CNN’s Brian Stelter has been caught engaging in exactly the kind of journalistic malpractice that has damaged whatever was left of CNN’s pathetic reputation.
In Stelter’s “Reliable Sources” email, he noted that Conservative Review Editor-in-Chief Mark Levin declined his interview request. “I’ve zero respect for CNN or you. You’re a propagandist,” Levin replied.
Mark Levin declined my interview requests...
"Another Mark Levin Best-Seller Spiked," the conservative Media Research Center said in an email blast earlier this week. MRC claimed Levin has been "censored" by the establishment media, "with not a single interview granted" about the new book. (Levin has been on Fox multiple times touting the book.)
I saw this as an opportunity to re-up our months-old requests for Levin to come on "Reliable Sources." Surely, since MRC says he's been "censored," he'd jump at any chance at a non-Fox interview? But when I emailed him the offer on Thursday, he replied, "Are you kidding me? Buddy, I've zero respect for CNN or you. You're a propagandist."
Maybe MRC wants to re-think its "censorship" claim?
Levin provided Conservative Review with the complete text of the email exchange he had with Stelter. It reveals that Stelter selectively quoted Levin in his newsletter.
Here is the original request from Stelter:
I would love to have you on this Sunday's "Reliable Sources." A chance to tout your book to one million new viewers. If you can't come on live on Sunday, we could tape it today or Friday. Hope you'll consider it.
To which Levin replied:
Are you kidding me? Buddy, I've zero respect for CNN or you. You're a propagandist.
In a follow-up email, Stelter asked:
Do you believe, as MRC does, that you are being ‘censored,’ with ‘not a single interview granted?’
You only asked after they issued their statement. Why is that? Now you can say you asked. Make sure you get the order of things right. You're not very good at that. Also make sure you report that I dismissed you as a propagandist and CNN as a joke.
“What did I do to anger you?” Stelter asked. Levin ignored that message, as he explained on the radio Thursday:
“He can’t be that dense, can he Mr. Producer?” Levin asked. “This is the fool I tangled with in March who screwed up the whole FISA issue and the domestic surveillance. His program is notoriously biased, and I personally think he’s rather stupid. So what’s the point?”
As Levin noted in his email exchange with Stelter, he only made his request for an interview after MRC claimed the mainstream media were ignoring Levin’s new book, “Rediscovering Americanism: And the Tyranny of Progressivism.” As Levin explained, he was only invited on the program so Stelter could say he asked.
Last March, Stelter accused Levin of starting a “conspiracy theory” after Levin raised questions regarding the extent to which the Obama administration may have surveilled private U.S. citizens working on the Trump presidential campaign. Stelter wrote that Levin used “cherry-picked news stories that supported his thesis and omitted information that cut against it.”
In an open letter to Stelter, Levin called Stelter “thoroughly dishonest” and questioned why he ignored the overwhelming evidence that the Obama administration used “police state tactics” against Trump. News reports have since confirmed that.
“Your lack of curiosity and dishonesty about such matters, and in dealing with me, demean you and your profession,” Levin wrote at the time.
Brian Stelter has not responded to Conservative Review’s request for comment.