Daily Beast runs interference for David Koch?

Blog ››› ››› ERIC BOEHLERT

It sure seemed that way when I first read this piece over the weekend, in which right-wing billionaire David Koch, still fuming over Jane Mayer's recent expose in The New Yorker about he and his billionaire brother are helping to fund the Tea Party movement and the larger anti-Obama insurgency, whined to the Daily Beast that Meyer's article was "hateful," ludicrous," and "plain wrong."

The sympathetic Daily Beast dispatch, written by Elaine Lafferty, did very little though, to catalog anything that was actually wrong, or inaccurate, with The New Yorker article, nor did Koch himself produce much evidence.

For instance, Koch seemed peeved that Meyer suggested the Koch brothers had been helping to bankroll the "grassroots" Tea Party movement. But note this passage [emphasis added]:

[H]e says, no one from the Tea Party movement has ever approached him for money, and when I ask him straight up if he's funding the Tea Party, all he says is, "Oh, please."

A classic non-denial denial.

Koch's whining rang a bit hollow considering that while Meyer was writing her lengthy piece, Koch repeatedly declined her interview requests. (Wonder what he was hiding.) Also, while Daily Beast allowed Koch to tee-off on Meyer's work, it provided no space for The New Yorker writer to defend her reporting.

The good news is that Daily Beast finally conceded there were problems with its Koch article, including the fact that the site failed to disclose that author Lafferty once worked as a consultant for the McCain/Palin campaign, and editors there attached a note to the end of the piece.

The bad news though, was that the article was up all weekend without any reference to the obvious flaws.

The New Yorker
Daily Beast
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