How a Political Operative Sneaks In Under the NYTimes Radar
Reader Anne asked about the campaign that has "border wall" supporters sending bricks to Congress. Seems the NYTimes has an article about the "Virginia girl" who started the campaign all by her lonesome and its blossomed to a grassroots miracle.
Well, sort of.
She’s later described as "Ms. Heffron, who has been active in political campaigns and public affairs…" Well, that clears that up! Of course, Michael Moore has been active in political campaigns and public affairs –the same could be said of David Duke, Jane Fonda, and Jerry Falwell, so that doesn’t really narrow it down.
The truth is out there about Kirsten Heffron, and it’s not far out there at all. In fact, when it comes to investigative reporting, we’re not talking "All the President’s Men" here — it took this intrepid reporter literally five minutes of Googling to learn the following about the spokeswoman for the Send-a-Brick Project.
— In the heat of the 2004 presidential campaign, writing as "Kirsten Andersen Heffron" on the JerseyGOP.com Web site, she penned a hate-filled attack on John Kerry — "’Thank You, John Kerry,’ A Dear John Letter" — that goes way lower than the notorious Swift Boat Veterans for the Truth, calling the former Vietnam Vet "a treasonous scumbag." Her letter suggests — without any supporting evidence — that Kerry forged documents and raises "the questionable circumstances surrounding your three Purple Hearts."
— On the Send-a-Brick Project Web site, Heffron boast of working for conservative GOP presidential candidate Steve Forbes (would that have been hard for the Times to squeeze in the article — it’s only 11 letters!) but adds that she served as "Public Affairs Director for a 2-million-member national grassroots advocacy group."
For some reason, she won’t tell you what it is, so we will: It was the anti-union National Right-to-Work Committee. We guess that if it came out that Heffron worked against both unions and illegal immigrants, people might get the idea that maybe she just doesn’t like working people….
There is a lot more. Will Bunch at Attytood has the scoop — and thank goodness someone remembers how to do that lost art I like to call "journalism." You know research. Reporting. The whole story, not just the one that paints a purty picture for your readers.
As for why the NYTimes picked up the story in the first place? I’m guessing Kirsten’s contacts that she made while working for Steve Forbes presidential bid were useful. Carl Hulse of the NYTimes meet a Republican PR flack — next time, try digging a bit below the surface. Someone explain that whole liberal media bias thing to me again…