NY Post reporter leaves job — says she was 'ordered' to write a false story about Kamala Harris
New York Post reporter Laura Italiano announced on Twitter Tuesday afternoon that she had resigned from her position after controversy erupted around a false story she had printed.
She had published a story claiming that the U.S. government was giving copies of Vice President Kamala Harris's kids book to migrant children in federal custody.
"Unaccompanied migrant kids brought from the U.S.-Mexico border to a new shelter in Long Beach, Calif., will be given a copy of her 2019 children's book, 'Superheroes are Everywhere,' in their welcome kits," the story had read. As reported, it put the vice president in an awkward light and raised questions about whether the U.S. government was inappropriately putting money in her pocket.
But it wasn't true. When the Washington Post looked into the story, it found there was little to back it up.
The story, however, had already spread exponentially on right-wing media, inspiring denunciations of the administration from prominent GOP politicians who assumed the allegations were accurate. A Fox News reporter brought it up during Monday's White House press briefing. As others looked into the claims, the New York Post backtracked and made some changes, leaving this note at the bottom of the story:
The original version of this article said migrant kids were getting Harris' book in a welcome kit, but has been updated to note that only one known copy of the book was given to a child.
The Washington Post explained:
In fact, it's not even clear whether a child actually received that single copy of the book, which was photographed by Reuters on a vacant bed at a shelter in Long Beach, Calif., last week. It was one of many items, including toys and clothing, donated by residents in a citywide drive, Long Beach officials said. No government funds were used to purchase the items, according to city spokeswoman.
Now Italiano claims she didn't want to want to write the New York Post story in the first place.
"The Kamala Harris story -- an incorrect story I was ordered to write and which I failed to push back hard enough against -- was my breaking point," she said on Twitter. "It's been a privilege to cover the City of New York for its liveliest, wittiest tabloid -- a paper filled with reporters and editors I admire deeply and hold as friends. I'm sad to leave."
Some pointed out that she didn't apologize for writing the incorrect story or name who ordered her to write it.
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