Something Stinks in Virginia

(AP PHOTO/THE WASHINGTON POST, LINDA DAVIDSON)

(AP PHOTO/THE WASHINGTON POST, LINDA DAVIDSON)

You may have heard that Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe (D) lied to federal investigators probing a fraud scheme. At least that was what the Associated Press reported last week before quickly retracting the story.

Several of those involved in reporting the story were fired by the Associated Press, but it wasn’t clear until now how the false story emerged.

Several journalists, including some at AP, said the McAuliffe story was pushed to news organizations by the campaign of McAuliffe’s rival, Ken Cuccinelli II (R). The Washington Post was among those that received a tip about it from Cuccinelli’s campaign, but The Post passed on the story after checking it.

The Associated Press is ultimately responsible for verifying their stories, but the Cuccinnelli campaign should also be held responsible for disseminating a blatantly false smear.

The good news is polls show McAuliffe leading Cuccinelli by a very wide margin, and voters will soon have an opportunity to hold the Cuccinelli campaign responsible by voting for his opponent.

I never thought I’d see the day Terry McAuliffe would take such a commanding lead in a race, however Virginia Republicans did nominate a guy who ran on a platform of banning blowjobs.

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  • Draxiar

    I hope Ken Cuccinelli II gets hit with a suit on defamation of character.

    • Axomamma

      Cuccinelli didn’t publish it, but AP should definitely have known better. Maybe the AP thought Chuck Todd’s definition of journalism would cover them. It’s a management problem.

  • Robert Scalzi

    RepubliCON mantra – If you’re not cheating , you’re not trying

  • Badgerite

    Ah! Pre-election libel. A not uncommon GOP tactic. Bob Kasten used it during his re-election campaign for the Senate when running against Ed Garvey. Garvey won a post election lawsuit against him. But, of course, that doesn’t affect the outcome of the election so the GOP has been known to do this.

  • drspittle

    I think at least one of the reprorters was fired over this, and now other journalists are up in arms. Supposedly the guy was a good, investigative reporter who worked very hard. I don’t know “the whole story” but part of me thinks he deserved it. Of course I’m sure our ticket punching jet jobs in DC will duly note the importance of verifying and fact checking before reporting a story. Or in Chuck Todd’s case, reading back what some Republican toldl him.

  • muselet

    It’s telling that Ken Cuccinelli defends his sub-Rick Santorum “you’re having sex wrong!” campaign by claiming to be a devout Christian, but he and his staff think nothing of violating the Ninth (or Eighth, depending who’s counting) Commandment when he’s behind in the polls.

    Righties really do think rules are for other people.

    -alopecia