An accusation blew up a campaign. The media did not know what to do.


Progressive website The Intercept (which exposed a bogus sexual misconduct complaint against a gay Democrat in Massachusetts last year) also looked into the accusations of Ms Kim, calling out former Stringer campaign assistants, and found out that a series of widely reported details of Ms Kim’s statement – but not Ms Kim’s main allegations – was inaccurate. A longtime New York politician who knew both Mr Stringer and Ms Kim at the time, Mike McGuire, also told me he was waiting to officially talk about what he considered to be factual errors. in Ms. Kim’s lawyer account. , but that I was only the second reporter to call her, after Ms. Glueck. Ms Kim, meanwhile, had been open about her motives – she wanted voters to know about the allegation.

It’s easy to attribute the relative lack of curiosity to the story behind the cliché of a hollowed out local media outlet, but that’s not really true in this case. The New York mayoral race has received rich and often ambitious coverage, as good and varied as I have seen it at least since 2001, often from new media like Politico and The City. The winner of the first round of the ballot, Eric Adams, saw reporters investigating his donors and scrutinizing his refrigerator.

In an article in Columbia Journalism Review, Andrea Gabor examined the coverage of the race and found that the allegations prompted news agencies to stop covering Mr Stringer as a top candidate. She suggested that reporters “recalibrate their judgments about how to cover candidates like Stringer in their wake.”

In May, Mr Stringer’s aides told me they were in talks with former endorsers to return, as well as the progressive movement’s biggest star, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, when they learned of a Allegation from Another Woman: That 30 years ago Mr Stringer sexually harassed her when she was working for him in a bar. The Times reported the story of the second woman, Teresa Logan, with corroboration. The next day, Ms Ocasio-Cortez backed Maya Wiley, who came in second after the in-person vote ended. She said time was running out and progressives had to unite, suggesting that the second allegation made its decision.

But when you go beyond journalists playing on winners and losers, and beyond politicians weighing endorsements, here’s the odd thing: It’s not clear that there is anything like a consensus among voters on how the decades-old allegations should have affected Mr Stringer’s support. Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York, for example, has resisted much more recent claims by his own aides. And even two of the lawmakers who dropped their support for Mr Stringer told me they are still grappling with the decision and their role and that of the media. Ms Ocasio-Cortez appeared to report a similar concern when on election day she revealed that she had ranked Mr Stringer second on her ballot.

State Senator Alessandra Biaggi said the moment had been “incredibly painful” but she began to feel “my integrity was compromised” by staying with Mr Stringer. She also said that if she had been a New York City voter, she would have ranked Mr. Stringer among her top picks and wished there was space for more nuance in public conversations about the allegations of sexual misconduct.

Yuh-Line Niou, an MP for Manhattan, told me that she believed the media had unfairly “put a lot of pressure on surviving women to speak out,” an experience that had been “frightening and violent. in many ways. She said she would have supported Mr Stringer if he had admitted that he had harmed Ms Kim, and added that her denial revealed that he had come ‘from a time when people didn’t talk. not what it is to be human., that you have to be perfect somehow.


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