Hillary Clinton staffers described then-Politico reporter Maggie Haberman as an ideal “friendly journalist” to place stories advancing campaign narratives, according to leaked documents which the hacker “Guccifer 2.0” provided to The Intercept.
Authors Glenn Greenwald and Lee Fang reveal an excerpt from a January 2015 strategy memo, which says that Haberman (now writing for the New York Times) has a sterling record of “teeing up stories” for the Clinton campaign:
We have has [sic] a very good relationship with Maggie Haberman of Politico over the last year. We have had her tee up stories for us before and have never been disappointed. While we should have a larger conversation in the near future about a broader strategy for reengageing [sic] the beat press that covers HRC, for this we think our objective and do the most shaping by going to Maggie.
In the first article, Haberman describes touts Clinton’s decision to hire a research team to unearth negative items about her — a process called “self-vetting.” Her insider account bore the title “Hillary Clinton Begins Process of Vetting — Herself”:
The scope of the firm’s work is unclear. But self-research is considered critical in campaigns. And in the six years since Mrs. Clinton was last a candidate, she has created a paper trail of paid speeches, charitable donations and diplomatic decisions as secretary of state.
For months, Democrats not aligned with Mrs. Clinton had privately wondered whether she had started the process of assessing the scope of existing documents, information and other potential material her rivals could use against her. Some expressed concern that she was beginning this self-scrubbing process relatively late, and might not leave herself enough time to learn about her own potential vulnerabilities to be able to respond effectively.
In the second article, “Hillary Clinton Aides Are in Talks to Fill Top Campaign Roles,” Haberman shows the care and concern Clinton had building her team:
The prospects are mostly people who have worked with Mrs. Clinton before, according to a person familiar with the discussions, who asked for anonymity to speak freely about personnel discussions.
The conversations reflect a fast-moving effort by Mrs. Clinton to build a campaign as a number of Democratic Party operatives are vying for position. While the budding campaign had been criticized as too white and too male in its early stages, this group of operatives is diverse and would give Mrs. Clinton a number of women and people of color in top jobs.
Greenwald and Fang wrote that they gave both the Clinton campaign and Haberman 24 hours to contest the veracity of the documents. Haberman has not responded to an email inquiry from Breitbart News sent several hours before publication.