The next time Howard Dean goes after The New York Times for “sloppy journalism,” perhaps he should make sure one of the paper’s reporters isn’t on the air with him.
Following The Times’ Thursday report about the Clinton Foundation and Bill Clinton profiting off a uranium deal that was not disclosed to the Hillary Clinton-run State Department, Dean took on the newspaper over its journalistic practices.
After Dean and “Morning Joe” host Joe Scarborough tangled over the credentials of “Clinton Cash” author Peter Schweizer, Dean aimed his fire at the Gray Lady, hitting its reporters for “substituting their judgment for real facts.”
“This is the problem here. I’m not going to accuse The New York Times of having bias. They do, everybody has bias. But there is — the author is getting money from donors, big donors, billionaires in Texas who support Ted Cruz,” Dean said. “That is a problem.”
“You’re going back to the author?” Scarborough asked incredulously.
“But that’s a fact,” Dean said.
“That has nothing to do with The New York Times –The New York Times, Newsweek, other publications are following these leads,” Scarborough explained. “You can try to trace it back to an author, but you’re actually going to have to condemn The New York Times’ Jo Becker and Mike McIntyre because they’re the ones that wrote this story.”
“First of all, I haven’t seen the story and neither have you,” Dean replied. “I will say that there is an epidemic of really sloppy reporting that goes from the top to the bottom about people who put stuff in before they’re ready to get all the facts. And I’d like to see what all the facts are here because so far we haven’t really seen them.”
“Why don’t you read the story before you accuse The New York Times of being sloppy,” Scarborough told Dean.
“Because, in general, The New York Times has been sloppy, particularly their political writers,” Dean said. “I use The New York Times as an example in journalism school classes because by the fifth paragraph in any political story…they’re substituting their judgment for real facts.”
“I consider you a good friend of mine,” Scarborough started. “I think it is unbecoming for you to come on this show and to just reflexively attack everybody that tries to bring up any information that goes against what you want people to hear about Hillary Clinton.”
With his comments, Dean drew the ire of Jeremy Peters, a political reporter from The New York Times, who was on the panel and ripped the former Vermont governor for his “unfair” accusations.
“Well, Howard, would you say that I’m a sloppy political New York Times journalist?” he asked. “I think that is an overly broad generalization that maligns my colleagues and I think it’s quite unfair of you. I’ve dealt with you an awful lot, and I don’t think you would call me sloppy.”
“I would not, but there are plenty of people who write for The New York Times that I think are incredibly sloppy and I could name a lot of them,” Dean responded. “Including some correspondents, well-known correspondents, on various network, one of which covered this had story who basically put up stuff.
“Let me just ask you. Do you have any bad dealings with Jo Becker or Mike McIntyre?” Scarborough asked.
“I do not,” he said.
Changing the subject from there to the story at hand, co-host Mika Brzezinski asked Dean about the actual contents of the story.
“Do you think that Bill Clinton should take $500,000 for a speech in Moscow while all these other dealings are going on and Hillary Clinton is?” Brzezinski asked
“I don’t know the circumstances of that,” Dean said.
“Yes or no, is that a legitimate question?” Brzezinski pressed.
“I have no idea. You have to know the circumstances are,” Dean deflected.
“Oh, come on!” an exasperated Brzezinski yelped.