The executive producer of The Young Turks, leftist journalist Ana Kasparian, apologized this week for promoting lies spread by fired Florida Department of Health employee Rebekah Jones who was propagating false claims about Governor Ron DeSantis’ handling of the COVID pandemic.
(Video Credit: The Young Turks)
“I want to correct all of those errors that we had previously reported,” Kasparian told her viewers. “And I want to be clear that out of everyone who works on the main show, the only person who should be held responsible for that is me. I’m the executive producer of the show, and I screwed up royally. And part of the reason why I screwed up is because I had all these biases, of course, against Ron DeSantis.”
Although the apology was unexpected by conservatives, Kasparian tempered it by saying that she did not feel bad about having biases against DeSantis because she thinks he’s done some terrible things in Florida.
“But it becomes a problem when that bias blinds you to what the facts of various stories happen to be,” she continued. “And I should have done my due diligence. I failed to do so.”
She slammed discredited conspiracy theorist Rebekah Jones for lying. Jones is a twice-failed Democrat congressional candidate who was fired by the DeSantis administration.
She always lies about her felony case by claiming it was already dismissed. ALWAYS. In reality, she signed a deferred prosecution agreement that will result in dismissal IF she abides by its terms. It is not dismissed yet. It may not be dismissed at all eventually. https://t.co/7JDcISHAPS pic.twitter.com/MCky55jDNL
— Damin Toell (@damintoell) April 12, 2023
“And by failing to do so, I feel like I’ve misled the audience into thinking that Rebecca Jones is some sort of hero,” Kasparian noted. “Now, to be fair to myself, and to be fair to other independent media sources, if you’re not doing your own original reporting, you’re relying on the mainstream media narrative a lot of the time, and if they’re not doing their due diligence, if they’re allowing their personal biases to stand in the way of actual factual reporting, well, that’s unfortunately going to trickle into the way independent news sources cover these types of stories as well.”
“Fact of the matter is, I want to make sure that I correct my errors,” the co-host added. “I get you guys accurate information, and I avoid helping someone who might be a grifter, from fundraising off of our own audience members.”
Ana Kasparian retracted TYT's coverage of the whole Rebekah Jones myth today & even explained that this was essentially the media & her specifically trying to get DeSantis during Covid & it was too good to fact check. As well as a woman trying to profit off of the lies
— Sean Fitzgerald (Actual Justice Warrior) (@IamSean90) April 12, 2023
Jones claimed she was let go from her job managing the state’s COVID-19 dashboard after she refused to manipulate the data. That turned out to be untrue. She was fired in May 2020 for unauthorized interviews with the press and insubordination.
“As Jones battled with the state in 2020, police executed a search warrant at her home as part of an investigation into a November 2020 unauthorized login into the Department of Health’s messaging system. An unidentified person gained access to that system and sent a message stating, ‘it’s time to speak up before another 17,000 people are dead. You know this is wrong. You don’t have to be a part of this. Be a hero. Speak out before it’s too late.’ Jones later turned herself in and posted bond. She is still facing felony charges for the incident,” WUSF reported at the time.
“The Department of Health has maintained Jones was fired for modifying data without input from agency epidemiologists or her supervisors. Christina Pushaw, DeSantis’ spokeswoman, was an early skeptic of Jones’ claims, publishing an article titled ‘The Florida COVID-19 Whistleblower saga is a big lie,’ on the site Human Events, calling Jones’ allegations into question,” the media outlet continued.
“In a response on twitter to another user, Pushaw said, ‘This is why the long-awaited conclusion of the Rebekah Jones story (she made it all up) actually matters so much. It was all partisan politics to certain DC & NYC media personalities, but in Florida, the conspiracy theory did actual harm (to apolitical people),'” WUSF further noted.
Jones also falsely accused DeSantis of ordering her 13-year-old son’s arrest according to Fox News. According to Check Your Fact, authorities arrested Jones’ son due to several posts allegedly threatening a school shooting.
Rebekah Jones: “Ron DeSantis had my son arrested!”
Reality: Rebekah Jones turned her son into the police after warrant issued for his arrest for threatening fellow students. pic.twitter.com/16ZWjZb1Wn
— Greg Price (@greg_price11) April 6, 2023
The disgruntled Democrat also made a false claim that authorities had executed a shock-and-awe raid on her family home, according to Mediaite.
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