Thursday, February 21, 2008

Behind the Scenes of the McCain/Lobbyist Story

The New York Times article on Sen John McCain (R-AZ) and the telecom lobbyist doesn't sound nearly so interesting as the behind-the-scenes hand wringing that went on in the NYT newsroom as journalists argued over whether it was "fit to print." From The New Republic:

"The publication of the article capped three months of intense internal deliberations at the Times over whether to publish the negative piece and its most explosive charge about the affair. It pitted the reporters investigating the story, who believed they had nailed it, against executive editor Bill Keller, who believed they hadn't. It likely cost the paper one investigative reporter, who decided to leave in frustration. And the Times ended up publishing a piece in which the institutional tensions about just what the story should be are palpable."

Reporters learned early into their three month investigation found out that Sen McCain had retained Bob Bennett -- the lawyer who represented Bill Clinton in the Monica Lewinsky scandal -- to defend against questions from the NYT. (TNR)

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