by WorldTribune Staff, April 15, 2019
The judges who award Pulitzer Prizes lauded The New York Times and Washington Post for “deeply sourced” reporting on the Russia collusion story. The Times and Post were ultimately awarded the 2018 Pulitzer for a story they got wrong.
So, will the same judges award the Pulitzer to the outlets which got it right?
Don’t count on it.
“Of the 18 members on the Pulitzer Prize Board, sometimes dubbed ‘the deciders,’ there are no notable conservatives, but several famous liberals and Trump critics,” Washington Examiner columnist Paul Bedard noted on April 15.
The Media Research Center found nobody on the Pulitzer board of judges from the center-right.
“If this isn’t the ultimate evidence of the left – and far left – dominance of the so-called ‘news media,’ what is?” asked L. Brent Bozell, president of the center.
“Eighteen judges and not one – let this sink in – not one anywhere close to a conservative. The Pulitzer Prizes have always been liberal, but this is now not just leftist, it is a mockery of itself,” Bozell said.
Free Press Foundation on March 26 said that the “awards should be rescinded or the New York Times and the Washington Post should uphold the highest traditions of the American Free Press and voluntarily surrender them.”
President Donald Trump tweeted last month: “So funny that The New York Times & The Washington Post got a Pulitzer Prize for their coverage (100% NEGATIVE and FAKE!) of Collusion with Russia – And there was No Collusion! So, they were either duped or corrupt? In any event, their prizes should be taken away by the Committee!”
Related: Press foundation: Pulitzer prizes awarded jointly to NY Times, Washington Post should be returned, March 26, 2019
The Pulitzer website features a link to a New Yorker piece written by Board member Steve Coll – Columbia University’s journalism school dean, and a former Post managing editor – defending the two papers’ work on the Trump-Russia angle. “President Trump, for all his demagoguery, has yet to marginalize professional reporting,” Coll wrote. “In many newsrooms, investigative journalism is enjoying a renaissance, and is having a strong impact, within and beyond Washington.”
For 2019, the Poynter Institute for Media Studies predicted that not all, but some, of the Pulitzer winners would be for reporting about Trump.
Poynter pointed to two finalists for the 2019 Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting. One is “Zero Tolerance,” a ProPublica exploration of life inside a border patrol detention center. The other: Wall Street Journal stories on hush-money payments made during the 2016 campaign said by the Journal to have been personally orchestrated by then-candidate Trump.[Earlier today, the Wall Street Journal reported that its series on the hush-money payments had won a Pulitzer Prize.]
Another possible Pulitzer contender, Poynter said, is the reporting of David Barstow, Susanne Craig and Russ Buettner of The New York Times on Trump’s financial history. That series detailed “dubious tax schemes,” as the paper described them. The series won Long Island University’s George Polk Award for political reporting.
The George Polk Award for justice reporting went to Julie K. Brown of the Miami Herald for “Perversion of Justice,” her series on hedge fund manager Jeffrey Epstein and the generous plea deal he received after being charged with sexually abusing underage girls and luring them into prostitution. (The story had a Trump connection; it implicated Alexander Acosta, then a federal prosecutor, in negotiating a soft penalty. Acosta now is the president’s Secretary of Labor.)
Previous stories about the direct connections between Epstein and former President Bill Clinton have been downplayed by the major corporate media.
Related: Report: Bill Clinton still mum on 26 flights aboard ‘Lolita Express’, Nov. 20, 2017