New York Daily News reporter Dan Friedman's said an offhand joke he made about connections between Chuck Hagel and Hamas was taken seriously by conservative news outlets, which then accused the Secretary of Defense nominee of a cover-up.
In an op-ed in the Daily News, the reporter said he called a Republican congressional aide to ask about any controversial groups from which Hagel might have received speaking fees. He made up a couple of fake organizations, he said, as a joke.
"Hagel was in hot water for alleged hostility to Israel," Friedman wrote. "So, I asked my source, had Hagel given a speech to, say, the 'Junior League of Hezbollah, in France'? And: What about 'Friends of Hamas'?"
He then followed up with his source, who didn't respond. But the next day, Feb. 7, Breitbart.com posted the headline: "SECRET HAGEL DONOR?: WHITE HOUSE SPOX DUCKS QUESTION ON ''FRIENDS OF HAMAS.'"
TVNL Comment: Republicans are the gift that just keeps on giving....