What started out as a cynical and ugly effort by the New York Times to drag the name of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh through the mud…again…and to help the Democrats delegitimize the Supreme Court has blown up in their face.

Two New York Times reporters, Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly, who also have a new book coming out on the Kavanaugh hearings, had an story based on that book appear in the New York Times “Sunday Review” that purported to reveal a new instance of alleged inappropriate conduct by Kavanaugh at Yale. The only problem was that in the book, the authors say that the alleged victim says she doesn’t remember it happening. Pogrebin and Kelly threw their editors under the bus during a cable television appearance saying they had included that fact in their draft of the story. By yesterday, they were reduced to blaming FoxNews.

Read all of our Kavanugh coveage.

Since the day of the first article, President Trump has been in the forefront of the effort to stuff this story deep up the backside of the New York Times.

Now the left is claiming that President Trump is [show my shocked face] milking the entire episode: Trump milks the Kavanaugh backlash.

For Team Trump, the ongoing focus on Kavanaugh is a political gift. The president and his aides are latching on to the uproar to energize conservatives about another hot-button emotional issue that resonates with the base, a move that can support GOP fundraising and ultimately bolster get-out-the-vote efforts.

“Grabbing guns and smearing Supreme Court Justices? Next the Democrats will hold up a dismembered eight-month-old fetus!” said Kellyanne Conway, counselor to the president. “They are handing the election to President Trump.”

The Kavanaugh allegations continue to carry such weight because they will set the tone for the next Supreme Court vacancy and nomination process regardless of the president in office.

“This is a warning to anyone who will put their names out there for Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat when it becomes vacant. This is all about Ginsburg,” said one conservative activist. “This is not going away. This ripped the scab off of what happened last summer and that is why people are so upset.”

A senior administration official rebutted this idea, however. “The White House is not concerned that the shameful episode involving The New York Times will impact the quality of future federal court appointees at any level.”

I think that any relatively sane conservative who is nominated to the Supreme Court would anticipate a vicious and unhinged campaign of character assassination that, like the attacks on Kavanaugh, are totally unmoored from reality. They have to know stuff is just going to be made up out of whole cloth and the salaciousness of the allegations used to demand further investigation. What this incident is signaling, in addition to how the nominee will be attacked, is that the President and his administration will fight back on behalf of their nominee. That will go a long way towards attracting an nominee who will be an actual conservative and not a stealth candidate like David Souter or Anthony Kennedy who made it to the Supreme Court because they really didn’t seem to believe in anything…until they showed they were actually fairly liberal.

The Times came under intense scrutiny for its Kavanaugh story, which ran as an excerpt in the book review section, because it left out a crucial detail that the woman who was allegedly harassed by Kavanaugh at a drunken Yale party has told friends she does not remember the incident, and she declined to be interviewed by Times reporters.

The newspaper also put out an insensitive tweet, since deleted, promoting the Sunday story. Both liberal and conservative activists criticized it because they said it trivialized sexual assault, misconduct and victims with its breezy tone.

I think this is another key data point in what will eventually be seen as a massive “own goal” by the New York Times. What they did wasn’t even supported by their sisters-in-arms in the liberal media. In fact, what the New York Times managed to do was shock the vestigial bit of conscience that remained in the world of professional journalism by actually lying about the facts of the story. This will not be forgotten. Between Avenatti, and Blasey Ford, and now the New York Times future allegations will face a bit of a higher bar before being accepted.

Conservatives have been in overdrive trying to elevate boogeymen out of the Times’ Kavanaugh piece. They’ve used the publication’s snafus as an opportunity to bash and try to weaken the integrity of the institution, which has published a raft of critical coverage of the Trump administration.

Very true. The New York Times and other media have completely torched their credibility with their cheap and nasty hits on an honorable man. The nation realizes what went on and they will be looking for it again in the future. It will be much easier for those of us defending President Trump’s next nomination to point back to this disgraceful incident and show how it is actually a template of behavior and not merely an unfortunate accident.

So, yes, we are milking it. And we’re milking it for all the reasons stated in the article. But you know what, if there is no lactating cow, you really can’t milk anything.

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