The New York Times, The Washington Post and Fox News have made exclusive agreements with a conservative author for early access to his opposition research on Hillary Clinton. It is a move that has confused members of the Clinton campaign and some reporters, states the On Media Blog, according to Politico.
“Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich” will debut on May 5th. The NYT, the Post, and Fox have already made arrangements with the author, Peter Schweizer, to pursue some of the material included in his book.
The book tries to draw connections between Clinton Foundation donations and speaking fees and Hillary Clinton’s actions as Secretary of State. Schweizer is the president of the Government Accountability Institute, a conservative research group.
Fox News’ use of Schweizer’s book has surprised no one. The bulk of the network’s programming is conservative, and the book’s publisher, HarperCollins, is owned by News Corporation, which also owns Fox.
However, the New York Times and the Post’s decision to partner with a partisan researcher has raised a few eyebrows, as well as the early timing. The New York Times and Washington Post are considered “middle-of-the-road” or “left-leaning.”
Is it collusion of Big Media? Is it an act of betrayal by left-wing publications?
Some NYT reporters view the agreement as unusual, sources there said. Still others defended the agreement, noting that it was no different from using a campaign’s opposition research to inform one’s reporting, so long as it is fact-checked.
In a Monday article about the book, the NYT said that “major news organizations including The New York Times, The Washington Post and Fox News have exclusive agreements with the author to pursue the story lines found in the book.”
Both the New York Times and the Post initially did not respond to requests from Politico for comment on Monday.
However, at 2 p.m. – hours after the initial publication of this item – spokespeople from both newspapers sent statements in which editors defended the decisions to work with Schweizer.