This is important context – because spiking the Biden story isn’t an outlier, it is right in their wheelhouse.

    And the even larger context isn’t that a single news organization is couching its coverage in purely political terms – although that would in itself be worthy of notice. No, the truly important context that is not just worrying, but actually quite threatening is that there are very, very few exceptions to this approach in the media today. Everyone of the left likes to point at Fox News (Faux) as some terrible propaganda machine… but did Fox indeed cover the allegations against Kavanaugh? Did they cover Trump’s open-mike blunder?

    “Free Press” objections seem to hinge on the existence of places like Blaze Media, The Federalist and of course, Rush Limbaugh – these media outlets have an obvious political bias, therefore the real problem with bias is on the right, or so goes the objection.

    Yet the Kavanaugh allegations did not come to light in the Senate. They were leaked from Chuck Shumer’s office after being passed to him by Feinstein. And it wasn’t a single enterprising reporter who got the leak, but a strategic decision by a group of press and DNC strategists as to how to handle it. Even though a single outlet handled the leak, several were in the room as the leak was made. And all of the national outlets handled the allegations in the identical manner. There were no national outlets expressing skepticism of some extremely dubious claims and actions.

    Smash cut to Biden’s accusations… he’d been dogged by complaints of pawing on women, unwanted hugging and hair sniffing. But the press didn’t push him personally…. and the stories eventually were killed. Then he’s accused of rape – albeit not with a penis. By someone who claims to have made the complaint to his HR department at the time. (not someone who’s major claim of veracity comes from mentioning non-specific allegations to a marriage therapist decades after the fact).

    In unison the national press buried the allegation. In unison they waited to mention it at all until after they had some version that they could call “debunked”.

    The larger context is, this is how they treat serious allegations against “their guy”.

    When Clinton stood accused of draft dodging, all 3 TV networks told me what Stephanopolis told them to tell me…. “He never got a draft notice”. Then, two weeks later when the draft notice was produced, all three networks told me “This is an old story. We’ve always known that he got a draft notice. But he never got a second draft notice!” Then, when that notice was produced, all three networks said it was old news, that we had always known there was a second draft notice. On and on, through several more rounds of revelations… each time the story that was “This never happened” became “we always knew that” two weeks later.

    The larger context here is that within what we colloquially refer to as “the press”, there is one outlet that has a lean toward the republicans in Fox News. And that outlet is regularly scorned as a partisan hack.

    Yet we have ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, CNN, MSNBC, NYT, WaPo, SFC, The Tribune, even AP…. every single major news outlet isn’t just on the “leans Democrat” or even “fully left wing” side of things…. they are all blatantly partisan and clearly coordinating their coverage of most national political stories. They all use similar and often quite obviously crafted phrasing around major stories. And they all hew the party line.

    What would it take to make a dozen national newsrooms all sit on a story like this for the better part of 3 weeks? All of them, at the same time?

    It would take the same level of behind the scenes coordination that had all of the same outlets smearing high school student Sandman for standing still as a “Tribal elder” banged a drum in his face. This went on for days – only brought to heel because a couple of full videos of the encounter were published on the internet, proving the lie. Even in this environment, NBC attempted to shore up the smear by putting on the Tribal Elder in a morning interview with anchor Savannah Guthrie where he was guided through a defense of the story. The next day, the same anchor interviewed Sandman in an obvious attempt to bully the teen into publicly apologizing and accepting that he was the one in the wrong. The attempt only failed because the video was out there.

    And yet… very few outlets were critical of this. When is the major voice critical of a national story like this…. we have an issue with a functioning free press.

    That is the real context here. This isn’t about whether or not Biden deserves a fair vetting of such allegations before they are published. Of course he does. So did Kavanaugh. And every time you report it as “serious allegations” or “credible allegations” being made against Kavanaugh, you are complicit in the con they are running. There were no serious allegations against Kavanaugh – as the extensive testimony and evidence proved. Yet because of the national media narrative, that’s how that story is being preserved.

    This is national-scale propaganda. It isn’t simply political bias (which would be bad enough if it was unidirectional around the vast majority of the national press). When they all handle these stories in the same way, you have something much more serious happening.

    This is the true context of having every single national outlet make the same decision about not reporting Reade’s accusations. Not that proper journalism demands that all such allegations receive cautious vetting (they should), but what the obviously coordinated responses to these allegations reveal.

  36. There is something else that you guys missed about this story.

    This is the New York Times interviewing the New York Times. This is not some enterprising reporter from the Wall Street Journal doing a deep dive on why the NYT covered the story the way they did.

    This is the NYT providing a response to criticism about their coverage. They picked their own reporter, and it is being covered the way they want it covered.

    So when the reporter asks about Swetnick rather than Ford, it is no accident.

    And when the reporter carefully avoids questions that directly get to the heart of the matter – like the Time’s year’s long goal of “getting Trump” and how this story fits in with those plans, or asking about specific examples of extremely slanted writing as Soave has pointed out – it isn’t by accident.

    This is the Times trying to shape the narrative. This is them putting their best possible spin on the story.

    Let that sink in for a moment. Their best possible spin for why they spiked a story for most of a month in order to dig up as much on the accuser as they possibly could is that it wasn’t a “hot story” and it wasn’t as important because Kavanaugh was a supreme court nominee and Biden is merely a presidential nominee.

    This is the version that they want out there. Their best foot forward, in the friendliest possible forum, their own pages.

    1. It’s unfortunate that your excellent posts on this won’t be read by that many people. They deserve repeating, and broader dissemination.

      Thanks, Cyto, for showing me why I continue to patronize this website’s comments section.

      1. Wow, that was really kind. Thanks!

        Oh, and are you sure you are in the right place? We don’t do that around here anymore.

  37. I guess they figure that is the “least damaging” answer to the question “ What are the rules when violating due process?”.

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