A Gay Prostitute Inside Bush's Inner Media
Scoop Links: A Jeff Gannon (James D. Guckert)
Compiled By Scoop's Alastair Thompson
In the past few days one of the most bizarre stories in US political media ever emerged via the blogosphere, and has since spilled out into the mainstream.
While on first blush the story appears a wee bit prurient - thanks to the involvement of prostitution and homosexuality themes - the central thesis of the story does involve some serious issues of journalistic ethics.
Jeff Gannon, a reporter from an extremely partisan web based news service operating under a false name, is working in the White House, and is even selected to ask questions of the President himself at his January 26th press conference.
This same reporter is discovered brazenly boasting about his access to classified CIA documents related to outed CIA undercover agent Valerie Plame, the wife of Ambassador Joseph Wilson who publicly exposed the Vice President's knowledge of the fact that the Niger yellow-cake documents used to justify the Iraq war were forgeries.
The following is a series of links to coverage in both the blogosphere and the mainstream media of the Jeff Gannon affair.
Jeff Gannon (James D. Guckert) at a White House press briefing
A wing-nut White House reporter's alter-ego – Jim Guckert
apparently also a gay prostitution website proprietor
Websites also owned by the same person and company that owns JeffGannon.com
A graph comparing Scoop.co.nz's traffic to that of Talon News
A graph comparing Scoop.co.nz's traffic to that of Gopusa.com
The truth will set you free! I point you to the WashPo story from Dec 26, 2003 that says the CIA is upset with me for talking about a document they say is a forgery (when they are not denying that it exists) that details EXACTLY what the Senate Intel Committee says.
Plame got him the job and the White House didn't know they were sending him - otherwise they would have nixed it knowing that Wilson was anti-war.
The sweet taste of vindication.
108 posted on 07/10/2004 10:21:23 AM PDT by Jeff Gannon (Listen to my radio show "Jeff Gannon's Washington" on www.RIGHTALK.com)
Rawstory.com explores the Mclellan /
Reporter with prostitution links and false name got access to Bush; Questions surface on relationship with White House staff
Mainstream Media Coverage Of The Jeff Gannon Debate
Washington Post - Online Reporter Quits
After Liberals' Expose By Howard Kurtz
… Kurtz defends Gannon's right to be a partisan
KURTZ: Now, that question, Wolf, kind of put a target on Jeff Gannon's back. A lot of liberal bloggers began digging into his background. In the last 24 hours, they've exposed his real name. They've raised questions about some sexually provocative Web addresses that he registered on one of his companies, but never actually did anything with.
And Gannon has now resigned from the two Web sites that he was writing for.
BLITZER: Is there any evidence that there's a connection, that the White House put him up to this to throw these kind of questions whether to Scott McClellan or to the president? Any evidence of wrongdoing, first of all, on the part of the White House?
KURTZ: No evidence whatsoever. I talked to Scott McClellan about this today, the White House spokesman. He said, first of all, President Bush didn't know who Jeff Gannon was when he called on him at that news conference.
But McClellan knows who he is. He calls on him at White House briefings from time to time. He says that there are a lot of people in the White House press room who have strong opinions and sometimes put them into their questions and it's not his job as the press secretary to be deciding who can get into the White House and who can't based on their political views.
Gannon, by the way, says, sure, he's very conservative. He makes no bones about that. But he thinks that a lot of the reporters in the White House press room are liberal, and he provides some balance.
BLITZER: What's the name of the organization, the news organization, he reported for. And what political connections did you discover may or may not exist to that news organization?
KURTZ: Well, he writes for a site called Talon News, which appears to be kind of a straight news site. But all of the stories that he writes also appear on a site that's called GOPUSA, which, as you might expect, is a conservative site. In fact, it's motto is: We're bringing the conservative message to America.
And both of those sites are owned by a man named Bobby Eberle, who is a Texas Republican activist in the state of Texas. So the issue here isn't really Jeff Gannon's ideology. He's the first to tell you that he comes at journalism from a conservative perspective. The issue I think is, should some of his liberal critics, these liberal bloggers, have started investigating his personal life in an effort to discredit him?
It's fine to disagree with his politics, but did they go too far, I think a lot of people are asking, in dragging in some of this personal stuff?
BLITZER: I used to be a White House correspondent for many years, sat through numerous briefings. There are plenty of journalists that wear their politics on their sleeve, liberals, conservatives. What's wrong with journalists having these kind of views, being advocacy journalists, if you will?
KURTZ: I personally don't think there's anything wrong with it, as long as they make clear what their views are, as Jeff Gannon clearly did.
A lot of people are questioning, well, why does this guy have White House press credentials? Because he doesn't write for a newspaper or magazine. Everything he writes is simply online. But in the age of blogging, that's hardly unusual. And he doesn't have a permanent -- what's called a hard pass. He just gets cleared into the White House on a day-to-day basis, which is a privilege that is pretty much open to any journalist.
So I think it's absolutely fair game to critique his stories, to argue with what he writes, to question his views. And he does that to other members of the press as well. But what precipitated his resignation is that he says that on behalf -- out of concern for his family -- and he told me last week that he had been threatened, that he had been stalked -- this has gotten so personal that he felt he needed to step down as the White House correspondent for Talon News.
BLITZER: And it does come within the context of some of the other embarrassments, Armstrong Williams and some other issues, which we won't get into right now.
But Howard Kurtz doing some digging, doing some reporting for us -- thanks very much, Howard Kurtz.
KURTZ: Thank you.
With lots of links and resources including this gem:
Gannon's Greatest Hits
Some of Gannon's greatest hits, as featured in a video montage on Olberman's show last night:
May 10, 2004: "Q In your denunciations of the Abu Ghraib photos, you've used words like 'sickening,' 'disgusting' and 'reprehensible.' Will you have any adjectives left to adequately describe the pictures from Saddam's rape rooms and torture chambers? And will Americans ever see those images?
"MR. McCLELLAN: I'm glad you brought that up, Jeff, because the President talks about that often."
July 15, 2004: "Q Last Friday, the Senate Intelligence Committee released a report that shows that Ambassador Joe Wilson lied when he said his wife didn't put him up for the mission to Niger. The British inquiry into their own prewar intelligence yesterday concluded that the President's 16 words were 'well-founded.' Doesn't Joe Wilson owe the President and America an apology for his deception and his own intelligence failure?"
April 1, 2004: "Q I'd like to comment on the angry mob that surrounded Karl Rove's house on Sunday. They chanted and pounded on the windows until the D.C. police and Secret Service were called in. The protest was organized by the National People's Action Coalition, whose members receive taxpayer funds, as well as financial support from groups including Theresa Heinz Kerry's Tides Foundation.
"MR. McCLELLAN: I would just say that, one, we appreciate and understand concerns that people may have. I would certainly hope that people would respect the families of White House staff."
Feb. 10, 2004: "Q Since there have been so many questions about what the President was doing over 30 years ago, what is it that he did after his honorable discharge from the National Guard? Did he make speeches alongside Jane Fonda, denouncing America's racist war in Vietnam? Did he testify before Congress that American troops committed war crimes in Vietnam? And did he throw somebody else's medals at the White House to protest a war America was still fighting?"