Pavlich: Where is the media's explanation for Avenatti?

Infamous attorney Michael Avenatti, who is on the brink of being disbarred, is in federal court this week facing a number of serious charges ranging from theft, tax fraud, extortion and more.

Avenatti became famous after the 2018 announcement he was representing porn star Stormy Daniels in a lawsuit against President TrumpDonald John TrumpCould Donald Trump and Boris Johnson be this generation's Reagan-Thatcher? Merkel backs Democratic congresswomen over Trump How China's currency manipulation cheats America on trade MORE. She alleged an affair with Trump back in 2006 and a cover-up through a hush money payment. The media immediately salivated at the idea Avenatti could be the man to finally take down Trump and greatly increased his public profile.

This week he’s facing charges he stole $300,000 from Daniels, which he denies. He’s also accused of attempting to extort millions of dollars from Nike and allegedly embezzling millions more from a paraplegic client. The list goes on.

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Despite book deals and major media oxygen, when the Daniels allegations failed to have an impact on the White House, Avenatti looked for another angle. His opportunity came with the nomination of Brett KavanaughBrett Michael KavanaughLindsey Graham's Faustian bargain Liberal, conservative Supreme Court justices unite in praising Stevens The Hill's Morning Report - A raucous debate on race ends with Trump admonishment MORE to the Supreme Court.

Representing a woman named Julie Swetnick, Avenatti accused Kavanaugh of gang rape. There was no evidence provided, only vague stories and Swetnick’s version quickly fell apart under basic questioning.

Regardless, the accusation was printed as fact in major newspapers and repeated by cynical lawmakers during interviews on cable news. When the confirmation hearings were finally over, with Kavanaugh properly seated on the Supreme Court, a 400-page Senate Judiciary Committee report found that Avenatti and Swetnick criminally conspired to take Kavanaugh down with lies.

“The evidence appears to support the position that Julie Swetnick and Mr. Avenatti criminally conspired to make materially false statements to the Committee and obstruct the Committee’s investigation. Accordingly, the Committee referred both to the Department of Justice and FBI for investigation,” the report states. “The Committee made a second criminal referral against Michael Avenatti to the Justice Department and FBI for investigation of potential violations of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1001 (knowingly providing materially false statements) and 1505 (obstruction of a congressional investigation), based upon the NBC story that evidenced that Mr. Avenatti may have fabricated allegations by a second declarant.”

While all of this was going on, Avenatti was in the process of getting booted out of his law office for failing to pay rent. Red flags about his behavior were everywhere and yet, because he was saying the right things about President Trump and helping to derail a Supreme Court nomination, the promotion of Avenatti continued.

Vanity Fair ran a profile piece about his fashion choices, in addition to his hair and skin care routine.

“Let it be known that Michael J. Avenatti does not work with a stylist. The telegenic, fashion-forward lawyer representing adult-film actress Stormy Daniels (Stephanie Clifford), in her contract dispute with the president of the United States, has nevertheless turned quite a few heads over the past two months,” the magazine published online. “In that period he has appeared on cable news more than 100 times, sporting a dazzling array of Tom Ford suits — he owns approximately 20 of them, a mix of made-to-measure and off the rack — and wide-striped Brioni ties with a thick Windsor knot.”

He was praised by “The View” host Ana NavarroAna Violeta NavarroIs Biden the Democratic front-runner by default? Ana Navarro: Biden's lack of energy is giving me 'Jeb Bush acid reflux' Pavlich: Where is the media's explanation for Avenatti? MORE as “like the Holy Spirit.” Co-host Joy BeharJosephine (Joy) Victoria BeharJoy Behar on Trump: 'Why can't he be brought up on charges of hate speech?' The Hill's Morning Report - 2020 jitters hit both parties in the Senate Meghan McCain: 'Big difference between the Hanoi Hilton' and border facilities MORE said he was “saving the country.” He was repeatedly urged to run for the White House in 2020.

“Looking ahead to 2020, one of the reasons why I’m taking you seriously as a contender is because of your presence on cable news,” CNN’s media critic Brian Stelter said on his show “Reliable Sources.”

Fox News, a favorite target of the leftist media, was heavily criticized for scrutinizing Avenatti instead of jumping on the bandwagon to support his claims. 

Now that he faces 400 years in federal prison for a series of crimes, reflection from those who promoted the fraudster is warranted. Unsurprisingly, his hundreds of appearances are still being justified. 

“There are lots and lots of reasons why Avenatti was newsworthy when he was representing Stormy Daniels. Journalists did their jobs and questioned him — some more effectively than others,” Stelter wrote in his newsletter, comparing Avenatti to President Trump and accusing others of “distorting” his comments about the lawyer.

“Some folks have been distorting my comment last September about Avenatti. My thesis back then, which still holds, is that all future U.S. presidents will be television stars of some sort. TV star power will be a prerequisite for the presidency. [That’s why] I told Avenatti ‘one reason I’m taking you seriously as a contender is because of your presence on cable news,’ ” he continued. “Obviously I’m not taking him seriously anymore, but I own that comment. He showed a Trump-like mastery of the media last year.”

Newsrooms built Avenatti and yet, they’ve been interestingly silent — probably out of embarrassment —  about the latest developments.

There is a heap of evidence to show Michael Avenatti is a liar and yet he was treated as the ultimate arbitrator of truth. How embarrassing.

Pavlich is the editor for Townhall.com and a Fox News contributor.