Skip to comments.Representative Louise Slaughter's Dan Rather Moment
Posted on 02/09/2005 6:44:39 PM PST by dirtboy
On February 7th, US Representative Louise Slaughter, D-NY, issued a press release on Jeff Gannon, a reporter from the web news site Talon News who somehow, despite the best efforts of the Mainstream Media, managed to gain access to the inner sanctum of White House press conferences. Gannon has since resigned from Talon News.
In her press release, Representative Slaughter made the following statements:
Mr. President, I am sure we both agree the White House Press Corps is an honored institution in America that should be beyond the scope of partisan meddling, and that a free and independent media is the cornerstone of our success as a democracy. Likewise, I am sure we can both agree the American people have the right to expect that journalists who question their President everyday are experienced, independent, and perhaps most importantly, unbiased in their approach...
Mr. President, your Administration has driven the so-called "values" debate in this country. But the most important value for those of us in public service should always be honesty and integrity, particularly when considering the manner in which we conduct our affairs of state.
The impassioned words roll off the press release ... unbiased ... honesty ... integrity...
And then, in order to support her charges against Gannon, Representative Slaughter cited an open letter from the Niagara Falls Reporter, which levelelled, among other things, allegations published in the Philadelphia Daily News:
He is affiliated with an organization called Talon News, and is frequently called on by White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan and President Bush. This individual has no background in journalism whatsoever, and his "syndicated column" appears solely on his personal Web site, www.jeffgannon.com. According to the Philadelphia Daily News, "Jeff Gannon" isn't even his real name.
In his biography at the Talon News site, where he holds the title of "Washington Bureau Chief," he claims to be a graduate of the "Pennsylvania State University System" and the Leadership Institute Broadcast School of Journalism.
While the 23 schools in the Penn State system award diplomas, the system itself does not, and the Daily News investigation has thus far failed to turn up a "Jeff Gannon" who holds a degree in education from Penn State, as this person claims he does...
Sounds pretty damning.
However, this is the age of Google and web searches, the greatest equalizer since the Colt revolver. A search of Philly.com, the website for the Philadelphia Daily News and the Philadelphia Inquirer, along with archive searches performed by a source at the Daily News, turned up no such story. Additional Google research finally revealed that a blog affiliated with the Daily News by political reporter William Bunch had this story about Gannon, and is apparently the source referenced by this article:
"Jeff Gannon" and Karl Rove -- one degree of separation
Who is the conservative pseudo-journalist who calls himself "Jeff Gannon" and has a hard-to-get White House press pass, so he can toss softball questions at President Bush and rewrite press releases for a right-wing outlet called Talon News?
We wish we knew. We're on the trail, though. Here's a few more interesting things about Gannon, whose unlikely West Wing access is shedding new light on the unseemly White House propaganda machine.
One thing is that there's an excellent chance he's a native Pennsylvanian (wouldn't you just know it?). His "bio" on the Talon News site states "Jeff is a graduate of the Pennsylvania State University System and holds a Bachelor of Science in Education." The vast majority of students who attend Penn State, either at State College or its many satellite campuses, tend to be in-state residents...
Additional reading of Bunch's website shows that he maintains a countdown for Bush's impeachment. Where is Representative's Slaughter's concern about Bunch's failure to be unbiased?
But I digress. Now, let's compare the open letter from the Niagara Falls Reporter, which somehow failed to mention that the piece in question was from a reporter's blog and wasn't actually in the paper itself, to the actual content of Bunch's blog entry:
Niagara Falls Reporter: According to the Philadelphia Daily News, "Jeff Gannon" isn't even his real name.
William Bunch: Bunch makes no such claim.
Niagara Falls Reporter: the Daily News investigation has thus far failed to turn up a "Jeff Gannon" who holds a degree in education from Penn State, as this person claims he does.
William Bunch: One thing is that there's an excellent chance he's a native Pennsylvanian (wouldn't you just know it?). His "bio" on the Talon News site states "Jeff is a graduate of the Pennsylvania State University System and holds a Bachelor of Science in Education." The vast majority of students who attend Penn State, either at State College or its many satellite campuses, tend to be in-state residents.
Notice there is no mention that any investigation was made by the Daily News (or Bunch) to see if Gannon had a degree from any of the Penn State campuses.
So we have two clear lies in an open letter cited by a United States Congresswoman as the rationale for a press release to attack the Bush Admininstration for dishonesty. Representative Slaughter also chastised Jeff Gannon's bias but failed to call either the writers of the open letter or William Bunch for their bias. Honesty and integrity apparently are nothing more to Representative Slaughter than words, devoid of their underlying values.
The fact checking involved isn't rocket science - a few minutes on Google were all that sufficed to run this information down. It is both highly ironic and deeply disturbing that Representative Slaughter would issue a press release about journalistic integrity and honesty that relies upon an open letter from a liberal newspaper that grossly misrepresents its key source. But she apparently is too busy booking face time on CNN to make sure her staff checked the facts behind her allegations.
PING for WNY patriots.
Very good, dirtboy.
On one of the threads linked today about this matter that took us to leftist sites, they said that they've traced Gannon to Texas. LOL
Very good! (Can you add the "media matters" stuff?) The domain names and "photo"?) There is no proofs -- there are rumors and allegations. David Brock (also) needs to be made to wear this one for Slaughter.
Nice work. I would, however, like to know if he holds a degree from a Pennsylvania school of higher education. I can't see that that has been established one way or the other.
This was focused upon Slaughter's press release, and I did not want to roam off topic.
I would too. However, Bunch does not establish that in his blog entry.
You did right.
Boy, that Bunch clown is something else. What a kneepad wearing tool. Oh wait, distinguished, unbiased member of the MSM.
If that paper didn't have a sports section, no one would buy it.
And they can't figure out why Philadelphia is such a pit after 50+ years of democrat rule. Twits.
Yes, that was not a critique, just an aside.
Question about Activism Groups mentioned on Media Matters site.
Also this piece referenced here:
Jeff Gannon's Dramatic Retirement
Well, I hope you people are happy: faux-news reporter and possible White House briefing room plant Jeff Gannon, subject to a long hard hammering by the gay-baiting liberal blog scene, has retired from... whatever it is that he did.
Does Slaughter have a relationship with this gay-baiting liberalblog scene that hammered Gannon??
Slaughter really know how to rake it in from the unions...only in this bizarre area could such a bozo ever get elected so many times.
Wait a second. Hasn't the White House Press Corps included such stalwarts as Sam Donaldson and Helen Thomas? Haw does that fit with the complaint?
The piper has two left feet. =)
Nice job DB.
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