Speed Reads

Harvey Weinstein

Rachel Maddow asks Ronan Farrow why her own employer took a pass on his Harvey Weinstein exposé

On Tuesday, The New Yorker published its own exposé on allegations of sexual harassment and rape against Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein, following a blockbuster report in The New York Times. The New Yorker article was reported by NBC News contributor Ronan Farrow, and NBC had the story in hand as recently as August, including "damning audio" of Weinstein apparently confessing to groping Italian model Ambra Battilana Gutierrez's breasts, HuffPost reports, but NBC had undisclosed "concerns related to the story's sourcing."

On her MSNBC show Tuesday night, Rachel Maddow asked Farrow point-blank, "Why did you end up publishing this story for The New Yorker and not for NBC News?" "Look, you would have to ask NBC and NBC executives," Farrow said, but "I will say that over many years, many news organizations have circled this story and faced a great deal of pressure in doing so." Weinstein personally threatened to sue him while he was working on the report, Farrow said, adding that his story was clearly "reportable" when NBC had it.

The inference is that NBC News — which let The Washington Post scoop its own Donald Trump Access Hollywood video a year ago — knew about Weinstein and didn't have the courage to take him on. Clearly, at least one part of NBC knew about Weinstein's reputation as far back as this 2012 episode of 30 Rock.

"I'm not afraid of anyone in show business," Jane Krakowski's Jenna tells Tracy Morgan, after he warns her about tussling with Weird Al Yankovich. "I turned down intercourse with Harvey Weinstein on no less than three occasions — out of five."