On Wednesday evening, New York Times reporters Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly, co-authors of the hit piece about Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, attended a National Press Club event in Washington, D.C. The president of the club, Alison Kodjak, later tweeted that the women told fellow guests that Kavanaugh had agreed to be interviewed “for their book – If they wrote that they didn’t talk with him.” She wrote that they refused to this condition and “walked away from the interview.”
Brett Kavanaugh agreed to talk to @katekelly and @rpogrebin for their book – If they wrote that they didn’t talk with him. The authors — who told the story tonight @PressClubDC — refused and walked away from the interview.
— Alison Kodjak (@alikodjakNPR) September 19, 2019
Fox News’ reported they had contacted Kavanaugh’s office, but did not receive an immediate response.
Call me skeptical, but I can’t imagine Kavanaugh even entertaining an interview with hostile reporters knowing there was a 100% chance that his words would be twisted to fit their narrative.
Nor do I find it conceivable that Kavanaugh would take the risk of putting himself into the very situation that he now finds himself – the women reporting ‘Kavanaugh told us that if we lied and said he didn’t meet with us, he would meet with us.’
The Huffington Post reported the story with this headline, “NY Times Reporters Say Kavanaugh Asked Them To Lie In Exchange For An Interview.” And this was their lede: “New York Times reporters Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly said that Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh agreed to let them interview him for their upcoming book ― as long as they would publicly lie about it.”
According to the Huffington Post, “Kelly and Pogrebin said they couldn’t agree to the justice’s terms, so they couldn’t conduct the interview.” The article includes tweets from the Washingtonian’s Andrew Beaujon writing that Kavanaugh “wanted a line in there saying he had declined an interview. They were on their way to Washington to interview him.” This implies something even worse, that Kavanaugh had initially agreed to an interview, then once they were on their way, he altered the conditions.
But, in the end, Beaujon implies that Kelly and Pogrebin had too much integrity to agree to those terms. Please.
He wanted a line in there saying he had declined an interview. They were on their way to Washington to interview him. Book was almost done.
— Andrew Beaujon (@abeaujon) September 18, 2019
It sounds too much like the fable of the crocodile who convinces a frog he will transport him safely across a fast moving river and, of course, eats him before they reach the other side. Why? Because it is in the crocodile’s nature.
Pogrebin and Kelly will go on dropping incendiary soundbites to keep the Kavanaugh story alive and to sell books. Because it is in their nature.
Note: I will update this post if Kavanaugh’s office issues a comment.