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Posts Tagged ‘Erik Wemple’

Ed Schultz Fires Back at Politico

MSNBC host Ed Schultz, who is moving from prime time to weekends, took a parting shot at Politico in his final 8 p.m. slot Thursday night. He used Politico‘s words to springboard a sentiment that other media writers such as WaPo‘s Erik Wemple have also expressed, which is that Schultz moving to weekends isn’t a step up.

Politico‘s Dylan Byers shoved a cryptic punch into the last few lines of a post on Schultz: “Sources at MSNBC told POLITICO that that was a very generous interpretation of events. Schultz was pushed out to make way for new talent, they said.” Byers wrote that Schultz would no longer host the weekday program as of April. As stated above, his final weekday show was last night.

“I understand that Politico wrote something about the fact that I’m going to a relatively no mans land for cable news programming,” Schultz said snidely at the close of his show. “Really? Well I guess I wouldn’t want it any other way, because we’re going to build those hours to the best hours in cable. This is what The Ed Show has always been about. This is what The Ed Show is always going to be about. The people on the road, the stories, the butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker, those middle class Americans who are fighting for a fair share, their piece of the pie of this great country. That’s what I want to do, that’s what I’m going to do and I’m looking forward to it.”

Schultz’s farewell, which included an emotional tribute to his wife, Wendy, went so long that he was cut off before he could finish. No doubt he’ll have more to say in his brand new 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. weekend slot.

5 Questions for The Daily Caller

The plot thickens with the case of Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and his alleged penchant for Dominican prostitutes. While this story, originally reported by The Daily Caller‘s Matthew Boyle, who is now with Breitbart, has been stewing for a few months, things really heated up on Monday evening. WaPo reported that the prostitute in question told authorities in the Dominican Republic that she was paid to make up the story and she has never met Menendez. Ruh roh. WaPo reports, “The woman said a local lawyer had approached her and a fellow escort and asked them to help frame Menendez and a top donor, Salomon Melgen, according to affidavits obtained by The Washington Post.”

So, it looks like the Menendez story is bullshit. Or is it? The Daily Caller wasted no time in rebutting the story by WaPo saying that, essentially, they got the wrong hooker. The argument, by outgoing Daily Caller Executive Editor David Martosko, says that the women that THEY interviewed were 24 at the time, while WaPo claims the escort was 23. Martosko also says neither of the prostitutes they interviewed went by the name “Nexis de los Santos Santana,” as WaPo identifies her.

So, what the hell is going on? We have a few questions. Read more

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

Burying the lead

“Magistrate in Pistorius case really knows how to bury the lead. He’s been reading back the case for more than 1/2 hr now w/o ruling on bail.” — Jon Belmont, AP Radio News.

Travel Bitches

“Nothing like starting off the day with a 4 am wake up for a 6 am flight.” — WaPo‘s Karen Tumulty.

“Instead of “quiet car” Amtrak should have one where everyone who screams on their phones all the way from DC to NY sits together.” — MSNBC “Daily Rundown” Executive Producer Brooke Brower.

“Longest Circulator ride of. My. Life.” — MetroWeekly‘s Justin Snow.

“Seatmate warns: ‘I didn’t sleep last night, so I may doze on your shoulder.’ #StrangerDanger” — Erica Elliot, the avid travel tweeter who is also the Communications Director for the Major Whip of the House, Kevin McCarthy.

Ouch and more ouch!

“@ErikWemple Looking forward to your next piece when you ask the Obama campaign which Politico and WaPo stories helped them the most.” — The Daily Caller‘s Alex Pappas to WaPo‘s Erik Wemple for this story, in which he takes Breitbart.com and The Daily Caller and lumps them together into a story on shoddy conservative media reporting. Shockingly (and yes, we’re being sarcastic), no one from either publication would speak to the Erik Wemple Blog for his story. Before he began writing for WaPo, Wemple indicated that he would not be covering WaPo. He has broken this declaration a few times, but has mostly stuck with it.

Politico Playbook Publish Time: 9:39 a.m.

New D.C. slang: “the metch” 

“Today in IMing: a friend refers to Metro as ‘the metch’ which is not shorter than ‘metro’ but is more fun to say I guess.” — TPM‘s Evan McMorris-Santoro.

Moving woes

“It was a huge mistake to think that I could install my internet by myself.” — BuzzFeed‘s Rosie Gray, who recently moved to Washington from New York.

Bon Voyage!

“Thank you so much everyone for your kind notes. Psyched to head to Beijing but sad to be leaving such amazing friends & colleagues in DC.” — WaPo‘s Felicia Sonmez. We inquired what Sonmez was up to in Bejing. She replied, “Today is my last day at the Post. I am planning to move to Beijing in the next few months and study Chinese, and then find a reporting job there.” All the best to Sonmez on her new adventure.

Self-Appointed Media Critics

  • “Local news doing a fabulous job with storm coverage. Too bad they suck at covering most everything else.” — Conservative radio host and gun enthusiast Dana Loesch.
  • “Every year National Journal’s ratings of conservatives and liberals come out I’m reminded of just how stupid National Journal can be.” — FNC and RedState‘s Erick Erickson.

Senate gets new rail to protect clock from reporters chasing senators (a joke, sort of, of course)…

Read more

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

“I hate that bitch.”Lesley Murphy, the Washington, D.C. political consultant who was sent home last night on ABC’s “The Bachelor” after ultimately deciding not to tell the Bachelor that she was falling in love with him. She was talking about the villainous Tierra LiCausi, an emotional woman who was sent home last night because she couldn’t stop crying and fighting with the other women in competition for Sean Lowe‘s love.

“Living large at 42, Joe.”Politico Executive Editor Jim VandeHei on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” this morning. His birthday is today. Amazing, he got a rather low-key mention in Politico Playbook, curiously coming in just after Robert Griffin III and USA Today Washington Bureau Chief Susan Page. What the hell, third?

SOTU guest suggestions

“Waiting for a Dem to invite a homeless penguin b/c of climate change and Republican to invite a destitute coal exec b/c of EPA to SOTU.” — BuzzFeed Washington Bureau Chief John Stanton.

Politico Playbook publish time: 7:40 a.m.

NPR freelancer sick of unruly toddlers

“Oh lady who sets her toddlers free in the lobby every day, we may have words.” — NPR freelancer Lizzie O’Leary, who recently opened up to Cosmo mag about her painful bout with endometriosis and why she left CNN — obviously she can’t go on the air on Vicodin. In the story, she mentioned her intellectual prowess. The quote: “I got the amazing chance to be a CNN correspondent, but my body just wasn’t capable of doing that. But it’s also been this very strange gift. For so long, I defined myself as a journalist, and in the time when I’ve been sick, I’ve learned to define myself as a daughter and a sister and a girlfriend and an intellectual.”

Catholic newsflash for the media

“Dear Media — just because a group has ‘Catholic’ in its name does not mean it speaks for Catholics. i.e. Catholics United.” — John Kartch, spokesman to Americans for Tax Reform Prez Grover Norquist.

The Observer

“I believe Maria Cantwell got a new haircut (or at least is styling a little differently) and I like the side bang.” — Roll Call‘s Meredith Shiner on the Democratic senator from Washington state.

Media writer fully expects CBS to blow him off

“The Erik Wemple Blog has reached out to CBS News for perspective on all of this. We expect absolutely no response.” — The conclusion of WaPo Erik Wemple‘s story on CBS Major Garrett‘s unexpected explosion of “shirty” profanity Monday. Garrett, CBS’s Chief White House Correspondent, hasn’t yet responded to the torrent of eager reporters. But he did say this: “Monday before SOTU is always slow. Pity. I was speaking to @JOSreports. He knows why. I hear S#%* is REALLY hitting the fan in Damascus.”

Important Q to Ponder from the R media: “Is surgical removal of @Toure‘s lips from @BarackObama‘s posterior covered by ObamaCare? #justcurious.” — Newsbuster‘s Ken Shepherd. Touré c0-hosts MSNBC’s “The Cycle.”

Which Washington reporter just went on book leave?

Read more

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

“Photo of POTUS mtg w speechwriters Cody Keenan and Jon Favreau today.”Pete Souza, Director of White House Photography, with accompanying photograph.

Reporter encounters wall with Capitol Hill flack

“New boundaries of blow off. Called congressional office. Press sec doesn’t want to talk. I ask for voicemail. ‘She doesn’t take voicemail.’ — HuffPost‘s Sam Stein.

Weingarten reacts to poop idea 

Military reporter for SpaceNews Mike Gruss writes, “You know with some crafty maneuvering you can use the same bag for multiple poops, right?” To which WaPo‘s poopy Pulitzer Prize columnist Gene Weingarten replies, “You are an animal.”

Politico Playbook publish time: 8:20 a.m.

Humility is…

“On MSNBC in a few minutes, acting like I know stuff.” — The Atlantic‘s Molly Ball.

Where’s Dick Morris these days?

From Media Matters Spokeswoman Jess Levin6:22 p.m. “Dick Morris – Absent From Fox For Nearly Three Months — To Appear On CNN” 6:25 p.m. “Dick Morris hasn’t been on Fox since Nov 12, 2012. Post 2008 election, he was on 19 times.” See here and here. The Wrap reported late yesterday that Fox News has dropped him. Never fear that he might disappear completely. Watch for him tonight on CNN’s “Piers Morgan Tonight” at 9 p.m. ET. If Morris is looking for a reference he might try WaPo‘s Erik Wemple, who writes this about him today: “Vast arrogance and loose, poorly substantiated facts: a great combination for a cable-news contributor in these modern times.” But he might do well to avoid Wemple as a life coach. He writes, “Don’t worry, Morris: It’s the end only of your relevance.”

The Ideas Guy

“Hoping to convince @BuzzFeedBen to give me a location consult on future #BuzzFeedBrews at tonight’s launch.” — Tim Miller, Deputy Communications Director, RNC. The event was held at The 201 Bar on Capitol Hill. Miller explained to FishbowlDC, “Just joking with them about going to a Hill bar instead of bringing it to Big John’s neighborhood. Shaw needs some politics love.” Big John is, of course, BuzzFeed Washington Bureau Chief John Stanton.

A profound thought from HuffPost‘s liberal media writer Jason Linkins. Read more

Battle of the WaPo Drama Queens

Act I Scene I

This is what happens when you have multiple blogs and hot heads at a newspaper. They get catty. They fight, scratch, kick. Whatever it takes to make a coworker look like a dumbass. Nothing a few trust exercises in the woods couldn’t resolve, but we think WaPo‘s Erik Wemple might not catch Dana Milbank, no matter how petite Milbank is, or how much bicycling Wemple does to keep himself fit and capable of catching his colleague.

This morning at 9:09 a.m. Wemple ran a post about a recent Hartford meeting on gun violence, after which Milbank “ruled” against the audience as to whether a father of a Sandy Hook victim was heckled. Ruled? Is Milbank a judge?

Wemple cracked, “Milbank and others on ‘Reliable Sources’ appeared to conclude that the whole heckling thing was a ‘judgment call.’ Right, an easy judgment call. (And Milbank takes issue with the judgment of this post).”

Act I Scene II. Milbank responds! Read more

John Dickerson Under Fire

CBS Political News Director John Dickerson is defending himself from critics who say he has exposed his personal favoritism for President Obama.

Last week, Dickerson wrote a controversial piece for Slate that said Obama should “go for the throat!” and “declare war” on the Republican Party in his second term. An excerpt:

“Obama’s only remaining option is to pulverize. Whether he succeeds in passing legislation or not, given his ambitions, his goal should be to delegitimize his opponents. Through a series of clarifying fights over controversial issues, he can force Republicans to either side with their coalition’s most extreme elements or cause a rift in the party that will leave it, at least temporarily, in disarray.”

Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh highlighted the column on his program yesterday. “This is your media,” he told the audience. “This is who they are. This is what they want to happen.  This is what they are advocating, and this is what they will support.”

FoxNews.com also weighed inRead more

Layoffs at Politico? HuffPost, Please.

When HuffPost‘s Michael Calderone left in Politico in March of 2010, no love was lost on either end. The whys of that are hard to decipher — he broke news and worked at a feverish pace as most reporters there do — but the fit was never a good one. Which may help explain his rollout of anti-Politico stories in recent months, the latest of which has Politico laying people off, even though the decisions appear to be nothing of the kind. In June of last year, Calderone wrote a lengthy insiders piece on his former employer. In it, he reported on the “stressful, hamster wheel” environment in which a “handful of reporters receive preferential treatment from company leadership, while the majority are left drifting in a far off galaxy.”

In his most recent story on Politico, Calderone reported that two people have been let go in recent days — Photo Editor Jay Westcott, who opted to go public with the news on Facebook and Twitter and Jess Kamen, a technology reporter. These things are usually quiet matters. But there’s nothing quiet about Westcott, who also went public last September about his split from his fiancé, Madeline Marshall, also a Politico employee, and told his Facebook pals about his heartbreak. After she changed her status to “single”, Westcott snapped, “I took that picture. Take it down.” Eventually he seemed to come to his senses when he wrote, “I am devastated. I have to get off Facebook.”

So two people were shown the door. As Politico’s Editor-in-Chief John Harris eventually told Calderone for his story, Publisher Robert Allbritton has given them the green light to expand and bring on 30 new hires in 2013 — does this sound like a season of layoffs? To be sure, the word “layoff” is a loaded one and HuffPost, a Politico competitor, was sure to use it in their headline. The word, like it or not, denotes a company that’s struggling. On Sunday, WaPo media writer Erik Wemple also questioned Calderone’s use of the word. “Here’s one instance in which terminology matters a great deal,’ he wrote. “‘Layoffs,’ after all, sends a signal that the organization is shrinking, unable to meet its budgets with current staffing levels. If that’s the case here, it’s a giant story…” If not, he added, it’s a “far less consequential story.”

But Politico, struggling? WaPo recently made big offers to Alexander Burns and Maggie Haberman. Both rejected them to stay.

In Wemple’s story we learn that Politicos such as Harris, Jim VandeHei, Mike Allen, Haberman, Danielle Jones and Kim Kingsley have all signed multi-year contracts, crushing any impression that an exodus is underway. “He got played by bad sources because a few junior people left,” a media observer explained. “Politico has people come and go every week, so some variation of his dumb and naïve story could run most months.”

Asked to comment on whether he holds any ill will against his former employer and whether “layoffs” was a proper word to use, Calderone remarked to FishbowlDC… Read more

Fox News Picky On Who Can Talk Guns

A story by New York magazine’s Gabriel Sherman Monday left readers with the impression that FNC was stifling debate on gun control in light of the Sandy Hook shooting. But subsequent stories and coverage of the issue concerning FNC have shown that’s actually not the case.

“It’s by no means universal,” Sherman told FishbowlDC. “It’s more nuanced. They’re just taking a low-key approach.”

Sherman’s initial story said FNC’s weekend producer David Clark had instructed lower producers not to broach gun control, given the current sensitivity of the subject. Despite the email, gun control was discussed several different times that weekend (13 times, by Jeff Poor‘s count at The Daily Caller). Stories in both The Hollywood Reporter and The Daily Caller pointed these instances out, though Sherman’s story did as well.

Since then, a few seemingly contradictory events have taken place in the FNC world… Read more

WaPo Misses Teen Rape Story: The Big Question is Why?

Last week a variety of news outlets reported that a teenage girl was raped by an Uber driver and that it was caught on tape due to surveillance cameras at a family’s northwest Washington home. The home, situated in an affluent neighborhood mere blocks from the National Cathedral in Cleveland Park, is nearby to where WaPo CEO Don Graham used to live.

And yet, guess which hometown publication had NOTHING on it? If you guessed WaPo, you’d be right. So much for local news. Right, Marty Baron, who is apparently crazy for local news, doesn’t start until January 2, 2013.

The order of reportage is as follows: The news first broke on a Cleveland Park listserv and was then reported by Popville, which covers D.C., on Dec. 14 at 3:50 p.m. Washington City Paper ran a story that same day at 7 p.m. but gave no credit to Popville. A site known as Nibletz also ran something that day — no specific time stamp. NBC Washington waited until that following Monday, a gargantuan three days after Popville, to run anything. They, too, gave no credit to the previous publications that had stories.

Why the lack of coverage by WaPo? Read more

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