“Chicago Sun-Times reporter Dave McKinney resigned from the paper just days after the Free Beacon reported that his wife’s political firm was working to defeat Republican Bruce Rauner, who had been at the center of several critical reports by McKinney,” the Beacon reports today:
“It is with great sadness today that I tender my immediate resignation from the Sun-Times,” McKinney wrote on his personal blog.
While the reporter denied the allegations made by the Rauner campaign that his wife Ann Liston’s work conflicted with his political reporting, McKinney still decided to leave the paper after being placed on temporary leave.
Public records and other information obtained by the Free Beacon’s Adam Kredo connected Liston’s firm, Adelstein/Liston, to the Illinois Freedom Political Action Committee, which is backed by pro-Quinn public employee unions and has targeted Rauner throughout the 2014 campaign.
The Rauner campaign said McKinney had a clear conflict of interest and maintained that it could have impacted his work on a controversial story that accused the Republican of threatening a former colleague.
McKinney admitted that his wife does Democratic political work, but denied she is working to defeat Rauner.
“The [Rauner] campaign falsely claimed she was working with a PAC to defeat Rauner and demanded a disclaimer be attached to our story that would have been untrue,” McKinney claimed. “It was a last-ditch act of intimidation.”
“Yes, Ann does political consulting work for Democrats,” he wrote. “But she has not been involved in the Illinois’ governor’s race and has focused on out-of-state campaigns.”
As Glenn Reynolds noted, “Think of the [MSM] as Democratic operatives with bylines and you won’t be far wrong.” Or as Iowahawk noted today regarding the current sad state of American journalism as a whole:
Nixon 1974 only wishes he was sleazy and corrupt as Journalism 2014. #RIPBenBradlee
— David Burge (@iowahawkblog) October 22, 2014