In Thursday’s Politico Playbook, Mike Allen lectured HuffPost‘s Peter H. Stone on the rules of reporting. “PLAYBOOK LIFE LESSONS – WHY YOU SHOULDN’T GO AHEAD AND POST A STORY WITHOUT TALKING TO THE KEY PERSON, even if they’re traveling,” Allen wrote in Playbook.

The “key person” in this case is former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour. A Wednesday story by Stone cited two Republican “operatives” who said Barbour has decided to leave American Crossroads because he disagrees with its strategy going forward to get Republicans elected in the 2014 midterm elections. American Crossroads is a super PAC run by Republican strategist Karl Rove. Barbour was a heavy fundraiser for the group and a surrogate for GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney throughout the 2012 campaign cycle.

Stone’s story said Barbour was “traveling and did not respond to a request for comment.”

Allen received exclusive comment from Barbour after the story published. Barbour told Playbook:

“The [HuffPost] article …. has no basis in fact. Nobody at [HuffPost] even talked to me about it. From the beginning of my involvement with American Crossroads in 2011, I repeatedly, consistently and publicly said my participation with Crossroads was to try to help elect a Republican president in the 2012 election. That effort ended last November; so did my American Crossroads effort. I left with high regard and respect for American Crossroads and its entire team, many of whom have been friends as well as colleagues of mine for many years. …”

Though Barbour denies HuffPost‘s report, Stone tells FishbowlDC he stands by his sources… Read more