Monday, January 24, 2022

Scandal at SCOTUS

 Last week I put up a story by Nina Totenberg about Chief Justice Roberts "asking" the other Justices to wear masks because of Justice Sotomayor's health.  Gorsuch supposedly refused and Sotomayor didn't take the bench.  That led to Gorsuch and Sotomayor issuing a joint statement saying it wasn't true, followed by a statement by the Chief saying it wasn't true.  Woah.  But Nina Totenberg is sticking by her reporting, even if NPR has backed off a little bit.  From the Washington Post:

Totenberg and NPR offered a rejoinder on Wednesday. “NPR stands by its reporting,” Totenberg wrote in a news story reporting on the reaction to her original news story.

And there it stood — until NPR’s public editor, Kelly McBride, weighed in with an assessment late Thursday. McBride, who functions as NPR’s ombudsman and has no authority over its newsroom, recommended that the organization issue a “clarification” to Totenberg’s story — not quite as serious as a correction but still nothing any reporter wants under her byline.

McBride suggested that despite the definitive language in her article, Totenberg wasn’t sure how Roberts conveyed his concerns to his fellow justices — whether he “asked” them to wear masks or made his thoughts known in a subtler way. She quoted Totenberg as saying, “If I knew exactly how he communicated this I would say it. Instead I said ‘in some form.’ ”

McBride concluded that using the word “asked” was “inaccurate” and “misleading,” and wrote that NPR should clarify the article accordingly.

Totenberg seemed to reject the advice, telling the Daily Beast on Thursday night that McBride “can write any goddamn thing she wants, whether or not I think it’s true. She’s not clarifying anything!”

And indeed, as of Friday afternoon, there is still no clarification or correction on Totenberg’s original article. But both NPR and Totenberg have seemed tacitly to acknowledge the problem elsewhere. In a follow-up report Tuesday afternoon on “All Things Considered,” Totenberg avoided the word “asked” and said Roberts had merely “suggested” masks be worn in the courtroom. Neither she nor NPR indicated that her characterization had changed from her report that morning.


Anonymous said...

Tattoodtiger1 said...

There are plenty of non believers on the bench, that are selfish and don't care who they infect...God help the vulnerable.

Anonymous said...

The King's deer need a lot of protection as they have been through a terrible pandemic of Covideer-19. But the Chief Justice can stop protecting them for a minute and show a copy of the e-mail, so we will know. Protecting the reputation of the supremely selfish is how the media let Trump skate on lies for years. If true, Gorsuch has a right to his lifetime appointment as a hated jerk. If it happened, he does not have the right to pretend it never happened, since this is not a Republican committee nomination hearing.