Washington Post star reporter Karen Tumulty was seen engaging in something of a Twitter pratfall Tuesday morning as she attempted to defend her very personal and nasty hit-job against Jeb Bush’s wife, Columba. Apparently, in the age of ISIS and former-President Bill Clinton enjoying the regular company of a convicted sex offender, what Tumulty sees as a priority is Columba Bush’s legal jewelry purchases from 1999.
Tumulty’s Ready-For-Hillary opposition research is titled, “Documents show the expensive tastes of Jeb Bush’s low-key wife.” After re-warming the 15 year-old news (legitimate news, by the way) about Columba being fined by American customs officials for misrepresenting the worth of goods brought back from Paris, Tumulty paints Ms. Bush as plutocrat for — gasp — legally buying jewelry with her own money some 15 years ago:
Less than a year later, she took out a loan to buy $42,311.70 worth of jewelry on a single day, according to records filed with the state of Florida by Mayors Jewelers.
That purchase was part of a pattern by Columba Bush of borrowing to buy tens of thousands of dollars of jewelry at a time from the South Florida store over a 14-year period. Documentation available online, which does not include the details of two transactions made less than six weeks apart in 1995, shows that she spent a total of more than $90,000 at the store.
News-wise, this is Tumulty and WaPo being personal and vicious. This is the politics of personal destruction disguised as news. There is nothing at all newsworthy or relevant about legal jewelry purchases made by anyone from 1999, or any year.
What this “news” does do, of course, is fit beautifully into the plutocrat narrative Democrats have been effectively using against Republicans since before I was born.
Basically, this is The Washington Post being The Washington Post.
What is worth reporting is Tumlty’s clumsy inability to defend her reporting. When simply asked for an example of her or the Washington Post ever doing an investigative report into the private and perfectly legal purchase of luxury items made by Democrats, all she could summon was a 50 year-old story about Jackie Kennedy that didn’t even come from WaPo.
Then Tumulty attempted to lay this one on me:
— Karen Tumulty (@ktumulty) February 24, 2015
Apparently Tumulty didn’t read the story she linked. It is headlined, “John Sununu questions cost of Michelle Obama’s dress,” and opens with five paragraphs attacking Sununu for questioning the cost of Michelle Obama’s dress.
John Sununu is a former New Hampshire governor, White House chief of staff and currently a fashionista.
It seems an unlikely role, but Sununu, the GOP attack dog, placed himself in that role this week.
He’s questioned that the Tracy Reese dress that first lady Michelle Obama wore for her Tuesday night speech in Charlotte cost only $350. He alleged on a conference call to reporters on Wednesday that the Obama camp was telling a host of lies including the dress’s price.
Somehow I don’t think that’s the truth either,” he said, regarding the dress.
Oh, Mr. Sununu, you should always stay far away from any fashion debate. It simply isn’t your cup of tea. Stick with Medicare.
The piece then goes on to pretty much gush over the First Lady’s fashion sense before closing with a vigorous huzzah for Michelle Obama, a cheap shot at Ann Romney’s intelligence, and a request that Sununu shut his ignorant mouth:
For example, according to the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota, Obama’s Tuesday night speech was written at a 12th grade level. That’s the highest in history for a first lady’s speech. Ann Romney’s speech was written at a fifth grade level, the lowest in history.
Let’s talk about that, shall we, Mr. Sununu?
When pressed further for an example of the Washington Post ever investigating the legal purchases made by any Democrat, Tumulty could only sputter:
— Karen Tumulty (@ktumulty) February 24, 2015
Bias isn’t true or false, bias comes from the choices a reporter makes about who and what to tell the truth about.
Tumulty and the Post CHOSE to tell the truth about Columba Bush’s 15 year-old private jewelry purchases, and have thus far CHOSEN to not dig into or report on the luxury purchases made by Democrats. Tumulty and the Post aren’t even interested in the breaking news about the profitable relationship Hillary Clinton’s husband has with a convicted sex offender.
And as you can see in the example Tumulty herself sent me, when a Republican questions luxury purchases made by a Democrat, that Republican is brutalized by the same Washington Post reporter digging into Columba Bush’s luxury purchases.
“My story is true” is the last refuge of Democrat opposition-researchers with Washington Post bylines.
John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC