The New York Times didn’t air audio of Pres. Donald Trump’s senior policy adviser Stephen Miller talking about border policy because Miller objected. “Many” readers questioned that, the Times admitted.
The Times had recorded its interview with Miller for a news story.
One of the reporters on the story, Julie Hirschfeld Davis, told the Times‘ Michael Barbaro in a podcast, the Washington Post‘s Erik Wemple reported, that the White House was “not at all comfortable with us using that audio” because the reporters didn’t tell Miller that the interview would be aired. “The purpose was, we were doing a big, deep-dive story on this family separation practice that’s broken out all over the country, and we didn’t talk about any sort of alternative uses for the interview and when they found out that his voice was actually going to be on a podcast discussing it, they asked us not to use it,” Davis said.
Davis tweeted to explain that for the interview, she and reporter Michael D. Shear “never requested a podcast interview or permission to use audio.” Shear added that the pair did report the text of his comments, but they did not publish the audio.
Folks, I get the objections to what appears to be an after-fact revocation of an on-record agreement w Miller, but understand that @shearm & I never requested a podcast interview or permission to use audio. /1
— Julie Davis (@juliehdavis) June 19, 2018
I want to add my voice here to Julie’s thoughts. We conducted an on-the-record interview that pressed Miller to discuss an important, timely issue in depth — something that no one else had managed to do. We reported on that interview in this story: https://t.co/Bt9pIW1w4t ../1 https://t.co/wuMl7uqBNm
— Michael D. Shear (@shearm) June 19, 2018
iMediaEthics asked the Times how the White House learned the the newspaper was planning to use the audio in a podcast which was what prompted Miller’s objections. The Times said that question “would be best put to the White House.” iMediaEthics has written to the White House to ask.
“We conducted an extended White House interview with Stephen Miller for a weekend story about the Trump administration’s border policy. Miller was quoted, on the record, in that story.
“After the original story was published, producers of The Daily planned to talk with the reporter and use audio excerpts from the Miller interview. White House officials objected, saying that they had not agreed to a podcast interview. While Miller’s comments were on the record, we realized that the ground rules for the original interview were not clear, and so we made a decision not to run the audio.
“But to reiterate: The Times made extensive use of the Miller interview in both the original weekend story and The Daily.”