Contrasting coverage when people lie to the FBI is instructive.

Remember the massive coverage and overheated rhetoric (continuing to this day) when the FBI tangled General Michael Flynn into a “false statement”?  Compare that memory with this just-the-facts coverage of a Democrat National Committee lawyer’s predicament in the New York Times.  

The headline is in the passive voice: “Durham Is Said to Seek Indictment of Lawyer at Firm With Democratic Ties.”  The lede emphasizes that “he denies wrongdoing.”  The reporters imply that the matter is only newsworthy because, if it goes forward, the case “is likely to attract significant political attention,” in true “Republicans pounce” fashion.  Oh, and by the way, “an indictment is not a certainty.”

The New York Times treated such “political attention” cases quite differently when the people in the spotlight were on the other side, with headlines like:  “Trump Team Knew Flynn Was Under Investigation,” “What (if Anything) Does Carter Page Know?,” and “Ongoing Trump Migraine: His Initial Foreign Policy Team.”

The Times led the way in drumming up scandal, making them seem real rather than “political,” and pinning things on President Trump.  Now they’re doing the opposite.

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