What was that you were saying about how Democracy Dies in Darkness?
Last week there was a secretive meeting of a liberal donor group known as the Democracy Alliance. It was held in Carlsbad, California. The very high dollar, hush-hush affair was attended by various luminaries of the Democratic Party and progressive activists including George Soros, Nancy Pelosi and Senator Amy Klobuchar. Attendees were supposed to keep the identities of those present secret and not leave any “sensitive material” behind where the press could get hold of it. But one “special guest” who appeared as a panelist caught the attention of the Free Beacon. That was Washington Post reporter Janell Ross.
Washington Post reporter Janell Ross gave a presentation at a secretive California gathering where Democratic politicians, liberal activists, and their biggest donors plotted the future of the progressive movement without notifying her superiors that she would be attending, according to a Post spokesman.
The Democracy Alliance went to great lengths to keep the identities of its members and guests confidential at its fall investment conference last week at the La Costa Resort, but the Washington Free Beacon obtained a detailed conference agenda that lists both events and featured guests.
Among them was Ross, a national reporter who closely covered the 2016 presidential campaign for the Washington Post and has since continued to cover the Trump administration.
The Free Beacon has done some great reporting on this so their entire coverage is worth a read, but the obvious issue here is the problematic appearance of Ms. Ross on the conference agenda. Let’s be very clear about what this event was: it was a meeting of some of the highest rolling donors in the Democratic Party where their 2018 strategy to defeat the Republicans was being worked on. Nothing wrong with that, obviously. The GOP does the same thing all the time.
But a reporter for the Washington Post was there, not to cover the event for her paper (the Beacon confirmed that the WaPo wasn’t even aware she was there), but to participate as a panelist. We’ve discussed some of Janell Ross’ reporting here in the past. Yes, it’s always been obvious that there was a pronounced liberal slant in her work, though that’s not really surprising for the Washington Post. But keep in mind that Ross isn’t an editorialist who is paid to opine. She’s a reporter. She’s part of the newsroom.
More to the point, she covers politics and elections. And she’s participating in a Democratic donors’ conference and strategy session? The Washington Post is one of the three biggest newspapers in the country and arguably the biggest name in national political coverage. While their bias toward the left is pretty much a given, when it comes to their coverage of elections aren’t they supposed to at least make an effort to try to fool us? Don’t they have some sort of obligation to at least pretend that they’re giving voters both sides of the story so they can make up their own minds?
Instead, one of their reporters on the election beat is participating in a planning session to boost the #RESIST movement and elect Democrats. Yes, she claims she was there to talk about a book she’s working on, but that really doesn’t explain how she wound up as a panelist nor why she wouldn’t let her employer know she was going.
The Washington Post told the Free Beacon that Ross had been “reminded” that, “the paper discourages involvement in events that may be perceived as partisan.”
I’m sorry, but… perceived as partisan? Did you look at the agenda and the list of guests? This isn’t a question of perception.