, 53 tweets, 12 min read Read on Twitter
Maggie Haberman:

Where are people getting the impression she is an access journalist and Trump shill?

Baffling?

Let's take a closer look.
The year is 2011. In February, Maggie Haberman pens an article in Politico "The Donald reins in Roger Stone", quoting from an interview with Donald himself who phoned Maggie. The article was ostensibly floating a Presidential bid.

politico.com/story/2011/02/…
The article contains this statement: "It's impossible to independently assess Trump's (net) worth". Seems fair.
Fast forward to March 2011.

Donald Trump begins publicly questioning if Obama was born in America. While Trump faces pushback over the controversy (NYT ran an article "Donald Trump is getting weirder"), weeks later 2 articles by Maggie Haberman appear in Politico.
politico.com/story/2011/04/…

The first article continues to float a Presidential bid by Trump. It offers information that Trump personally called Kellyanne Conway, who helped Trump connect to evangelicals. It was at this time that Trump reversed his position on abortion.
A week later with Trump continuing to take heavy fire over his birtherism and questions about his finances, this gem appears in Politico by Maggie Haberman.

politico.com/story/2011/04/…

"Trump: The $7 Billion dollar man".
The article cites "Sources with knowledge of Trump's financial holdings" to make the dubious claim that Trump has "very little debt" and great cash flow while continuing to float a Presidential campaign bid.
This bold claim of Trump's wealth, relying on anonymous sources in Trump World, came mere weeks after Haberman herself claimed it was impossible to independently verify his net worth.

Impossible to independently verify it yet runs an article stating his net worth is $7 billion?
We now know that these claims (little debt) were preposterous but they were preposterous at the time if we trust Forbes over Haberman's anonymous sources within Team Trump. (Forbes estimated his net worth at a shade over $2 billion & leveraged.)
What we have here are early signs of a pattern.

Donald Trump does or says something which invites criticism and condemnation.

Maggie Haberman is then granted a direct interview or publishes a favorable Trump piece.

Let's see how the pattern continued.
October 6th, 2016 the Access Hollywood tapes emerge. Maggie Haberman would write TWO articles related to this episode. (She wrote FIFTY THREE on Hillary's emails).

This piece portrayed Trump in a sympathetic light:

google.ie/amp/s/www.nyti…
The lede refers to his massive ambition and subtle implication of success and achievement (Trump Tower).
The copy paints a sympathetic picture of "poor Donald" isolated and not in the best of spirits. It references a personal phone call Donald made to Maggie without her admitting he made it.
The piece closes on Donald Trump emerging like a rock star.

Remember - this was days after Donald Trump was caught on tape bragging about sexual abuse.

And this was the Haberman treatment.
The theme continued. Jared Kushner, under increasing scrutiny post election, is given the Haberman treatment.

nytimes.com/2016/11/20/us/…
Jared portrayed as a steadying voice of reason and wisdom. No examination of the multiple accusations of corruption and nepotism which were swirling.
When Ivanka came under heavy fire in 2017, Maggie wrote a hugely sympathetic piece relying on anonymous sources to paint a very rosy picture.

"Pillars of the West Wing"

nytimes.com/2017/04/15/us/…
This is where it takes some dark turns. Bad as it was to do Trump's PR for him over Access Hollywood and Birtherism, Maggie went above and beyond the call of duty for Donald post Charlottesville.

While the rest of the world was condemning his "both sides" rhetoric.....
... Maggie Haberman published a piece which can be best summarised as "Donald Trump is not a racist as he once dated a black girl and has black acquaintances".

nytimes.com/2017/08/17/us/…
The lede:

Donald is no racist.
The copy:

Donald is no racist he had black friends.
Of course you could disregard the fact that Maggie Haberman wrote 94 articles on Hillary's emails & Benghazi (combined) and ZERO on Trump's longstanding connections to mafia/mob/Felix Sater/racism.

That in itself might be a coincidence.
What's not a coincidence is every time Donald Trump has got himself into serious hot water, Maggie Haberman has been on hand to lend a helping hand.
2011: Birtherism & Maggie runs PR piece stating how rich he is.

2016: Access Hollywood & Maggie runs a sympathy piece.

2017: Obamacare Repeal fail and Donald calls Maggie to give a world exclusive interview.

2017: Charlottesville "both sides" & Maggie runs "not racist" piece.
Is Maggie Haberman a shill for Donald Trump? Has she carried water for him?

The answer depends on your perspective but she definitely relies on access to Trump World.

What I do know is when Donald is in trouble he runs to Maggie to get his side of the story out.
For a guy who criticizes the Fake News media so much, it's interesting he has given Maggie over 20 on record exclusive interviews over the last 7 years.

I have little doubt "John Barron" was one of her many anonymous sources over the years.
I could have included dozens of other examples in this thread but the pattern and theme is clear for all to see.
Stating it's "impossible to independently verify" someone's net worth and then writing an article emphatically stating their net worth to be 3x higher than Forbes estimates, based on one anonymous source in the Trump Organization..

That isn't journalism. That is free PR work.
Writing an article asserting someone is not a racist because he once dated a biracial woman and once had some black friends, while ignoring mountains of evidence of racism...

That isn't journalism. That is free PR work.
Writing a combined 94 articles on Hillary's emails & Benghazi whilst writing a princely ZERO on a whole range of Trump scandals from his past...

That isn't balanced journalism. It isn't even PR work at that point.

It is glorified campaigning by stealth.
Some people have told me to lighten up. That sure Maggie kissed up to Donald with nice articles because she was relying on the inside access he gave to her.

Fine.

That's not journalism though. If that's the job she wanted, she could have applied for Sarah Sanders job.
It is a common and infuriating misconception that the NYT and WaPo were running interference for Hillary.

The evidence actually shows the key players in both NYT and WaPo were actively undermining her campaign by relentlessly pursuing her foundation/emails/Benghazi...
...whilst simultaneously ignoring glaring issues with the Trump foundation/Russia connections/mafia connections/sexual abuse allegations.

It's actually frightening (and impressive) how a lot of journalists with long connections to Trump ended up being so influential.
I have absolutely nothing against Maggie Haberman personally. I wish all human beings health and happiness (except Nazi's and people who lock children in cages).

I just wanted to shine a light on the reality of access journalism to the readers of her pieces.
Just to add a couple of receipts in case anyone actually thinks Donald viewed Maggie as an adversary/antagonist:

July 22nd, 2016: Trump gives Maggie a sit-down interview at the Republican Convention to outline his foreign policy agenda. nytimes.com/2016/07/22/us/…
January 25th, 2017: President Donald Trump calls Maggie Haberman's cellphone to give his first interview from inside the White House:

nytimes.com/2017/01/25/us/…
March 24th, 2017: Donald Trump calls Maggie Haberman's cellphone to give an interview after the failure of his Obamacare Repeal. (Trump also called Robert Costa of WaPo same day).
April 5th, 2017: Sit down interview with Maggie Haberman (and Glenn Thrush etc) granted by Trump, transcript linked below:

nytimes.com/2017/04/05/us/…
The first question from Maggie in this interview was about...

Neil Gorsuch.

That might give you an idea of what you're dealing with here when she chose to lead with the one thing Trump was guaranteed to get a W after repeated L's (inauguration debacle, Muslim Ban etc)
The point of this thread (which is solely my opinion) was to highlight the pitfalls of access journalism (not to attack Maggie as a human being). Ultimately if her employers are ok with access journalism, all we can do as readers is highlight it when we think we see it. /end.
(I forgot I am supposed to plug something when a thread gets popular so here goes)

I am not American and I am still awake here at 5:37am with your President threatening to destroy Iran.

So I am plugging this:

Please vote in November.

Thank you.
Notes:

I mentioned a 2011 article in the NYT to give some historical context as to the reaction to Trump's birtherism (compared to Maggie's take "The $7 Billion Dollar Man".)

I omitted the link, here it is:

"Donald Trump Gets Weirder"

nytimes.com/2011/04/02/opi… (/1)
Notes (cont):

I searched the MSM for articles portraying Donald Trump as *not racist* in the 2 weeks after Heather Heyer was murdered and the "both sides" press conference.

I found 2 articles:

Fox Contributor Jeremy Levitt in Orlando Sentinel
Maggie Haberman byline in NYT (/2)
Notes (cont):

I have been accused of sexism for my thread.

I would hope fair minded people will see my opinion is based on her work and not on her gender. (/3)
Lastly I have been told to mind my own business because I am not American and what's it to do with me anyway.

I love America. Some of the best traveling experiences I've had were in that great country, met lots of amazing people.

So that's a no to minding my own business :)
SORRY... there's more....

I am highly reluctant to add more tweets to this thread as it is far too long already, but I have some very important historical context to add which actually puts things in a slightly worse light... /1
..At the top of my thread I referenced the glorified PR piece Maggie wrote on Donald Trump's net worth (relying on a single anonymous source in Team Trump). I didn't give accurate context on the timing of that piece and how badly needed that PR was... /2
...Maggie's piece was published April 20th, 2011. After doing some more research, I have discovered that Michael Isikoff and NBC News ran a damning expose of Trump's financial dealings on national tv on April 19th, 2011... /3
...this was followed by an article in The Atlantic examining Trump's murky financial history, including quotes from a former Deutsche Bank official spilling the beans on Trump calling him a "deadbeat" (Yes this was 2011, deja vu)... /4
The Atlantic article is here:

theatlantic.com/politics/archi…

Part of the NBC expose is on youtube here ---> /5
My point is Trump was under FAR more scrutiny and fire over his finances than I previously alluded to, which makes the Haberman "Trump: The $7 Billion Dollar Man" article (sourced to one Trump source), even more indefensible.

How that got past her editors is another story... /6
...Either way that article Maggie wrote should have had flashing neon signs saying "PR" and "DAMAGE CONTROL" at the top of the article and instead it was dressed up as investigative journalism.

Access is never free.

(I hope the additional context helps) /end.
Words fail me.

There are hundreds of children still separated from their parents, Ivanka Trump is complicit in that and everything else the Trump regime does, and instead we get this Ivanka sympathy piece trying to gaslight us.

NO.

nytimes.com/2018/07/28/us/…
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