Posted 16 February 2004 - 11:37 PM
I was going by the comments of people on several blogs who said they saw it on Fox-- I'm still checking for verification. In the meantime, here's the Washington Post's flow chart of how the story made its way through the media:
Drudge's report was promptly picked up by conservative radio hosts Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh and by the Web sites of National Review and the Wall Street Journal, and was analyzed online by Slate, Salon and commentator Andrew Sullivan, among others. Although it was probably the most talked-about story in Washington that day, most of the mainstream media, including The Washington Post, declined to report it because of the lack of evidence.
On Friday, Don Imus, whose radio program is simulcast on MSNBC, asked Kerry about the rumor. "Well, there is nothing to report," the presidential candidate said. "So there is nothing to talk about. I'm not worried about it. No. The answer is no." Kerry told reporters later that day: "I just deny it categorically. It's rumor. It's untrue."
Kerry's denial catapulted the story onto the front pages of the New York Post and New York Daily News. ABC anchor Peter Jennings reported Kerry's denial that evening, as did CNN. The New York Times mentioned the senator's denial in a campaign story Saturday.
Several British newspapers, meanwhile, named Polier and ran her photo. The story was prominently featured by the Times of London ("Dirty tricks row hits race for President") and the Sun ("New JFK Hit by Scandal"), which, like the New York Post, are owned by conservative media baron Rupert Murdoch.
As for Drudge, while it's true he didn't come out and report the alleged affair as fact, he also used highly loaded and as it turns out inaccurate language to describe the whole thing. He described Polier as an "intern" and broadly implied she had worked for Kerry when in fact she was a junior reporter for the AP and never worked for Kerry, and he described her as having fled to Africa to avoid scrutiny when in fact she was in Kenya with her fiancee, who lives there. It was a typically Drudge melange of fact, innuendo, and outright lying.
"Some day, after we have mastered the wind, the waves, the tides, and gravity,
We shall harness for God the energies of Love.
Then, for the second time in the history of the world,
we will have discovered fire."
--Father Pierre Teilhard de Chardin