If the media has sufficient of a conscience to revisit what they did fallacious in masking (or ignoring) sexual harassment allegations in opposition to Andrew Cuomo, they may begin with Eric Lach of The New Yorker, who requested: “Who Ordered The Smear Campaign Against Cuomo’s First Accuser?”
Lach regarded into what occurred after Cuomo’s first accuser, Lindsey Boylan, went public on Twitter again on December 13, 2020. However she did not do interviews. She simply tweeted. Lack wrote: “Quickly after she went public, somebody tried to wreck Boylan’s credibility and undercut her accusations by leaking damaging details about her to the press.”
Inside hours, a number of reporters mentioned that they had “obtained” state-government paperwork referring to Boylan’s job efficiency below Cuomo. The paperwork—described by the Associated Press as “personnel memos,” by the New York Post as “personnel paperwork,” and by the AlbanyOccasions Union as “personnel data”—mentioned that a number of girls had complained to state officers that Boylan had “behaved in a manner in direction of them that was harassing, belittling, and had yelled and been usually unprofessional.”
It included a racial angle. The Submit story reported “three black staff went to state human assets officers accusing Boylan, who’s white, of being a ‘bully’ who ‘treats them like kids.’ ” AP reported the paperwork they obtained mentioned that Boylan resigned after being “recommended” in regards to the complaints in a gathering with a high administration lawyer. Reporters who wished to dig into Boylan’s accusations in opposition to Cuomo now needed to take care of questions on Boylan.
One lawyer who represented some Harvey Weinstein accusers mentioned within the article this tactic may truly be unlawful, and at greatest was “an abuse of energy.”
Lach included this critique:
John Kaehny, the chief director of the nonprofit Reinvent Albany, which advocates for transparency and accountability in New York state authorities, mentioned that the press additionally wanted to look at their complicity within the leak of the paperwork. “It’s the Cuomo administration’s M.O. to aim to bully and terrorize folks—they use no matter software that’s at hand,” Kaehny mentioned. “It’s not simply this specific case of tried character assassination in opposition to Lindsey Boylan. The use and manipulation of the press is bread-and-butter political warfare. That is an space the place the press actually need to look themselves within the eye.”
Steve Krakauer concluded in his Fourth Watch newsletter:
What number of within the media selected to look the opposite manner due to “personnel information” leaked to them so as to denigrate an accuser? However extra importantly – how a lot will we not even know, as a result of Gov. Cuomo and his allies efficiently spun their associates within the media away from any destructive story?
Cuomo has been extraordinarily pleasant with the nationwide press for years, and definitely over the past yr. They’ve protected him each step of the best way. Because of The New Yorker, we now have one potential motive why. They’ve been cozy, they have been associates — and in a single case, literal household. And also you at all times defend the household.