Liberal watchdog group Media Matters for America attempted to smear Internet gossip columnist Matt Drudge for attempting to smear Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) by linking to an Associated Press report that falsely suggested that Kerry and Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Richard Lugar (R-IN) “may have blown” the cover of CIA officer Fulton Armstrong.
Rather than direct their watchdog ire at the Associated Press (who were responsible for the story), or the major newspapers that ran the story like The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian UK, The New York Post, etc., Media Matters elects to attack Matt Drudge for merely linking to the story. Examples of the headlines are shown below:
Los Angeles Times – Senators May Have Blown Cover of CIA Agent
Drudge headline – Kerry Blows CIA Agent Cover?…
Drudge’s transgression appears to modifying an AP headline to focus on Kerry, while ignoring Lugar. No offense to Senator Lugar, but his name hardly captures reader interest the way a former candidate for President does. Nowhere does Media Matters accuse mainstream news outlets of attempting to smear Kerry (or Lugar) by running the AP story, that honor is reserved for the one site that merely linked to a wire service copy of the article. By leading off with an attack on Drudge, Media Matters shifts the focus off the real story – the shoddiness of Associated Press reporter Anne Gearan’s research. Even rudimentary web research on the name Fulton Armstrong indicates that his “cover” was not blown.