“emails between New York Times editors reveal they ignored fact checkers and admitted to ‘sneaking a link’ between Sarah Palin and the shooting of Rep. Gabby Giffords”
Sarah Palin is suing the New York Times for defamation and she has a good case. The whole thing stems from the paper trying to link her to the 2011 shooting of Gabby Giffords, following the 2017 shooting of Rep. Steve Scalise and other Republicans.
After the shooting of Giffords, the liberal media tried to link the shooting to a map that had been released by Palin’s PAC which featured crosshair symbols. You may remember the image:
After the shooting of Scalise in 2017, the NY Times published a piece which drew a link between this map and the shooting, a bogus claim, especially considering that the shooter was a fan of Bernie Sanders and Rachel Maddow.
Tom Hays reports at the Associated Press:
Palin resumes court battle with Times after COVID illness
Sarah Palin’s libel suit against The New York Times went to trial Thursday in a case over the former Alaska governor’s claims the newspaper damaged her reputation with an editorial linking her campaign rhetoric to a mass shooting…
Axelrod, an attorney for the Times, acknowledged the newspaper made a factual mistake in the editorial, but said it was not malicious and the paper “acted as quickly as possible to correct that mistake.”
Palin sued the Times in 2017, accusing it of damaging her career as a political commentator with an editorial about gun control published after U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise, a Louisiana Republican, was wounded when a man with a history of anti-GOP activity opened fire on a Congressional baseball team practice in Washington.
In the editorial, the Times wrote that before the 2011 mass shooting in Arizona that severely wounded former U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords and killed six others, Palin’s political action committee had contributed to an atmosphere of violence by circulating a map of electoral districts that put Giffords and 19 other Democrats under stylized crosshairs.
In a correction two days later, The Times said the editorial had “incorrectly stated that a link existed between political rhetoric and the 2011 shooting” and that it had “incorrectly described” the map.
According to Daniel Bates of the Daily Mail, jurors saw emails from the New York Times which made it seem like they knew that they screwed up:
Damning emails between New York Times editors reveal they ignored fact checkers and admitted to ‘sneaking a link’ between Sarah Palin and the shooting of Rep. Gabby Giffords when they published editorial, former Alaska governor’s defamation trial hears
Damning internal emails sent by members of the New York Times editorial board were made public today during the libel trial brought by Sarah Palin against the newspaper.
The emails were introduced by Palin’s lawyer Shane Vogt as he questioned Elizabeth Williamson, a journalist with the editorial section of the Times who wrote the first draft of the article.
In a message shown to the jury, Jesse Wegman, a member of the NYT editorial board, wrote that he worried the opinion piece that Palin sued over looked like they were trying to ‘sneak in’ a link between her and the 2011 shooting of former Rep. Gabby Giffords…
The emails also show that the editors appear to have ignored the advice of a fact checker who pointed out that the map came out ‘months’ before the shooting – but the article only said ‘before’…
The piece stated that in 2011: ‘The link to political incitement was clear. Before the shooting, Sarah Palin’s political action committee circulated a map of targeted electoral districts that put Ms. Giffords and 19 other Democrats under stylized crosshairs’.
At 10.48pm that night, after the article was published, Wegman emailed Williamson: ‘The gun rights brigade is having a seizure over the Giffords – Loughner – Palin link.
Seth Stevenson of Slate has the exact passage from the Times:
If you’re just tuning in, a quick primer on how we got here might be useful: On June 14, 2017, a left-wing activist fired a hail of bullets at Republican politicians who were playing softball on a field in Virginia (wounding, among others, Louisiana Rep. Steve Scalise). Later that same day, the Times posted an editorial about the incident on its website. The essay condemned—as the headline put it—“America’s Lethal Politics.” The piece ran in the print edition the following morning, and contained these passages:
Was this attack evidence of how vicious American politics has become? Probably. In 2011, when Jared Lee Loughner opened fire in a supermarket parking lot, grievously wounding Representative Gabby Giffords and killing six people, including a 9-year-old-girl, the link to political incitement was clear. Before the shooting, Sarah Palin’s political action committee circulated a map of targeted electoral districts that put Ms. Giffords and 19 other Democrats under stylized cross hairs.
The problem for the New York Times is that they are relying on a benefit of the doubt they do not deserve.
They’re lucky I’m not on that jury. In my mind, this is a pretty clear-cut case.
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