By: Terresa Monroe-Hamilton
Things are not going well over at Breitbart these days. It all started at a Trump rally where Michelle Fields, a Breitbart reporter, tried to interview Donald Trump. Suddenly, Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski grabbed her arm forcefully and yanked her away from Trump. Minutes later, bruises would form on her arm.
Here is the exchange between Michelle Fields and Washington Post reporter Ben Terris:
Fields: “Mr. Trump, you went after the late Scalia for affirmative action, do you — are you still against affirmative action?”
Voice (allegedly Corey Lewandowski): “Excuse me, thank you.”
A few moments later (noise of the room can be heard)…
Terris: “You OK?”
Fields: “Holy sh*t.”
Terris: “Yea he just threw you.”
Fields: “I can’t believe he just did that that was so hard. Was that Corey?”
Terris: “Yeah, like, what threat were you?”
Fields: “That was insane. You should have felt how hard he grabbed me. That’s insane. I’ve never had anyone do that to me from a campaign.”
Terris: “Can I put that in my story?”
Fields: “Yeah, go for it — that was really awful. That’s so unprofessional.”
Terris: “He really just almost threw you on the ground.”
Fields: “He literally went like this and was grabbing me down. “I don’t even want to do what he just did to me. Oh my God, that really spooked me that someone would do that.”
Terris: “What threat were you?”
Fields: “Nothing. I was asking about affirmative action.”
Terris: “And he probably knows you, right?”
Fields: “Yeah, I don’t understand. That looks horrible. You’re going after a Breitbart reporter, the people who are nicest to you?”
Terris: “I know, I’m going to put it in my story.”
Fields felt this was a minor event and would have settled for an apology. She has since had to file charges because Trump followers are calling her a liar and are smearing her name everywhere. Wouldn’t you do the same? I have watched the videos and read the accounts and it seems to me there is more than enough evidence this happened just the way she said it did. Lewandowski at first admitted that it happened, then turned around and claimed it didn’t, while calling Fields a liar. Donald Trump has also called Fields a liar. But the most shameful behavior in all this lies with her employer, Breitbart.
Breitbart did not stand by Fields. In fact, they have thrown her under the bus for Trump. In light of that development, Michelle Feilds and Editor-at-Large Ben Shapiro have both now resigned.
Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields and editor-at-large Ben Shapiro are resigning from the company over the site’s handling of Donald Trump’s campaign manager’s alleged assault on Fields, BuzzFeed News has learned.
Fields and Shapiro informed Breitbart News chair Steve Bannon of their decision Sunday night.
“Today I informed the management at Breitbart News of my immediate resignation,” Fields said in a statement sent to BuzzFeed News. “I do not believe Breitbart News has adequately stood by me during the events of the past week and because of that I believe it is now best for us to part ways.”
In his own statement, Shapiro said the episode was emblematic of how he believes the site’s management had sold out the legacy of its founder and namesake, the late Andrew Breitbart.
“Andrew’s life mission has been betrayed,” Shapiro wrote. “Indeed, Breitbart News, under the chairmanship of Steve Bannon, has put a stake through the heart of Andrew’s legacy. In my opinion, Steve Bannon is a bully, and has sold out Andrew’s mission in order to back another bully, Donald Trump; he has shaped the company into Trump’s personal Pravda, to the extent that he abandoned and undercut his own reporter, Breitbart News’ Michelle Fields, in order to protect Trump’s bully campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, who allegedly assaulted Michelle.”
Instead of standing up for their own reporter, Breitbart proved just how in the tank they are for Trump. They even tried to spin it that GrabGate would result in more access to Trump for them. Then they published a story smearing Fields and sided with the Trump campaign. Joel Pollak, a senior editor-at-large at the organization, then proceeded to order staffers to stop defending Fields on social media and in other outlets. It is rumored that some of these staffers who publicly defended Fields were threatened with being fired. You can see the leaked Twitter battle here.
“Please do not retweet or respond,” Breitbart’s Senior Editor-at-Large Joel Pollak responded to the Fields tweet. This resulted in a number of writers asking why they shouldn’t stand up for their fellow reproter. “I get why we shouldn’t engage the [Trump] folks but supporting our sister in arms seems a no-brainer,” Frances Martel, the site’s national security editor, responded. Brandon Darby, Breitbart Texas managing editor, was more forceful in voicing his disagreement with Pollack. “We should stand with our reporter. Wtf,” he wrote. He later added, “Inexcusable. Stand with our reporters— non-negotiable. She didn’t deserve this and she damn sure didn’t deserve to get smeared.”
When Pollack claimed that they were “standing with our reporter,” Darby shot back, “Respectfully, I don’t feel like we are and I feel ashamed of this.” Later in the discussion, another writer posted a tweet from Trump’s campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, smearing Fields as an attention seeker. Pollak argued the statement needed no response because Lewandowski was “hanging himself.” Several staffers did not see it that way. Nolte called the tweet a “declaration of war” and reporter Alex Swoyer stated, “It’s time to man up and stand together.”
“Both Lewandowski and Trump maligned Michelle in the most repulsive fashion,” Shapiro wrote in his resignation statement. “Meanwhile, Breitbart News not only stood by and did nothing outside of tepidly asking for an apology, they then attempted to abandon Michelle by silencing staff from tweeting or talking about the issue. Finally, in the ultimate indignity, they undermined Michelle completely by running a poorly-evidenced conspiracy theory as their lead story in which Michelle and Terris had somehow misidentified Lewandowski.”
LOS ANGELES — Former Breitbart News editor-at-large Ben Shapiro announced Sunday evening via left-wing Buzzfeed that he is abandoning Andrew Breitbart’s lifelong best friend, widow, hand-picked management team and friends in pursuit of an elusive contributorship at the Fox News Channel.
Friends of Hamas could not be found for comment.
Shapiro, a Harvard lawyer and member of the State Bar of California, apparently violated virtually every clause in his employment contract during an appearance on The Kelly File last Thursday evening.
It was business as usual for the ambitious conservative gadfly, who is known to live on the edge, courting and then leaving a series of companies over the past several years.
Buzzfeed, a site that has been aiming to destroy Breitbart News since the moment Andrew Breitbart died, and which has predicted the demise of Breitbart.com for the past four years, rewarded Shapiro for his bravery by placing news of his resignation just beneath several other hot stories, including “This Wee Little Snake Taking Its First Breath Will Cure Anyone’s Fears,” and “2/26: How Two Llamas And A Dress Gave Us The Internet’s Greatest Day.”
The story ran next to a photograph of a baby snake hatching from its shell, apparently for emphasis. Somehow, Shapiro’s name was omitted from the headline on Buzzfeed’s home page.
Ben never had a deal with Fox News or anyone else. He has principles and character and had to follow his conscience on this one. According to Ben, his father was hired under the pseudonym to protect his safety since he had received so many death threats for his writings. “Breitbart put this under his byline because they knew I’d have to out him,” Shapiro said in an interview on Monday, adding that by linking to his profile with the California State Bar the site exposed personal information, though that information is outdated. “The fact they would use my father’s pseudonym in order to attack me just exposes how despicable they are.”
In a statement, Breitbart News Editor-at-Large and In-House Counsel Joel B. Pollak said the article was written in jest. “The article was written by me as part of an effort to make light of a significant company event, and was published as a result of a misunderstanding without going through the normal editorial channels,” Pollak said. “I apologize to Michelle Fields, my friend Ben Shapiro, and to everyone concerned.” Apology not accepted I hope. What a horrible way to behave and I highly doubt that Ben Shapiro is his friend anymore.
The first to resign after the incident was Kurt Bardella, Breitbart’s spokesman. There is talk that more will resign today and others would resign, but are bound by their contracts. Resumes are beginning to float out there, so if you are looking for good writers, now’s your chance.
Things have been uneasy at Breitbart for some time. Many are not happy with the direction the outlet has taken since Andrew Breitbart passed away. Word has it that some of the editors there went to CEO Larry Solov and told him they would quit if he did not bag Bannon. There has been no word on that demand, which does not portend well for those that made it.
Yesterday, two more staffers resigned… Jordan Schachtel and Associate Editor Jarrett Stepman.
From Chicks On The Right:
We resigned today at noon. Below:
From Jordan Schachtel, National Security Correspondent:
The company no longer resembles the ideal that inspired me to start writing for them three years ago. Some of us have been fighting behind the scenes against the party-line Trump propaganda for some time, but without any success, unfortunately.
Breitbart News is no longer a journalistic enterprise, but instead, in my opinion, something resembling an unaffiliated media Super PAC for the Trump campaign. I signed my contract to work as a journalist, not as a member of the Donald J. Trump for President media network. As recent events have proven, there is no longer a point in trying to reform the company from within, so I must step aside with my dignity intact. I wish everyone at Breitbart the best and hope the site can redeem the legacy of its founder under much-needed new management
From Jarrett Stepman, editor
Breitbart News has always been open about being a grassroots, conservative publication, but in my opinion we are working with or perhaps even taking direction from a presidential campaign, which is unacceptable journalistic behavior. I believe Breitbart News is becoming less of a news site and more of a propaganda organization dedicated to the Trump campaign.
Breitbart News has also now openly embraced the “Nationalist/Populist” viewpoint, which is in direct opposition to limited-government conservatism that channels the philosophy of the Founding Fathers. It is becoming impossible for conservatives like myself to continue working for the organizations, which now relentlessly pushes a perspective directly at odds with my fundamental beliefs.
I believe the integrity of Breitbart News, my own personal integrity, and the legacy of Andrew Breitbart are at stake, which is why I had to resign.
In the past few months, Breitbart has become a mouthpiece for the Trump campaign. Many are saying that they are being paid by Trump as well. I have no idea, but that is out there and is damaging all by itself.
I am royally ticked off at Breitbart, Drudge and Gateway Pundit on numerous fronts. The whole Trump thing has gotten out of hand. Whatever happened to letting others have the right to support whoever they want? These are privately held media blogs, so they can do whatever they want. But their credibility for unbiased reporting is long gone and so is a big part of their audience. All of them have spouted the worst lies about Ted Cruz… it’s reprehensible and lawsuit worthy. All so they can get their candidate to win and so they have a license not only to be right, but to be angry. This is not what Andrew Breitbart’s vision was and his mission has been betrayed by those that followed him. The site’s ethos, said Kurt Bardella, the spokesman who resigned, had been that “everyone should unilaterally be held accountable — whether it be Donald Trump or someone else.” As of this afternoon, Breitbart has now sent out cease and desist letters to those who have resigned to shut them up. Looks like Breitbart has Trump’s attorneys on tap. As my friend Bookworm Room put it: Andrew lived to tweak the MSM, not to emulate it.
Sides are being taken. It now appears to be constitutional conservatives against everyone else. Rifts have been forged that will never be mended in the conservative community. If Donald Trump figures that everyone will just fall in line once he gets the nomination, he’s sadly mistaken on that point. Trump’s campaign has set a template for anger and vengeance that I find exceedingly un-presidential. What bothers me even more is how most of the media and many blogs and radio shows are aligning with Trump. It’s what I call the ‘get em!’ mentality. What it really boils down to is an angry mob. Trump has done what the left could not do… he has torn us apart.
Our one best chance at restoring the Constitution and the vision of our Founding Fathers is Ted Cruz. He’s a man of character, principle and faith. He’s also brilliant and a staunch constitutionalist. If we are to survive, we need to elect Ted Cruz. If Donald Trump is elected, the Republican Party will no longer be recognizable and neither will America. This is a time for choosing and we should carefully select who is best qualified for the presidency using reason and not anger.
Corey Lewandowski is at it again. First he grabs Michelle Fields of Breitbart and denies it. Now this. This video that was taken at Trump’s Tucson rally clearly shows Lewandowski and another man behind a protester arguing with him. As the kid starts shouting and tries to rush into the crowd, Lewandowski grabs his collar and the other guy grabs him on the back. They both yank the kid back violently. He then spins around to confront them. See video below. The Trump campaign is denying this happened just as they did over Michelle Fields. That’s called ‘lying’ boys.
Video footage has emerged that appears to show Donald Trump’s campaign manager grabbing a protester’s collar during the Republican presidential candidate’s Saturday rally in Arizona just weeks after the campaign manager was accused of assaulting a Breitbart reporter at a press conference.
In this video clip, Corey Lewandowski appears to be grabbing a Trump protester by his collar and pulling him backwards into the crowd gathered at Trump’s Arizona rally.
Trump’s campaign issued a statement following the incident claiming that Lewandowski was not the one grabbing the protester by his collar.
This was the same rally where a black Trump supporter punched, kicked and stomped an anti-Trump protester who was being led out by police. See below. That supporter was also arrested and led off. This does not bode well for the atmosphere at Trump rallies. He says he does not condone violence and then he does. Then you have the violent leftists outside who are not only willing to fight, but want to bait Trump supporters into a fight. Trump’s campaign manager is a bully as far as I’m concerned and instead of standing by the guy, he should cut him loose. Unless of course he’s just the right kind of thug that Trump needs and supports. How much evidence do people need that Lewandowski is off the rails? This video and photo pretty much prove my point.
Here is Donald Trump's campaign manager in the Tucson crowd grabbing the collar of a protester. pic.twitter.com/JZ9RntWlHY
— Jacqueline Alemany (@JaxAlemany) March 19, 2016
Went to the Trump rally just to see how crazy it would be……..this is insane pic.twitter.com/QFwSwmNoI0
— Alex Satterly (@alex_satterly) March 19, 2016