- The Washington Times
Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Deputy Washington editor Jonathan Weisman of The New York Times was demoted Tuesday following a series of controversial tweets.

Times spokeswoman Eileen Murphy said in a statement that Mr. Weisman met with executive editor Dean Baquet earlier Tuesday and apologized for “his recent serious lapses in judgment.”


“As a consequence of his actions, he has been demoted and will no longer be overseeing the team that covers Congress or be active on social media,” Ms. Murphy said. “We don’t typically discuss personnel matters but we’re doing so in this instance with Jonathan’s knowledge.”

Mr. Weisman ran into trouble last month when he publicly questioned whether Reps. Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar were from the Midwest.

“Saying @RashidaTlaib (D-Detroit) and @IlhanMN (D-Minneapolis) are from the Midwest is like saying Lloyd Doggett (D-Austin) is from Texas or @repjohnlewis (D-Atlanta) is from the Deep South. C’mon,” he wrote in a now-deleted tweet.

Last week, Mr. Weisman sparked ridicule for a tweet claiming the progressive political action committee Justice Democrats had backed an Ohio primary challenger “seeking to unseat an African-American Democrat, Joyce Beatty,” without acknowledging that the endorsed candidate, Morgan Harper, is also black.

He later faced criticism after author Roxane Gay posted purported screenshots of an email she received from the Times editor, who demanded she give him an “enormous apology” for her criticism of the tweets.

In a statement last week, The Times said Mr. Weisman “repeatedly displayed poor judgment on social media and in responding to criticism,” and that the paper was determining how to handle the situation.

Mr. Weisman told The Times’ media reporter Marc Tracy on Tuesday that he respected Mr. Baquet’s decision to demote him.

“I accept Dean’s judgment,” Mr. Weisman said. “I think he’s right to do what he’s doing. I embarrassed the newspaper, and he had to act.”

The paper did not say Mr. Weisman’s new role would entail.


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