New York Times Executive Editor Dean Baquet on Thursday scolded one of his reporters for being caught criticizing colleagues covering the Jan. 6, 2021, attack at the Capitol, and encouraged staff members to remain vigilant against people seeking to hurt them, Politico reported.
Baquet spoke at a lunch in the newspaper's Washington bureau, where he was pressed by reporters to address recent comments by national security reporter Matthew Rosenberg, two people present told Politico.
Rosenberg secretly was recorded by Project Veritas slamming colleagues and members of the left for overreacting to the Jan. 6 attack.
The two videos immediately caused tensions to rise among Times staffers, Politico reported.
Politico reported that multiple Times reporters told Baquet that they were upset about Rosenberg blasting their own coverage and ripping his co-workers.
Saying Rosenberg was careless and stupid in making the remarks, Baquet said Project Veritas was trying to "make our heads explode" and divide the Times, Politico said.
He warned staffers not to play into the group's hands.
In the videos, Rosenberg appeared to suggest that the media was overhyping the Capitol attack. He ridiculed fellow reporters for saying they were traumatized on Jan. 6, and criticized left-leaning younger Times reporters for being influenced by a "woke" culture.
Some Times reporters told Politico that Rosenberg needs to be punished for his actions. However, staffers also were concerned about fueling Project Veritas' work, which they see as an attempt at intimidation.
In 2017, Baquet lambasted "despicable" Project Veritas for trapping a junior-level employee into saying "things he shouldn’t have said."
"The greater sin wasn't his, it was theirs," Baquet said at the time. "They're sin was a sin of lying and subterfuge. They're just awful."
Project Veritas has used hidden cameras and/or false identities in an attempt to trick media members into or saying embarrassing things. The group also has released videos that later were found to have been edited — something that has influenced some Times staffers to give Rosenberg the benefit of the doubt, Politico reported.
While Newsmax does not sanction the use of undercover videos, the Times and Politico coverage of the video and their response demands attention.
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