If MSNBC’s Chris Hayes is guilty of having the worst commentary response to the Brett Kavanaugh sexual assault allegations, NBC News’ Ken Dilanian, Brandy Zadrozny, and Ben Popken are guilty of having the worst news coverage.
The three reporters authored a trash article this week, titled “Accuser's schoolmate says she recalls hearing of alleged Kavanaugh incident,” and I am not exaggerating when I say it is trash.
The article relies entirely on a since-deleted Facebook post of a woman who claims she went to the same school as the Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who claims Kavanaugh tried to rape her when they were both in high school.
The NBC article opens with these lines: “A former schoolmate of Brett Kavanaugh's accuser wrote a Facebook post saying she recalls hearing about the alleged assault incident involving the future Supreme Court nominee, though she says she has no first-hand information to corroborate the accuser's claims.”
In better times, the second part of that sentence would’ve been reason enough to hold off the report until more could be confirmed. But these are not better times. There's a Supreme Court nominee to sink!
The Facebook user, Cristina King Miranda, wrote originally on social media, "Christine Blasey Ford was a year or so behind me. I did not know her personally but I remember her. This incident did happen."
Her post added, "Many of us heard a buzz about it indirectly with few specific details. However Christine's vivid recollection should be more than enough for us to truly, deeply know that the accusation is true."
She later deleted her claim, which is noted in the NBC story.
The NBC original report also includes the reporters’ mindboggling admission that [emphasis added], “NBC News confirmed that the statements were hers, but did not confirm her allegation.”
The report also contained this line: “The assertion that other people heard about and discussed an incident between Blasey Ford and Kavanaugh at the time it is alleged to have happened could loom as an important factor in any investigation of the claim.”
Yes, that could be an “important factor” considering Miranda’s version of events seemingly contradicts when Ford herself said in an interview with the Washington Post that she “told no one of the incident in any detail until 2012, when she was in couples therapy with her husband.”
Amazingly, the NBC News wonder team made no effort to reconcile the “many of us heard a buzz about it indirectly with few specific details” line with Ford’s own claim she didn’t tell a soul about the ordeal. Good work all around, fellas.
After Miranda deleted her Facebook post, she tweeted explanations, which she also deleted.
“Hi all, deleted this because it served its purpose and I am now dealing with a slew of requests for interviews from The Wash Post, CNN, CBS News. Organizing how I want to proceed. Was not ready for that, not sure I am interested in pursuing. Thanks for reading,” she explained later in a since-deleted tweet.
She added, “I will not be doing anymore interviews. No more circus. To clarify my post: I do not have first hand knowledge of the incident that Dr. Christine Blasey Ford mentions, and I stand by my support for Christine. That's it. I don't have more to say on the subject.”
Later, Miranda told NPR, "In my post, I was empowered and I was sure it probably did [happen]. I had no idea that I would now have to go to the specifics and defend it before 50 cable channels."
Let’s see if we can get the tick-tock of this report correct: By the time NBC News published its report Wednesday, the schoolmate had already deleted her Facebook post. She had also already admitted to having no first-hand knowledge of the alleged assault. The woman then tweeted she’d do no interviews, and she deleted her tweets. She later said in an interview with NPR, "That [the assault] happened or not, I have no idea. I can't say that it did or didn't."
So, other than all these massive, glaring red flags, this is some solid work all around from NBC. Just tremendous news coverage.