Nets Bemoan ‘Conservative Attacks,’ ‘Plagiarism Accusations’ Drove Harvard Prez Out

January 3rd, 2024 5:02 PM

The “big three” of ABC, CBS, and NBC gave full stories Tuesday night and Wednesday morning to the long-delayed resignation of Harvard University President Claudine Gay following her infamous congressional testimony refusing to condemn rampant anti-Semitism on her campus and a growing list of examples of plagiarism.

But, given Gay checks multiple boxes on a diversity bingo card, Harvard being a leftist shrine, and the work of our friends at the Washington Free Beacon, the three came to Gay’s rescue by downplaying the plagiarism as “accusations,” “allegations,” and “claims” and dismissing the efforts to hold her accountable as partisan actions by “conservative activists”.



ABC’s World News Tonight anchor David Muir sounded forlorn Tuesday:

The embattled president of Harvard, Claudine Gay abruptly resigning. It comes four weeks after her controversial testimony at a congressional hearing on anti-Semitism on campus. That led to new scrutiny and allegations of plagiarism on her part. Gay was only the second woman to hold the post, and the first person of color. Tonight, her six-month tenure is the shortest in Harvard's nearly 400-year history. 

Senior White House correspondent Selina Wang also went to bat for Gay, fretting she quit after “facing accusations of plagiarism and weeks of criticism for her congressional testimony on anti-Semitism and hate on campus.”

Referring to the aftermath of the hearing, Wang seemed to fret it wasn’t enough for “House members, donors, and prominent alumni” that “Gay apologized for what she called poor wording”.

As for the plagiarism, Wang downplayed it because “Harvard had previously ordered an investigation that revealed ‘a few instances of inadequate citation,’ and found “no violation of its standards for research misconduct.”

“[S]ome professors — they’re unhappy about how all of this went down, saying that the university is caving to Republican political pressure,” she concluded.

Skip ahead to ABC’s Good Morning America and Wang was back. After co-host Michael Strahan huffed about the “fallout” from “mounting plagiarism accusations and criticism” of Gay, Wang remarked “[t]his was a stunning fall from power.”

This time, Wang said Gay was beset with “a rocky” run as Harvard’s leader and a “flurry of controversies” who dealt with “conservative attacks” that “kept coming” despite “apologiz[ing]” for what happened on the Hill.

Not citing the Free Beacon or the great Chris Rufo of Manhattan Institute (whom CBS and NBC also left out), Wang did invoke far-left Harvard professor Ryan Enos, who said Gay being pushed out was “an attack on the independence of universities that shows universities in the United States can be bullied and attacked for political reasons.”

Wang closed by invoking Gay and Harvard making the opposition to her out to be racist: “She was Harvard’s first black president, and when announcing her resignation, the university said she’s been facing racist vitriol. The university condemning those personal attacks on her.”

Over on Tuesday’s NBC Nightly News, anchor Lester Holt bemoaned the “mounting accusations of plagiarism” while correspondent Erin McLaughlin huffed about how “[p]ressure grew in the following weeks” after the hearing “with Gay facing multiple allegations of plagiarism in her academic work.”

Hours later on Today, McLaughlin played up Gay’s skin color in her piece and described the “growing pressure” to resign as having come from unidentified forces and “alumni pulling back donations.”

Going lastly to CBS, fill-in Evening News anchor Major Garrett trotted out the qualifiers of “alleged mishandling of anti-Semitism” and “accusations of plagiarism” before congressional correspondent Nikole Killion said the plagiarism was merely “charges”.

CBS Mornings went even more toward Gay. Fill-in co-host Jericka Duncan grumbled about “strong reactions over the resignation” stemming from “controversial testimony” and “claims of plagiarism, allegations she strongly denies.”

Killion framed it as political, saying “conservative activists” drove her ouster (click “expand”):

KILLION: Some Republican lawmakers, including the speaker, say this was long overdue and Claudine Gay’s sudden departure makes her the shortest serving president and Harvard's history six months into her tenure.....Gay’s resignation comes nearly a month after she and the president of the University of Pennsylvania and the MIT faced widespread condemnation[.]


KILLION: Gay was the university’s first black president and she was criticized by many in the Jewish community for her response to anti-Semitism on campus after the Hamas attacks in Israel. She faced more scrutiny from donors and conservative activists following allegations of plagiarism in her dissertation and several articles, which he denied. She wrote, “it has been distressing to have doubt cast on my commitments to confronting hate and upholding scholarly rigor...and frightening to be attacked by threats fueled by racial animus.”

HARVARD PROFESSOR RYAN ENOS: This is higher education is being attacked by a mob rule and I think it’s something that we should be very wary of.