In a shocking display of disregard for journalistic integrity by the former “paper of record,” the New York Times has decided not to fire a reporter who slept with her government.
“After careful examination and discussion, I have decided to reassign her to a position in New York for a fresh start, where she will be closely supervised and have a senior mentor,” says an internal memo. “We also intend to tighten our job candidate screening process to ensure that significant questions make their way to the newsroom leadership for full discussion — which did not happen in this case.”
The Times will not fire Watkins, but assured its readers that they are committed to journalistic integrity.
“We hold our journalists and their work to the highest standards,” says the memo. “We are giving Ali an opportunity to show that she can live up to them. I believe she can. I also believe that The Times must be a humane place that can allow for second chances when there are mitigating circumstances.”
Executive Editor Dan Baquet wrote the memo.
The Times also criticized the government’s handling of the situation.
“As an institution, we abhor the actions of the government in this case,” the memo said. “Without notice, investigators rummaged through years of a journalist’s phone and email records, an intrusion that puts First Amendment protections at risk and violated Justice Department guidelines that have bipartisan support.”
Watkins’ source stands accused of lying about leaking classified intelligence.
A New York Times reporter had her phone and email records seized after her lover, a staff member for the Senate Intelligence Committee (SSCI) was arrested for lying to the FBI during an investigation into the leak of classified information.
Reporter Ali Watkins had a three-year relationship with James A. Wolfe, longtime director of security for the SSCI. He is alleged to have made false statements to the FBI regarding his relationship with three reporters in connection to the Carter Page case.
“It appeared that the F.B.I. was investigating how Ms. Watkins learned that Russian spies in 2013 had tried to recruit Carter Page, a former Trump foreign policy adviser,” according to the New York Times.
BLP Passage Ends.
The scandal does not help the image of the struggling paper. A recent Harvard Harris Poll shows that 65 percent of Americans believe that the mainstream media reports “a lot of fake news.”
While Watkins may be getting a fresh start, the Times’ credibility is not.
‘WHAT A DISASTER:’ Iowa Caucus Results Delayed in Vote Count Catastrophe
The nation is left with more questions than answers on the night of the Iowa Caucus.
The Iowa Caucus was intended to kick off the Democratic Presidential primary by highlighting candidates with a credible shot of winning the nomination.
Instead, the first-in-the nation caucus seems to be more representative of the Democratic Party’s incompetence, after results for the caucus are delayed for an unforeseen “quality assurance” tabulation process. The development has many election hawks and Democrats howling mad, with many suspecting the DNC is dipping into its bag of old tricks with the hopes of blunting or preventing a Bernie Sanders victory in the caucus.
There are many reports of caucus precinct coordinators being totally ignored when trying to report the results of their local caucuses to the Iowa Democratic Party. At least one caucus organizer was outright hung up on by the party when he called in to report results- while speaking to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer live on air.
This is the moment
— Ryan James Girdusky (@RyanGirdusky) February 4, 2020
The mass of confusion is being traced to the failure of an app designed to report results. Iowa Democrats simply explained the unusual delay as the result of “inconsistencies,” offering little to no in depth explanation for what seems to be third world election practices.
Although we’re inexplicably left without any vote tallies the night of the election, exit polls and crowd sizes suggest that polling frontrunner Sanders has a strong chance to win. Pete Buttigieg also appears set for a strong second place performance. Sanders expressed confidence in a strong performance when addressing his supporters in the state.
— Averi Harper (@AveriHarper) February 4, 2020
Former Vice President Joe Biden appears slated for an embarrassment, outright failing to advance to the “viable” stage in many precinct and regional caucus. It’s not entirely impossible that Biden finishes fourth in the primary, a surprise development that would leave the candidate many assumed to be an easy frontrunner for the Democratic nomination struggling as he lags to New Hampshire and later primary states.
MSNBC talking heads could be overheard referring to the caucus as a “disaster” in a some capacity in leaked audio.
NBC hot mic captures "OMG, what a disaster" as they talk about canditates pic.twitter.com/IWfZsIOHPc
— Wojciech Pawelczyk (@PolishPatriotTM) February 4, 2020
As of late Monday night, the Iowa Democratic Party is yet to report any vote results, let alone declare a winner. Big League Politics is continuing to monitor the situation.
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