Wikileaks: NY Times’ Mark Leibovich Obeyed Request to Cut Palin Joke from Hillary Interview

Clinton and Palin AP Photos

The New York Times allowed the Clinton Campaign to pick and choose what parts of an interview with Hillary Rodham Clinton would be used in an article titled, “Re-Re-Re-Reintroducing Hillary Clinton,” the Wikileaks release of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta’s emails have revealed.

The Clinton campaign vetoed nearly the entire interview, but even in the portions they did approve for publication, they had Mark Leibovich edit out a mention of Sarah Palin, apparently at Hillary’s personal request.

“My apologies for the delay. I finally had to get her in person,” Clinton Campaign Communication Director Jennifer Palmieri replies to Leibovich, implying that she had to wait to talk to Hillary about what parts of the interview they would allow being used. “Fine to use the moose, but appreciate leaving the mention of Sarah Palin out.”

During the portion of the interview about the “moose” Hillary talks about having eaten “moose stew” and says of Palin, “So that’s why I always got a big kick out of Sarah Palin with all of her, “We’re cooking up some moose stew here.” (Laughter.)” The conversation then goes into what’s more dangerous a “mother grizzly” or a “mother moose.”

The email exchange (Wikileaks Podesta Email 4213) between Palmieri and New York Times writer Mark Leibovich was forwarded to John Podesta by Palmieri in July 2015. Leibovich sends a transcript from the portions of his interview with Hillary that he would like to use saying, “I wanted option to use the following (obviously wouldn’t use all, but a portion) *These exchanges were pretty interesting…..would love the option to use….*”

Leibovich categorizes the portions of the interview he requests to use under sections titled, “*Moose* , THE BLIND DATE, MENTAL HEALTH, FEELING BETTER PREPARED, *“RELATING”*, and *“NORMAL PERSON”*.” Besides granting Leibovich permission to use “the moose” with the condition of leaving out mention of Palin, the campaign gives him permission to use two other sections but again with conditions.

Palmieri explains, “From last two questions, fine to use everything from the paragraph starting, ‘and to get serious for just a minute…’ till the end of the interview as on the record — with the exception of this passage which I ask you leave out: ‘and gay rights has moved much faster than women’s rights or civil rights, which is an interesting phenomenon somebody in the future will unpack.'”

Leibovich opens his article using his sighting of a moose as a “point of connection” with Hillary. As instructed he conceals Clinton’s mention of Palin and all other portions of the interview the campaign vetoed.

Despite allowing the Clinton campaign the ability to veto any interview content, in his article, Leibovich brags that even after the campaign sent him an email in the leadup to his story instructing him that the campaign office was “OTR” or off-the-record, he responded by writing that he “wasn’t abiding by any ‘office is off the record provisions.'”

After dishing out the marching orders, Palmieri finishes by telling Leibovich, “Pleasure doing business.”

Dustin Stockton is a political reporter for Breitbart News, a community liaison for Gun Owners of America, and a political strategist. Follow him on Twitter @DustinStockton or  Facebook.


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.