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Vargas, Marie Claire Star In Breastfeeding Photogate

Ashley Judd topless on the cover is one thing. A breastfeeding ex-nightly news anchor, it appears, is quite another. Elizabeth Vargas, the former anchor of ABC’s World News Tonight who lost — or left — her job before going on maternity leave, is disappointed that Marie Claire chose to photoshop her breastfeeding behind the anchor desk to illustrate its feature interview with her in the December issue, on which Judd appears topless on its cover — a first, according to editor Joanna Coles.

Drudge has the point-counterpoint:

A source close to Vargas: “Elizabeth was more than happy to sit for the interview but was disturbed that the magazine would set aside basic journalistic standards to photoshop her head onto a fake image. Vargas did joke that her real baby is cuter, that she is proud to breastfeed her newborn but wouldn’t do it at the anchor desk and that she wouldn’t be caught dead in that ugly gold blouse!”

A Marie Claire spokesperson: “There isn’t a working mother who can’t relate to this image and immediately identify with the very real dilemma Elizabeth Vargas wrestled with. We do not believe anyone seriously thought she would nurse and report the news the same time! This is an image illustration and is stated so with the byline of this story. We only want to make the point that women choosing between their career and being a parent is a tough decision that we are very sensitive to.”

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