NYT says Tom Cotton editorial ‘did not meet our standards’
The New York Times said on Thursday the controversial op-ed written by Republican Sen. Tom Cotton (Ark.) “did not meet our standards.”
The Times published the column, titled “Tom Cotton: Send In the Troops” on Wednesday, where he argued that the president should invoke the Insurrection Act to quell protests that have sparked up across the country in light of the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died in Minneapolis police custody last week.
“We’ve examined the piece and the process leading up to its publication,” a Times spokesperson told The Hill in a statement. “This review made clear that a rushed editorial process led to the publication of an Op-Ed that did not meet our standards.
“As a result, we’re planning to examine both short term and long term changes, to include expanding our fact checking operation and reducing the number of Op-Eds we publish.”
In the opinion piece, Cotton called for “an overwhelming show of force to disperse, detain and ultimately deter lawbreakers.”
The op-ed included factual errors that the Times has reported on, such as the claim that antifa, which is not a formal organization, is “infiltrating protest marches to exploit Floyd’s death for their own anarchic purposes.”
The backlash was swift, and much of it came from within the Times itself.
Numerous staffers argued that publishing such sentiments endangered the lives of black journalists at the newspaper, writing: “Running this puts Black @NYTimes staff in danger.”
Other writers and journalists wrote they were temporarily going to stop producing content for the Times and unsubscribe from the newspaper.
Earlier Thursday, Cotton praised the Times in an interview on Fox News for publishing his opinion piece and standing up “to the woke progressive mob in their own newsroom.”
“We obviously don’t agree on very much,” Cotton said of the Times. “But, in this case, they ran my opinion piece with which they disagreed. And, they’ve stood up to the woke progressive mob in their own newsroom. So, I commend them for that.”