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NYT Accused of 'Journalistic Malpractice' in Kavanaugh Story

Key detail was left out, critics say
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 16, 2019 4:26 AM CDT
Updated Sep 16, 2019 5:11 AM CDT
In this Oct. 8, 2018 photo, Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh stands before a ceremonial swearing-in in the East Room of the White House.   (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)
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(Newser) – Brett Kavanaugh's allies—including the man who nominated him to the Supreme Court—are pushing back against the latest sexual misconduct allegations against him. John McCormack at the National Review calls a New York Times story adapted from an upcoming book by Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly a "dud." He notes that the article contains an allegation from Max Stier, one of Kavanaugh's Yale classmates, that friends pushed Kavanaugh's penis "into the hand of a female student"—but according to conservative author Mollie Hemingway, who saw an advance copy of The Education of Brett Kavanaugh, the book states that the woman Stier "named as having been supposedly victimized by Kavanaugh and friends denies any memory of the alleged event."

McCormack calls the omission of that fact from the story—which was later corrected by the Times—"one of the worst cases of journalistic malpractice in recent memory." He also criticizes the reporting of accusations from another Yale classmate, Deborah Ramirez—who says Kavanaugh "thrust his penis" at her at a party—saying the Times story was "larded" with details about her background to make it seem like Kavanaugh "was the type of privileged jerk who might expose himself in front of an under-privileged college classmate." Roger Kimball at the Spectator slams the Times for reviving "grotesque calumny" against Kavanaugh. In a tweet, President Trump suggested that the Justice Department should "rescue" Kavanaugh from the "false allegations." (Democrats, meanwhile, are talking about impeachment.)

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