Both the New York Times and CNN have deliberately misled readers about two sexual harassment-related formal rebukes issued by the House Ethics Committee on Friday. In the case of the Times, they hid the fact that the rebukes addressed one Republican and one Democrat (guess which part they hid), and in the case of CNN, attempted to smear the Republican as being charged with sexual harassment himself (he wasn’t.)
Alyssa Farah, press secretary to Vice President Mike Pence, caught it, and said so on her personal Twitter account.
THIS IS CNN
Staring with CNN, which committed an arguably lesser offense, here are screenshots of the tweet and the article.
WHAT’S THE PROBLEM?
This obviously implies to sexual harassment offenses committed by two men. That is not, however, the case. This is from the second paragraph of the article (which placement is why it’s arguably a lesser offense):
Republican Rep. Mark Meadows of North Carolina was cited for “failure to take prompt and decisive action to deal with the alleged sexual harassment in his congressional office” and Democratic Rep. Ruben Kihuen of Nevada for making “persistent and unwanted advances towards women who were required to interact with him as part of their professional responsibilities.”
Republican Meadows was reprimanded for failing to take prompt and decisive action over someone else’s offense; Democrat Kihuen for making advances and committed offenses himself. And although we here are aware of the circumstance, even that explantory paragraph is less than clear. Although it says “failure to take prompt and decisive action” it does not actually spell out that it wasn’t his behavior that required action.
She certainly did: