Erik Wemple | Opinion
January 3, 2018 at 11:10 AM
News properties owned by Rupert Murdoch have done admirable work in chiseling away at cornerstones of U.S. democracy in service to President Trump. Opinionators at Fox News, for example, have advanced the administration’s plans to deconstruct the administrative state by dissing government in general and the FBI in particular.
Now Murdoch’s New York Post is going a step further, to the extent that’s possible. Here’s the headline on Richard Johnson’s Tuesday story on Page Six: “Russia probe grand jury looks like ‘a Black Lives Matter rally,’ says witness.” Based on the input of a single witness who testified before the Russia grand jury that’s hearing testimony in special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s investigation, Johnson writes:
Of the 20 jurors, 11 are African-Americans and two were wearing “peace T-shirts,” the witness said. “There was only one white male in the room, and he was a prosecutor.” Mueller was not present.
My source said, “That room isn’t a room where POTUS gets a fair shake.”
From the sound of things, a Trump loyalist came face to face with a group of black people seated together and didn’t like it. So the loyalist leaked to the New York Post, which was happy to get a New Year’s jump on fresh approaches to discrediting the investigation into possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia. While at the same time weakening confidence in the U.S. criminal-justice system, of course.
When questioned about the piece via phone, Johnson responded, “I respectfully have no comment at this time. I don’t give interviews unless I get permission.”