Brock, a Clinton ally who has founded other groups backing her run, petitions Chairman & Publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. to commission “a review that will explore the process of reporting and editing at The New York Times that has allowed flawed, fact-free reporting on so-called scandals involving Hillary Clinton and report back to readers.”
Alleging a “seemingly institutional anti-Clinton bias” at the New York Times, Brock identifies an August 2013 story titled “Unease at Clinton Foundation Over Finances and Ambitions,” which delivered an in-depth look at the management difficulties, challenges and finances of the foundation. In Brock’s view, “it wrongly cast aspersions on foundation management.” No. 2 is the much-discussed March 2 story about Clinton’s private e-mail use, which Brock & Co. have been carpet-bombing for months. No. 3 is the arrangement between the New York Times and Peter Schweizer, author of “Clinton Cash,” a book that alleged overlaps between Clinton Foundation donors and beneficiaries of decisions from Hillary Clinton’s State Department.
The last is the fast-crumbling Times story from last night, to which the newspaper just appended a correction:
Correction: July 24, 2015
An earlier version of this article and an earlier headline, using information from senior government officials, misstated the nature of the referral to the Justice Department regarding Hillary Clinton’s personal email account while she was secretary of state. The referral addressed the potential compromise of classified information in connection with that personal email account. It did not specifically request an investigation into Mrs. Clinton.
In light of those stories, writes Brock, the New York Times needs to step back and look inward. “Perhaps lessons can be learned from the internal review commissioned by CBS News following a flawed 60 Minutes report regarding the attacks on U.S. diplomatic facilities in Benghazi,” he writes. “Following that internal review, then-Chairman of CBS News and Executive Producer of 60 Minutes Jeff Fager admitted that ‘there is a lot to learn from this mistake for the entire organization.'”
That example is instructive: The “60 Minutes” story to which Brock is referring featured bogus testimony from an alleged Benghazi eyewitness who, actually, wasn’t even near the scene of the hostilities on that September 2012 night; CBS News had essentially aired a giant fabrication. The alleged eyewitness account stemmed from a book published by a company under the CBS corporate banner — stacking a conflict-of-interest problem on top of a truthfulness problem. In other words, the “60 Minutes” scandal bears no likeness whatsoever to the New York Times’ coverage of Hillary Clinton: tough stories with occasional flaws. Sure, the paper should have a look at its sourcing for the story it “broke” last night. But its investigative resources should remain focused on Clinton and other presidential candidates.
New York Times spokesperson issued this statement to the Erik Wemple Blog: “David Brock is a partisan. It is not surprising that he is unhappy with some of our aggressive coverage of important political figures. We are proud of that coverage and obviously disagree with his opinion.”