Fox News panelist on new Kavanaugh reporting: “This is so irresponsible on the part of the Times”

Host Howard Kurtz asked his guest, “If this happened, wouldn't she be very, very likely to recall it?”

Video file

Citation From the September 15 edition of Fox News' MediaBuzz

HOWARD KURTZ (HOST): Ben, we haven't read the book, but is it fair for The New York Times to have the reporters, Robin Pogrebin and Kate Kelly, drop this into an analysis piece, a charge of this magnitude against a sitting Supreme Court justice, without the backup that ordinarily is required of a hard news story? 

BEN DOMENECH (THE FEDERALIST): Absolutely not, Howie. And there's a number of things that frankly they leave out, that they ought to have included. Things that are, in some cases, included in the book. In a very quiet way, they just kind of go right past the point that you made in your open, that this accuser, this supposed second accuser, is not someone who actually is making this claim. That this is being claimed by someone removed. They also don't make clear about who Max Stier is, namely that he and Brett Kavanaugh have been on the opposite side doing battle in the past. He's not just some --

KURTZ: Specifically how?

DOMENECH: They've been on the opposite side of the Clinton-Lewinsky battle, where they clearly had an experience of opposition. That's something that should be included in any story of this magnitude.


KURTZ: I obtained the relevant pages from this forthcoming book, which is The Education of Brett Kavanaugh: An Investigation. The woman, the alleged victim here, the woman who supposedly had to touch Kavanaugh's private parts at this long-ago Yale party, she is named, by the way, although according to this telling she's a sexual assault victim. Here's what the book says: "She refused to discuss the incident, though several of her friends say she does not recall it." Now, that was left out of what The New York Times published today. If this happened, wouldn't she be very, very likely to recall it? And how do you leave that out of an account about a Supreme Court justice, Ben? 

DOMENECH: I just think that this is so irresponsible on the part of the Times. And, I mean we kind of skipped past one of the things, which was this was not a good week for The New York Times' social media team, in a lot of different respects. They had to delete and apologize a couple of different tweets. But I think in the context of this story, what you're talking about is essential to be included in it, you can't just, to Susan's point, make this kind of implication, this massive kind of claim without including all the necessary facts that people need to know in order to make a fair assessment of it and to know what they don't know about the claim and what details have been left out.