(PresidentialWire.com)- Despite on record denials disputing NPR’s false report about a brewing mask dispute between Justices Sotomayor and Gorsuch, an establishment “news rating” group continues to cautiously defend NPR for its fake news.
Last Tuesday, NPR Supreme Court reporter Nina Totenberg released a story claiming that at the request of Sonia Sotomayor, Chief Justice John Roberts asked the nine justices to wear masks in court. But, according to Totenberg’s “source,” Justice Neil Gorsuch refused, thereby forcing the 67-year-old Sotomayor to attend hearings remotely out of concern for her health.
The story had the desired effect. In no time, every news outlet was whining about what a mean, selfish, disrespectful man Neil Gorsuch is for selfishly refusing to mask up out of respect for his colleague.
Blue-check “journalists” and leftwing activists on Twitter took the bait and ran with it.
But less than 24-hours after NPR released the report, everyone named in the story went on the record to debunk it.
Justices Gorsuch and Sotomayor released a joint statement calling the claims in Totenberg’s piece “false.” In their statement, the Justices noted that although they may disagree about the law at times, “we are warm colleagues and friends.”
Chief Justice Roberts released his own statement denying Totenberg’s claim, saying he did not ask Gorsuch or any other justice to wear a mask.
After the on-the-record denials, Nina Totenberg doubled down, tweeting that she stands by her source. Then NPR published a statement saying it stood by Totenberg’s story, arguing that it was “incontrovertible” that all justices started wearing masks except Gorsuch, and Sotomayor is attending hearings virtually.
But none of those “incontrovertible” facts mean that Roberts asked everyone to mask up at the request of Sotomayor. Nor do those facts “prove” that Sotomayor attending remotely was due to Neil Gorsuch.
Meanwhile, the news rating project NewsGuard, which purportedly fights untrustworthy news outlets, continued to defend NPR, arguing that the facts of the story were still unfolding.
Despite all three Justices cited in the story flatly denying it, NewsGuard general manager Matt Skibinski claimed that the “back and forth” concerning the facts are “still ongoing” and NewsGuard was “monitoring to see how things unfold.”