After joining with the rest of the liberal media to try and defeat Donald Trump, New York Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger issued a memo to the newsroom via email that President-elect Donald Trump would be covered “fairly” and “without bias:”
As we close one of the most momentous weeks in our nation’s recent history, let’s pause for a moment on those famous instructions that Adolph S. Ochs left for us: to cover the news without fear or favor.
As Donald Trump begins preparing for his new administration, those words have rarely felt more important.
The Times is certainly not afraid — our investigative report has demonstrated our courage many times over. That fearless, hard-fought journalism will always stand as the backbone of The Times, no matter the President.
But we also approach the incoming Trump administration without bias. We will cover his policies and his agenda fairly. We will bring expert analysis and thoughtful commentary to the changes we see in government, and to their ramifications on the ground.
We will look within and beyond Washington to explore the roots of the anger that has roiled red and blue America. If many Americans no longer seem to understand each other, let’s make it our job to interpret and explain.
Our predecessors founded our singular newspaper for just this moment — to serve as a watchdog to the powerful; and to hold mighty institutions accountable, without fear or favor. We are more than ready to fulfill that promise.
Together, we have built the world’s best digital newsroom and it, too, was made for just this moment. We will chronicle the new administration with a lightning-fast report that features stories told in every medium and on every platform.
Here is what we have all dedicated our careers to: Going after the biggest stories in the world, and telling them as ambitiously as possible.
Get some rest this weekend. We have lots to do.
Sulzberger’s memo came just two days after the paper’s public editor Liz Spayd suggested that the Times might not have missed so badly on their election predictions had they spent more time in Red America, instead of just focusing on sound-bite coverage of the Trump campaign.
Later on Friday, Sulzberger, along with executive editor Dean Baquet, issued a letter to readers telling them that the Times will “rededicate” itself to honest journalism and asking for their continued support:
To our readers,
When the biggest political story of the year reached a dramatic and unexpected climax late Tuesday night, our newsroom turned on a dime and did what it has done for nearly two years — cover the 2016 election with agility and creativity.
After such an erratic and unpredictable election there are inevitable questions: Did Donald Trump’s sheer unconventionality lead us and other news outlets to underestimate his support among American voters? What forces and strains in America drove this divisive election and outcome? Most important, how will a president who remains a largely enigmatic figure actually govern when he takes office?
As we reflect on this week’s momentous result, and the months of reporting and polling that preceded it, we aim to rededicate ourselves to the fundamental mission of Times journalism. That is to report America and the world honestly, without fear or favor, striving always to understand and reflect all political perspectives and life experiences in the stories that we bring to you. It is also to hold power to account, impartially and unflinchingly. We believe we reported on both candidates fairly during the presidential campaign. You can rely on The New York Times to bring the same fairness, the same level of scrutiny, the same independence to our coverage of the new president and his team.
We cannot deliver the independent, original journalism for which we are known without the loyalty of our subscribers. We want to take this opportunity, on behalf of all Times journalists, to thank you for that loyalty.
Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr.
Trump won’t be inaugurated until January 20, so the Times still has a couple of months before they reform and start their “honest” coverage of the next president.