This is why so many decent people would never consider running for public office. Gawker published an anonymous story from a guy who claims to have had a one night stand with Christine O’Donnell three years ago. How convenient that the story came out just days before the election. The unknown author clearly wrote the story with the intent of humiliating O’Donnell, and he got paid to do it. It’s so sleazy, even a HuffPo writer objects.
Nice timing, bud! You even managed to get the Halloween news hook in!
I obviously have no idea whether any part of this story is true. But if it or any part of it IS true, given its explosive effects not only on the election but upon O’Donnell’s career and reputation, Gawker has a duty to come clean (sorry — that may be impossible) or at least verify every sordid fact in it.
It’s a sorry moment in political journalism when we must look towards the National Enquirer as a standard-bearer in reporting ethics.
This is just sad. Nice culture we’ve got here.
Joseph Lawler, who is no big fan of Christine O’Donnell had this to say.
Lastly, the Gawker item doesn’t reveal the name of the guy who claims to have hooked up with O’Donnell, and it crops him from the photos of her. If this guy thinks that he can preserve his anonymity after selling his story to a popular blog, complete with tons of identifying and corroborating details, he’s got a rude surprise in wait. I’m guessing it’s only a matter of hours until he is identified, and a rival blog puts up a post about him. The damage to his personal reputation will exceed whatever payment Gawker gave him, and rightfully so.
I hope he’s right.
Update: It looks like we may know the identity of “Anonymous,” that didn’t take long. The Smoking Gun learned the identity of the owner of the Boy Scout uniform “Anonymous” wore as a Halloween costume on the night in question. His name is Brad Kurisko. He loaned the uniform to a friend.
While Kurisko refused to out “Anonymous,” some online activity this evening may point to the author’s identity. Shortly after his last phone conversation with a TSG reporter, a single name disappeared from Kurisko’s list of Facebook friends.
The man with whom electronic ties were abruptly cut is Dustin Dominiak, a 28-year-old buddy who attended Albion College with Kurisko. Records show that Dominiak has previously shared a Philadelphia address with Kurisko. One online posting reports that Dominiak, a Michigan native, has worked as an auditor at the Federal Reserve in Philadelphia. Dominiak is pictured at left in a rather lousy Facebook photo.
Soon after Dominiak’s name vanished from Kurisko’s list of friends, Dominiak’s entire Facebook page (which listed 356 friends) was suddenly deactivated. Perhaps this was Dominiak’s attempt to achieve a greater degree of anonymity.
Once this news gets out it’s doubtful Dominiak will ever get a date again.
Update 2: Michelle Malkin reminds us of all of Gawker’s past smears against conservative women.
Update 3: O’Donnell responds:
“This story is just another example of the sexism and slander that female candidates are forced to deal with. From Secretary Clinton, to Governor Palin, to soon-to-be Governor Haley, Christine’s political opponents have been willing to engage in appalling and baseless attacks — all with the aim of distracting the press from covering the real issues in this race. Even the National Organization for Women gets it, but Christine’s opponent disturbingly does not. As Chris Coons said on September 16th he would not condone personal attacks against Christine. Classless Coons goons have proven yet again to have no sense of common decency or common sense with their desperate attacks to get another rubber stamp for the Obama-Pelosi-Reid agenda. Such attacks are truly shameful, but they will not distract us from making our case to Delaware voters — and keeping the focus on Chris Coons’ record of higher taxes, increased spending, and as he has done again here, breaking his promises to the voters.”
The National Organization for Women (NOW) on Thursday condemned the tabloid website Gawker for publishing an anonymous account: NOW issued a statement late Thursday stating that “sexist, misogynist attacks against women have no place in the electoral process, regardless of a particular candidate’s political ideology.”
“NOW repudiates Gawker’s decision to run this piece. It operates as public sexual harassment. And like all sexual harassment, it targets not only O’Donnell, but all women contemplating stepping into the public sphere,” said NOW president Terry O’Neill.