A line in the sand has been drawn regarding the Twitter scandalette involving CNN White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins.
Full disclosure: She’s a former coworker.
Fox News’s senior political analyst Brit Hume, 75, seemed to take on a fatherly role in defending the 26-year-old journalist who tweeted a couple of mildly offensive things seven years ago.
Collins quickly apologized for her actions.
When I was in college, I used ignorant language in a few tweets to my friends. It was immature but it doesn’t represent the way I feel at all. I regret it and apologize.
— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) October 7, 2018
After the apology, Hume encouraged the lynch mob to move on.
“I don’t know Kaitlan Collins, but I know how I behaved in college when I said all kinds of stuff I wouldn’t say now,” he wrote. “I don’t see any evidence she harbors such sentiments now. Time to let this go.”
David Wohl, a Trump surrogate, wasn’t keen on letting anything go.
“Sorry Brit, if a male FNC reporter were exposed going on a homophobic rant -now or 10 years ago – they would’ve been fired 5 minutes later and CNN would make it their lead story,” he replied. “Time to end the double standard.”
Hume shot him down again.
“David, you either believe college and high-school indiscretions should be used against a person or you don’t,” he wrote. “I don’t, whether it’s Brett Kavanaugh or Kaitlan Collins.”
Erick Erickson, an outspoken conservative who has not always supported President Trump, sided with Collins and encouraged forgiveness. As is typical for him, he brought his faith into his views.
“I think @kaitlancollins is a great reporter and the attacks on her are ridiculous,” Erickson, who edits The Resurgent, wrote. “Show some grace, people.”
The mob against Collins has largely included far right Twactivists and ardent Trump supporters like Arthur Schwartz, a friend of former White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci, and One America News host Jack Posobiec.
Schwartz has tried to crowdsource more ancient tweets, promising to take the information to Breitbart News. So far, Breitbart News has covered the story in a straightforward manner, with no embellishments or pointed opinions.
But Posobiec is another story.
“Y’all know you Lefties would be grabbing pitchforks and torches if @TomiLahren had said something like Kaitlan Collins don’t play [sic],” Posobiec wrote.
Jonathan Swan, a White House reporter for Axios, sympathized with Collins. “God help me if people start digging up the dumb crap I probably said in high school and college,” he wrote. “Might as well resign now!”
Some of Collins’ former coworkers strongly defended her work. Most requested anonymity.
“These haters can fuck off, and she should have come out and just said that. Her critics are nothing but talentless losers.”
“It’s fucking bullshit.”
“Kaitlan Collins rose up on sheer talent and drive at The Daily Caller,” said Eric Owens, a former coworker to Collins. “To use what she did as a college student when she is one of the most neutral reporters on the national scene is dumb. What is the point other than the destruction of a promising career?”
“Clearly Schwartz and company aren’t actually offended,” said another former coworker. “This is pathetic. I thought we all learned two wrongs don’t make a right.”
“The offending tweets involved the word “fag,” but it was unclear what she even meant by it. She also wrote, “idk if I wanna room with a lesbian.”
Although one colleague spoke anonymously against her, Collins’ coworkers — past and present — have had her back.
“Come on, folks,” wrote Jeff Zeleny, a CNN White House correspondent. “@kaitlancollins is a great reporter, but far more than that, a good person. I stand by her as a friend and a colleague. Enough.”
Likewise, Matt Dornic, CNN Worldwide’s veep of communications and digital partnerships, offered this response: I’m a proud gay man. And I am a proud friend of @kaitlancollins. “Tho I’m disappointed that she ever used the word (even as an immature college kid), I can say with certainty it doesn’t reflect her feelings toward the LGBTQ community. She’s apologized and I accept that.”
Collins has appeared as usual on CNN since the Log Cabin Republicans unleashed her old tweets and the story was subsequently first reported by The Washington Examiner.