New York Times editor says paper wasn’t ‘rigorous enough’ in checking disproven Giuliani sources

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The New York Times was one of several prominent news outlets that corrected their bombshell reporting on former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani supposedly being briefed by the FBI that he was a target of a Kremlin disinformation campaign, and faced calls to “burn” their anonymous sources.

New York federal agents raided Giuliani’s Lenox Hill apartment last week, seizing numerous electronic devices in fulfillment of a search warrant.

The raid came as the feds have been investigating whether he violated the law by lobbying the Trump administration on behalf of Ukrainian officials in 2019. 

The 76-year-old attorney, ripped the FBI following the raid, saying the feds are relentlessly pursuing him while having no interest in investigating the hard drives of current First Son Hunter Biden amid his own foreign dealings. Biden, 51, left a laptop at a Wilmington, Del., repair shop that reportedly chronicled within it damning photographs as well as information relating to his foreign business transactions.

Following the Giuliani raid, the Times, Washington Post and NBC News reported — then later retracted — that the former Big Apple mayor was told by counterintelligence officials that he was being targeted as part of a Russian-led disinformation campaign.

Dean Baquet, the Times’ executive editor, told the Washington Post that his outlet wasn’t “rigorous enough.”

“I think we all tend to drop our guard when we get beat and are trying to catch up. We need to grill sources more to make sure we understand exactly what they’re confirming. We’ve all discussed it, corrected it, and we need to do better,” Baquet continued.

“Dealing with anonymous sources in law enforcement and intelligence is always hard.”

The Times’ correction stated that the personal attorney of Donald Trump had not received a “so-called defensive briefing.”

The corrections prompted Giuliani to demand they reveal who their sources were following the retractions. 

The three outlets were quickly called out on social media for the inaccurate reporting, with some drawing into question the standards they use to verify information from anonymous sources, and others calling for the outlets to “burn” the sources.

Meanwhile, Giuliani’s 35-year-old son Andrew, seized on the FBI raid of his father’s apartment and office to double down on his intent to seek the New York governorship against an embattled Andrew M. Cuomo.


Cuomo, a Queens Democrat, is likely to seek a fourth term in non-term-limited Albany, and the ex-mayor’s son told Fox News earlier this week that the raid hardened his “resolve.”

“[The FBI raid] actually only gave me more confidence that running is the right path, to be perfectly honest,” he told Fox News. “I think they are threatened by a Gov. Giuliani, if I were to run. My resolve is as strong as ever.”

Giuliani said he doesn’t have an “official announcement” just yet, but said one could be coming soon.

Fox News’ Brooke Singman, Brandon Gillespie and Yael Halon contributed to this report.

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