These questionable tactics continue to surface as people dig deeper into the apparently falsified claims against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
Year-old texts contained in a Senate Judiciary Committee report show that New York Times reporter Robin Pogrebin engaged in questionable journalistic tactics to shape a false narrative against Kavanaugh by telling a source what to say and by asking sources to confirm information she herself had given them. And despite including a highly opinionated discussion of the text exchange in their book, the authors never admitted that Pogrebin was a key player in the exchanges.
Pogrebin made a bizarre and unsupported claim this week that Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh had told her to lie. It turned out Pogrebin had mischaracterized discussions with the Supreme Court’s public information officer, not Kavanaugh, who had merely explained the terms of an off-the-record interview that was being sought and never obtained. Despite the many errors and false claims Pogrebin and her co-author Kate Kelly made, corporate media picked up on this false statement as if it were true.
Pogrebin and Kelly quote many snippets of the texts without revealing what the women said about Pogrebin herself. Pogrebin briefly discloses that she went to Yale University with Kavanaugh and Ramirez. She used those connections to call up old classmates and sell a book, although she and her co-author now are trying to present themselves as objective reporters.
What Yarasavage, in particular, said was quite relevant. Yarasavage noted that Pogrebin had called her up as an old Yale friend, failing to note that the culture reporter at the New York Times was actually trying to write a hit piece on Kavanaugh.