Los Angeles Times Bans Edwards Scandal Story
Via Mickey Kaus, we learn that the Los Angeles Times has apparently banned its bloggers from mentioning the Edwards/Rielle Hunter story.
From: “Pierce, Tony”
Date: July 24, 2008 10:54:41 AM PDT
Subject: john edwards
There has been a little buzz surrounding John Edwards and his alleged affair. Because the only source has been the National Enquirer we have decided not to cover the rumors or salacious speculations. So I am asking you all not to blog about this topic until further notified.
If you have any questions or are ever in need of story ideas that would best fit your blog, please don’t hesitate to ask
Now, the only thing about the Hunter story that actually interests me is the inside baseball: The fact that it might have the beneficial side effect of preventing Edwards from being appointed to an Attorney General position for which he is supremely unqualified in an Obama Administration. Other than that, I really don’t care whether Edwards was at that hotel visiting Hunter or not. Nor do I care if her child is his or if he was sleeping with her while his wife had cancer.
No, the reason I mention this ban is to point out that the Times was not hobbled by any such scruples when John McCain was accused — on much thinner evidence — of having possibly, maybe, sort of having had an inappropriate relationship with Vicki Iseman almost a decade earlier. In fact, a search of the Times website for her name brings up 101 results. Doubtless they’d argue that the Enquirer isn’t a credible source. But the same could be (and was) said of the two anonymous and admittedly disgruntled former aides who were peddling the Iseman story.
One needn’t leap to any conclusions here; one need only take a small step and there conclusions are.
UPDATE (James Joyner): Don Frederick and Andrew Malcolm run an interesting site at Top of the Ticket, so I’m a bit bemused that Pierce, pictured above from his days running the LAist gossip rag, is stepping in to teach them professional journalistic ethics.