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Posts Tagged ‘Joe Williams’

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day


“This is how I’m keeping cool.” — NBC Washington’s Angie Goff over the weekend.

Journo encounters threesome

“Just took the dog for a walk in the woods. Happened upon a threesome. Stark naked. Clearly strung out. #dida180 #myeyes #MYEYES” — Takoma Park, Md. writer Carol Blymire.

Daily Caller‘s Michelle Fields as Mother Theresa

“Only in DC does a man walk into the metro with a broken foot and arm and no one offers him their seat.” — Michelle Fields.

Paul Wharton in mourning

“We had the memorial for our loving friend Butch Hopkins today. Just now ‘patched into’ the grief, my heart hurts literally.” — Style expert and TV host Paul Wharton.

Important Q to ponder: “When is the @einsteins finally going to open in Union Station?” — NBC Washington’s Matt Glassman.

Self-appointed media critic

“Anybody know if there’s a network where I can watch two non-subject matter experts debate policy?” — Politico‘s Alexander Burns.

The TV critic

“I mean, the premise of Newsroom is fairly interesting. But did they have to make the primary focus/main character be Sorkin’s scripting?” — C-SPAN Communications Director Howard Mortman.

Russia TV: The go-to network for hard-hitting Joe Williams’ Interviews

“Jesus Christ. Just watched three Euronews packages. Every damn one started with a wideshot of the EU flags. Is creativity that f*ing hard?!” — Russia TV Senior Producer Lucy Kafanov. Um, hey Russia TV, is asking Politico‘s Joe Williams a real, challenging question that f*ing hard?!

Better Left Unsaid

“YES! Got my tweet on #edshow! And got way too excited about it.” — Mediaite White House Correspondent Tommy Christopher.

Interesting co-byline this morning (wink! wink!): Daily Caller‘s Jamie Weinstein and Michelle Fields. Nothing like bonding over Jeremiah Wright.

Peter Ogburn contributed to this report.

Kurtz Gives Williams Cheese With His Whine

Two weeks ago Politico suspended its White House Correspondent Joe Williams for going on national TV and declaring that Mitt Romney is more at ease with white people among some “dick” slurs about the presumed Republican presidential nominee and his wife on Twitter.

Seemed like a no-brainer, right? Except nothing is simple when a journalist hires a lawyer, or in this case, already has one waiting in the wings.

The suspension wore on for another week until the peaches over at Politico said they and Williams had reached a mutual conclusion that he should move on. We soon learned that won’t happen until Williams lands another job. Then, on the morning of July 4, we learned that Williams assaulted his ex-wife in February, pled guilty to assault in May and is on probation until November. Politico won’t say what they knew or when they knew it. For now, Williams remains on the payroll.

Enter CNN “Reliable Sources” host Howard Kurtz, the nation’s premier media journalist, who isn’t exactly known for his expediency. Just ask ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.). It took Howie five days to deem that story worthy of covering. Strangely, Kurtz felt no need to interview Williams for two consecutive Sundays after news of his suspension broke on June 22. But suddenly three weeks later, he’s all hot for Williams. What’s the sudden draw? Could it have been Williams’ absurd appearance on Russia TV where the ladies gave him a free pass to blame the right wing media for his problems? The only new news on Williams last week was the assault on his ex-wife. We thought maybe Howie might do something crazy for a media reporter and ask him about it.

Wrong. Howie wondered about the reporter’s “personal” problems. Williams, of course, said his “personal problems” have nothing to do with his professional failings and that sites such as ours crossed a line. Kurtz: “Did you want to stay at Politico?” Williams: “I understand their decision, I understand what led them to have us come to this kind of a conclusion of the situation.” Kurtz: “So you were forced to leave, you didn’t have a choice.” Williams: “I had a choice but the choices weren’t good. …They said for me to come back and have them have confidence in me … would have been a little bit tricky, especially after all this stuff had come out.” So what were the choices? Who knows if there even were any? Howie never bothered to ask. For the umpteenth time Williams said his words on Romney were “inartfully phrased.”

One tiny question: WHO CARES, HOWIE? This is repeated puke. At this point Williams has talking points for his talking points.

Finally Howie asked about “problems in his personal life.” Despite the fact that Williams released a public statement detailing his version of specifically what happened, Howie didn’t bother.  Williams bizarrely equated his situation to CNN’s Anderson Cooper coming out of the closet last week because who knew Cooper was gay? “I think my personal life was brought into the situation unfairly,” Williams said, beginning what was several minutes of whining about how everything that happened was not his fault. “I think it was much in analogous to [sic] Anderson talking about how his sexuality had become an issue and he wanted to dispel that,” he said. “…I don’t think what my personal life involves has anything to do with how I do my job. It has everything to do with how I protect my children, how I protect other people who are involved in the situation, that I believe crossed the line.”

Howie “fired” back: “But didn’t you make yourself fair game? Once you become under scrutiny people are going to look at all aspects of your life.” At this point Williams pulled out his blame the right wing media talking points, although it’s peculiar: FBDC isn’t a right wing site. But let’s listen in as Williams barfs up more lunacy: “The media on the right decided that this was an issue and did so without context, without giving opportunity for a fair response and without examining the entire context.” Read more on Williams’ victim mentality and continued whining.

It’s no secret that Howie won’t ask the tough questions or prep himself enough to ask proper followups. But this was low even for Howie. He gave Williams the easiest ride in the world and another chance to recycle his blame the right wing media talking points. Congrats Howie! Even Russia TV has you beat.

And that’s just embarrassing.

 

 

 

Politico’s Joe Williams to Appear on CNN

Looks like Joe Williams‘ 15 minutes of fame is not quite over. Politico’s ex- White House Correspondent but still a Politico employee is scheduled to appear on CNN’s “Reliable Sources” with Howard Kurtz on Sunday. Will be interesting to see if Kurtz can somehow outperform Russia TV, a network that didn’t bother to mention the assault Williams pled guilty to in May or the probation term he’s currently serving. Will also be noteworthy to see whether Kurtz challenges Williams on the notion that a vast right wing media “noise machine” is trying to bring him down.

Good luck Howie! We’ll be watching.

Please note: Williams’ attorney, Shawn Bartley, is out of state until Monday. We hope Williams can reach him before then should he want counsel. A paralegal from Bartley’s office phoned FBDC this afternoon to get back to us on Bartley’s behalf. She had no idea if Bartley had a comment or why she was even calling really. In a statement, Williams complained that FBDC didn’t properly contact his lawyer. We called his lawyer on both his cell and office phones and didn’t receive a call back.

Ask Piranhamous Anything

It’s Friday, which means it’s time for another installment of: “Ask Piranhamous Anything.” And we do mean anything. Send your queries to FishbowlDC@mediabistro.com. This isn’t an advice column — Piranhamous doesn’t know what the hell you should do with your life any more than you do — and worse, he doesn’t care. Try to keep your questions short — we want to keep this fun, simple, funny and insightful.

1. In light of the new disclosure about ex-Politico White House Correspondent Joe Williams being on probation, should newspapers be doing background checks before they hire reporters? Should reporters be forced to tell their employers if they are arrested? Poor Joe Williams, whining about big, bad conservative journalists who’ve reported on him, um, “issues.” One wonders what Joe can see from his cross. But he’s the perfect example of why background checks should be an option. But it’s less about their personal lives than it is about their professionalism, or lack thereof. Williams is an angry, defensive left-wing jackass. He didn’t just become one last week, he’s always been one. He was just so irrelevant no one noticed. He made the mistake of making bigoted comments that he’s undoubtedly made countless times in private, in public and on TV. The rest of his life came out as a result. The lesson for aspiring “Joes” out there is this: if you call half the country bigots for the “crime” of disagreeing with you politically, don’t be surprised if they look into your life. Do I care that he’s been canned? Yes. But only because it makes me laugh. Should reporters be forced to tell their bosses they’ve been arrested? No. But they probably should…if they like having a job.

2. What do you think ought to happen with NBC’s Today Show? DId you think it was right of them to give Ann Curry the ax? Babe Ruth was the best player in baseball…until he wasn’t. His time had passed, and so has Today’s. At least as currently configured. It’s a horrible show. No one in history has ever thought, “Man, I can’t wait to hear what Matt Lauer has to say about this.” no host should ever stick around long enough for the audience to realize they’re an idiot. Too many have and are still there. Ann seemed nice enough, but she may look back on this time the way people how got off the Titanic in Ireland look at their luck. What should happen to Today? Turnover, less hackivism, some dissenting voices and some *gasp* real journalism. I realize that’s a pipe dream when talking about an NBC property, but that’s also why NBC properties are seeing their ratings hit an iceberg.

3. You have to spend a full 24 hours watching one show and here are your choices: FNC’s “The Five,” MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” or CNN’s John King USA? What do you choose and why? And no, sleeping is not allowed. You’re evil. I’d go with “John King USA.” The reason being it’s no longer on the air. “The Five” isn’t good. It’s Dana Perino and Bob Beckle, two people who’ve worked in government, and three other interchangeable Chatty-Cathys with long, bare legs whose job is to talk about news they’ve never covered or been a part of. It’s like an uninteresting conversation happening at the table next to you; you might listen in every once in a while, but you’ll never learn anything you didn’t already now and you’ll wonder later why you wasted your time. Still, it’s better than “The Cycle” on MSNBC…but then so is Penicillin resistant syphilis. And speaking of Penicillin resistant syphilis, there’s “Morning Joe!” I’m just kidding, Morning Joe can not suck, just not that often because Mika only gets so many vacation days.

Joe Williams: True or False?

On Thursday evening ex-Politico White House Correspondent but still Politico employee Joe Williams finally responded to news that he pled guilty of second degree assault in May against his ex-wife, author Amy Alexander, and is now on probation until late November. We didn’t want to ruin his lies with facts in the moment, as it’s fair to let anyone have his say. But now we’re going to clear up the facts with a good, old-fashioned game of True or False.

 

1. “On Wednesday a conservative web site published a one-sided account of a dispute between me and my ex-wife, Amy Alexander — an incident that has nothing to do with my journalism career or work with and departure from Politico.” False. As much as Williams would like to lump FishbowlDC in with Breitbart.com and The Daily Caller as a “conservative website” to paint himself as a victim of the right, we are a media site that covers all political persuasions. What’s more, Williams thought we were Free Beacon, which he claimed initially broke the story. For a longtime member of the media to not get the difference between FBDC and Free Beacon means he’s out of touch.

2. “The facts: Amy Alexander, my ex-wife, confronted me in February when I came to pick up our autistic son for a therapy appointment. My wife accosted me in front of him and I defended myself. In retaliation to my protective order against her, she wrongfully filed charges against me — several days after the incident. In the best interest of my children, and Amy, I chose to avoid an acrimonious, embarrassing trial.” True or False, who knows? We’ll give this one to you, Joe, as we have no idea if any of this is true or not. But we do know this: Alexander is 5’7″ and 138 pounds. You are a 6′, 200 pound former football player. The Silver Spring District Court documents report that you pled guilty to second degree assault. We’re going to go ahead and assume that the Silver Spring District Court is not part of a vast right-wing conspiracy. What’s more, wow, we had no idea that Chris Brown and Rihanna had moved to Washington!

3. “…the right-wing noise machine decided to add fuel to the fire by publishing half truths taken out of context.” False. Joe, we reported the facts based on the court docs. And once again, we’re not part of this “right-wing noise machine” defense that you’ve created for yourself.

4. “I was with my children when the FishbowlDC reporter called me; I gave her the personal cell number of my lawyer, Shawn Bartley, and urged her to talk to him. Instead, she went through the motions, leaving a message on his office phone even though it was July 4. The story ran without waiting to hear from him, or without calling me back – a step most responsible journalists would have taken.” True and False. I did call Williams on Wednesday afternoon. I heard him say “son” a few times, indicating he was with a child. The call took several tries to complete as the phone reception was poor and the calls kept getting dropped. Williams did give me Bartley’s cell phone. (True) I called it and the cell would not allow me to leave a message, which is why I looked him up and phoned his office. FBDC waited hours before running the story. If it was important for Bartley to get back to us, which, by the way, he has not given a comment to any reporter who has approached him this week, Williams might have told his lawyer that it was vital for him to do so. And sorry to burst your bubble, Joe, but most reporters, with court docs in hand after contacting all the appropriate players for comment, would run the story. So … False on that assertion.

5. “…the right-wing noise machine will relentlessly bully anyone who publicly disagrees with their narrow world view. With this story, they’ve also crossed the line from questionable reporting into full-blown hack journalism.” False. Yes, conservative publications like Breitbart.com and The Daily Caller have also been covering this story. But no, we’re not part of a “right-wing noise machine” who is “bullying” you. You’re painting yourself as a victim, and you know what? Didn’t work for Hillary Clinton either. There was no “questionable reporting” here and we suggest if you think so that you and your incommunicado lawyer take it up with the Silver Spring District Court.

Joe Williams Still Works For Politico

In what is a surprising revelation this morning, The Daily Caller‘s Alex Pappas reports that Joe Williams is still technically employed with Politico. In short, they’re doing what they’ve allowed other reporters they want out to do — they’re allowing him to shack up in Rosslyn until he finds another job. Under the latest developments, buckle up, this could take awhile.

See the story.

Joe Williams Defends Himself From Assault ‘Incident’

In response to a report yesterday that former Politico White House correspondent Joe Williams pleaded guilty to assaulting his ex-wife earlier this year, Williams released the following statement:

“On Wednesday a conservative web site published a one-sided account of a dispute between me and my ex-wife, Amy Alexander — an incident that has nothing to do with my journalism career or work with and departure from Politico.

“The facts: Amy Alexander, my ex-wife, confronted me in February when I came to pick up our autistic son for a therapy appointment. My wife accosted me in front of him and I defended myself. In retaliation to my protective order against her, she wrongfully filed charges against me — several days after the incident. In the best interest of my children, and Amy, I chose to avoid an acrimonious, embarrassing trial.

“Sadly, this is the latest incident in a difficult post-divorce relationship; I’ve contacted police and social services several times because of my former spouse’s behavior. Most people want above all to keep these matters private; I’m no different.

“Yet earlier this week, my former spouse threatened several times to create with a ‘PR disaster’ for me without a clear reason, vowing I ‘won’t work in this town again’ if she chose. As a result, the right-wing noise machine decided to add fuel to the fire by publishing half truths taken out of context.

“I was with my children when the FishbowlDC reporter called me; I gave her the personal cell number of my lawyer, Shawn Bartley, and urged her to talk to him. Instead, she went through the motions, leaving a message on his office phone even though it was July 4. The story ran without waiting to hear from him, or without calling me back – a step most responsible journalists would have taken.

“Last Monday on the BIll Press Show, I anticipated conservative reporters would come at me again for pointing out their dubious credibility. Unfortunately, they have, proving my larger point: the right-wing noise machine will relentlessly bully anyone who publicly disagrees with their narrow world view.

“With this story, they’ve also crossed the line from questionable reporting into full-blown hack journalism.”

Politico Won’t ‘Weigh in’ on Joe Williams

Politico has gone silent over the new discovery that the publication’s ex-White House Correspondent Joe Williams pled guilty in May to assaulting his ex-wife. At the time, he was placed on probation until November. We wanted to know if brass was aware of any of it when they ultimately agreed to part ways with him last week.

Editor-in-Chief John Harris did not respond to a FBDC request for comment Wednesday but did respond this morning to say, “Sorry I was off the grid on the 4th. This isn’t the kind of thing I would weigh in on anyway.”

Ex-Politico’s Williams Claims Story Was ‘One-Sided’

Ex-Politico White House Correspondent Joe Williams once again resurrected his Twitter account last night to try to cast doubt on a story FBDC broke Wednesday on his pleading guilty to second degree assault against his ex-wife, author Amy Alexander. First off, he strangely declared that the conservative publication Free Beacon wrote the story and proceeded to link to the FBDC piece. The assault took place in February of 2012. In May Williams pled guilty and according to court documents remains on probation until Nov. 24, 2012. Coming up: Williams just informed Mediabistro that he plans to issue a statement regarding the dispute with his ex-wife.

A sampling of his tweets:

  • ex-wife, jackass – and I was not convicted, only accused. typical conservative: light on the facts @Conservative419 @politico
  • @SHannitysHair it ain’t so – they got half the story, and weren’t interested in balance or context.

Memo to Williams: Half the story? We based what we wrote on Silver Spring District Court documents. And not convicted? You weren’t convicted because you pled guilty and pleaded out a number of charges. And balance and context? We phoned you, your ex-wife and your lawyer. You chose not to comment. Your lawyer never returned the call. Your ex-wife refused to comment. There aren’t many more sides than four: You, her, your lawyer, and the court.

Note to reader: Please note in that second tweet by Williams, he is not calling his wife a jackass. Rather, he is calling one of the many angry readers who wrote him online a “jackass.”

Ex-Politico WH Correspondent Joe Williams Pleaded Guilty to Assaulting Ex-Wife

It turns out there’s another side to Joe Williams, the White House Correspondent and former college football player who recently parted ways with Politico. On May 24 of this year, he pled guilty to second degree assault against his ex-wife, paid a $200 fine and received six months of probation. His probation ends on November 24, 2012. Other charges he pleaded out include disorderly conduct and affray (i.e. a public order offense that consists of fighting in a public place). His ex-wife, author Amy Alexander, obtained a year long court order against him that began in February, 2012. The pair has two children whom he regularly sees. According to Silver Spring court documents obtained by FishbowlDC, Williams is to abide by the following:

On February 6, 2o12, there was a hearing at the District Court in Silver Spring, Md. Case type: Domestic Violence. Plaintiff: Amy Alexander. Defendant: Williams Joseph P Jr. The result was as follows:

COURT ORDERS:
SHALL NOT ABUSE
SHALL NOT CONTACT
SHALL NOT ENTER RESIDENCE
SHALL STAY AWAY FROM SCHOOL
SHALL STAY AWAY FROM CHILD CARE PROVIDERS
CUSTODY

On February 10, 2012 there was a second hearing. Same plaintiff and defendant. The result was as follows:

COURT ORDERS:
SHALL NOT ABUSE
SHALL NOT ENTER RESIDENCE
SURRENDER FIREARMS

We reached out to Williams today by phone to inquire about the court order and the reasons why it was issued. He called this a “ridiculous story” and said he has nothing to say until we speak with his Silver Spring attorney Shawn Bartley. We left a message for Bartley at his office. We requested comment from Alexander. We also sought comment from Politico Editor-in-Chief John Harris to inquire if he knew there was a current court order and assault charge against Williams. We also asked what Politico‘s policy is about conducting criminal background checks on potential employees. Most publications simply ask for references.

As has been widely reported, Politico suspended Williams after he told a national TV audience that Mitt Romney is more at ease around white people and called his own publication a “shitburger” when it comes to diversity and race. Williams lawyered up. He went on and off Twitter so much it gave us whiplash. Ultimately Politico‘s Editor, Harris, released a memo declaring that the publication and Williams came to a mutual agreement that Williams should move on.

Alexander filed a previous complaint against Williams in 2007. On August 2, 2007, Alexander filed what looks to be a restraining order against Williams. This appears to be temporary and lasted only from August 2, 2007 to August 9, 2007. On Aug. 9 the case was dismissed after the plaintiff withdrew the complaint. Alexander filed for divorce from Williams in July 9, 2007 after approximately 12 years of marriage. The court granted the divorce on April 7, 2008.

Noteworthy: In 2006, Alexander bylined a “Special to the Washington Post” story entitled “Mom vs. the Machine.” This had to be when the couple were in happier times, as she mentioned him in a piece concerning how to raise her children in the internet age.

An excerpt: “Like many parents, my relationship with technology is decidedly practical. My husband and I, friends our age, and co-workers are comfortable with e-mail and office programs such as Word and Excel. We’re e-mailing photos, downloading music and playing around with digital video projects.”

Williams’ Facebook page depicts him as a typical, loving father. He has many pictures of his children, one of him giving his son a piggyback ride. As noted above, the court order began in February.

UPDATE: Alexander returned our request for comment and replied by email, “I can’t comment on a legal case but will say that I sincerely hope that Joe Williams finds his professional footing and that he also begins to take seriously his responsibilities as the father of our two children.”

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