NY Times Claims Residents in GOP Convention Video Were Tricked Into Appearing, Despite Their Own Words

AP Photo/Richard Drew

 

It seems to be the fashion at The Paper of Record to believe their own headlines.

One of the more notable parallels at the two presidential conventions was to have people featured from the opposite party supporting the presidential candidates. The Democrats had a string of Never-Trump types, such as John Kasich speaking, as well as playing each night videos of citizens professing their party change as a result of Donald Trump. 

These digital testimonials arrived from the Republicans Voters Against Trump PAC, the rather tepid voting effort created by the vaunted minds from The Bulwark. These supposedly moving words of exodus from unprovable Republican ‘’voters’’ lost some of their impact when each night it was recognized that they repeated the same string of videos. Much like the final video wall of supporters waving at Kamala Harris and her running mate, after their speeches, it appears they could not find enough turncoats to fill four nights of evidence.

In kind the Republicans had their share of Democrats stating how they were going to support Trump in November, and the press has been dutiful in being dismissive with those examples after underscoring the drama of the GOPers backing Kamala. The New York Times is suggesting that one example from the Republicans was a falsified account. 

One segment played at the convention involved some NY City residents who are part of their tenants associations, arriving from Lynne Patton who is head of the New York office of the Housing and Urban Development division. They were making testimonials about the political realities they experienced. The four residents detailed how Mayor DeBlasio has been lax in his efforts and there was praise for how the President has been addressing their concerns.

(video cued to appropriate segment )

Now after the convention The Times has reached out to these residents and it reports that three of the participants are upset they were featured at the convention. Claims are made that they are not supportive of Trump and had been ‘’misled’’ about the purpose of the video.

“I am not a Trump supporter,” said one of the tenants, Claudia Perez. “I am not a supporter of his racist policies on immigration.’’ The four tenants in the public housing video were all interviewed on Friday by The New York Times. Three said they opposed President Trump and were misled about the video. The fourth, reached late Friday night, said she was a Trump backer and knew the purpose of the video.

Sounds as if there is a real scandal of subterfuge taking place here. Except.

There appears to be a case of backer’s remorse. The impression this report leaves is not one of being lied to by producers but of hearing pushback after the fact, or even contortion of events by the media. The four participants acknowledged they were made aware the video was made on behalf of the Republican Party, and all had been contacted by Patton. Three of the people are declaring they were not told they would be displayed at the convention, framing things that appear as if they were duped in appearing. You get a feel of the ensuing reactions caused as one of the participants stated she was confronted by a vendor with whom she works about the appearance.

The video does not suggest all four will be voting for President Trump, as they instead are discussing conditions they experienced in their experiences on a local level. The Times makes the claim that the participants had been tricked into appearing, despite the fact they all cite they were invited, and that Patton was involved. This claim of trickery also loses much of its venom as a result of one piece of evidence — their own words.

Carmen Quinones had strong words regarding Mayor DeBlasio, stating that he ‘’has made our lives here, and I think in every housing development, very uncomfortable.”

Claudia Perez went further, going beyond just criticizing the Mayor but giving praise to how Trump and HUD ‘’were bringing real solutions to a real problem.’’ She also said how much she appreciated not just the local office but that she was “very appreciative of this administration”.

Manny Martinez also mentioned the administration directly, as well as Lynne Patton, and he mentions how much funding they have been receiving as a result of the federal offices. ‘’Under the Trump administration the New York City Housing Authority has received an influx of cash that it had not seen since 1997.’’

Judy Smith, who states she is backing the President, was comfortable with the video and how it was used.

Of note is Ms. Quinonez and comments she made to the Times. She reiterates that she is a lifelong Democrat, something that was in fact displayed in the video segment. Her follow up words with the Times carries a curious comment. She continued to rail against DeBlasio’s inactivity, and then told the paper how she saw this opportunity for their benefit.

For me, this was not about party, but for us to make the national stage,” Ms. Quiñones tells the paper. ”They were the only ones that offered. My own party didn’t offer.”

Hard to parse that discrepancy in the parties treatment of their condition as her being ‘’tricked’’. Also of note is how she was under the impression that she could make her comments reach ‘’the national stage’’, if she was unaware her video would be played for the nation. The most revealing part of the Times tepid ‘’expose’’ is that, once again, the press is far more interested in fact-checking the GOP than anything that had been spoken during the Democrat convention.