Politico, as I have mentioned, has brought up a non-story about Herman Cain and allegations of sexual harassment, so Cain can run through the media gauntlet. They have done this before.
Last year, I wrote about the punk, Jonathan Martin when he laid this accusatory and defamatory, and might I add, untrue in many parts, hit-piece on Sarah Palin. Martin could have easily checked with Sean Hannity, Mark Levin or Glenn Beck on whether the hearsay in his report was true, but instead, published it as the truth. He was soundly embarrassed by Levin and Hannity that day, and Beck, who had the former Governor of Alaska on his radio show the next day.
The date was October 21, 2010, and the hit-piece was named several times throughout the day, beginning with “Hurricane Sarah,” and is now called, “Sarah Palin is Wreaking Havoc On Campaign Trail, GOP Sources Say.”
Martin wrote that Palin was causing all sorts of problems for campaigns, and tried to give support to his claim by adding,
“When Alaska’s former governor released her book last fall, she repeatedly sought to move around scheduled media appearances with little notice.
According to a source familiar with the situation, she backed out of planned interviews with conservative talk-show hosts Sean Hannity and Mark Levin the morning she was scheduled to talk to them. And her multiple schedule changes so annoyed Glenn Beck that he finally decided not to have her on his radio or TV show to promote the book.
“These are people who support her,” said a frustrated source who knew about Palin’s treatment of the conservative talkers. “Her whole world is chaos.”
Notice how Martin uses the, “according to sources familiar with the situation” line that he used so heavily in the recent hit piece on Cain. That is baseless hearsay on its face, but that day, Mark Levin demanded a retraction from Martin, saying,
This is a flat out lie. Sarah Palin never backed out of any interview with me. Period. And John Martin, the reporter, never contacted me to ask me directly. I insist on a retraction.
Sean Hannity joined Levin in the demand, and Sarah Palin tweeted,
Johnny, Johnny, Johnny…ya just made big mistake lying about Levin, Beck, Rush…U can lie about me, but taking on the Big Guns? Not smart
The following day, Glenn Beck had Palin on his radio show where they laughed about the outrageous lies in the report and Palin called Martin a “punk.”
So how can we look at this recent Cain piece as anything less than a hit-piece designed to bring down a conservative? How can we figure out what is true about it and what isn’t? Who is lying? The first woman, the second woman, or now, the third woman who, by the way, has the story that sounds the most like sexual harassment, but never actually brought a complaint. Or is John Martin lying?
Martin is now, seemingly, standing up for one of the guys that the Cain campaign suspects leaked the story to Politico.
I do have a bit of insight on this, however, I would be the first to say that I don’t have all the information, but just to help understand how things get leaked to Politico, I’ll share what information I have.
While volunteering for a “competitive House campaign,” last year, I was alerted that Sarah Palin would be coming to the district. On page three of the Politico story about Palin, Martin reported the following:
“Late last Friday afternoon, Palin’s political aide, Andy Davis, contacted officials with a competitive House campaign. The former governor would be available Tuesday, Davis said.
As with Grassley, the reaction of the House campaign was to have Palin do a fundraiser.
“What [the candidate] needs more than anything else is money,” said a GOP source familiar with the situation.
No-go, replied Davis, indicating that not only did she not want to raise money, but she also didn’t want to do a rally. The preference was for something “low-key,” so Davis suggested visiting a factory or going door to door. But in doing so, the candidate would have to limit the exposure of the event. They could bring only one “trusted local reporter” along, Davis said, according to a source familiar with the exchange.
Without much media attention, such a grass-roots event would have done next to nothing for the candidate, said the source close to the situation. But the campaign — a lean operation, like those of most House candidates — scrambled to put together another plan that would accommodate Palin. They sent it to Davis on Saturday.
The campaign didn’t get word until Monday morning, the day before the event was to take place, that Palin’s schedule had changed. She couldn’t come. Palin offered no reason for the no-show.
After the experience, the campaign, filled with conservatives who thought well of Palin, began referring to her as “Princess Sarah,” said the source close to the situation.”
Ok, all of that is what happened in my district, the days, all of it. I guess you could say that I’m corroborating some of Martin’s reporting here. Upon chatting with members of the campaign, I learned of their increasing dislike of Palin because basically, she didn’t want to do a fundraiser, she wanted to go door to door. In fact, I had to work that Tuesday, and my husband said he would follow Governor Palin around with a camera for me.
After finding out that Palin would not be coming to the district, I was told that a consultant, working with the campaign, was working on something with Politico, and that he or she was gathering information for a big piece about her.
So, I waited for Politico to print something, and I found the story very quickly after it came out.
I chatted angrily with the campaign, who tried to say I was only mad Palin wasn’t coming to the district, and that they had nothing to do with the story.
But they had to, because I was kept in the loop of the progression of the possible Palin appearance.
Now, I share that information with the reader for two reasons:
One, because it shows a snapshot of how stories end up on the Politico front page, and two, because it shows how campaigns, even though they are friendly with a candidate, (in this case, possible candidate for President at the time,) can still contribute, purposely or not, to a very tough and unyielding media gauntlet.
Another thing, and I only add this because it is human nature, is, some of these political operatives just really like to make the move that they can brag about to their other political operative friends.
The thing about all of this is that it will never end. There will always be people who will cut you down, shove your face in the mud, and kick you. Herman Cain is an inspirational conservative, and that represents a threat to everyone who wants to be President in 2012, the liberal elite in the Republican Party, and the statist-Marxists in the Democratic Party. So, who did what is hard to figure out for sure.
Right now, Cain’s camp is saying it was the Perry camp. Some found Rahm Emmanuel’s fingerprints, some believe it was Karl Rove, who, by the way knows how all this goes down and basically puts on a show every time he’s on the news, and some believe it’s Romney’s camp.
The point is, it could be all of them, or someone who works without allegiance to any party, which often happens as well.
The bottom line is, we know how it started, and it was with nothing more than a wisp of a suggestion that Herman Cain is some horrible, womanizing, jerk that conservatives better be wary of supporting.
The problem with that storyline, is that we can see Herman Cain, we can hear him, and we have sized him up to be quite honest, intelligent, and filled with common sense, unlike any other candidate out there.
The longer news outlets use trickery and lies and suggestions and back-channels, the more people will just tune them out, and decide for themselves, like they did with Sarah Palin, and that is a great thing.