The Brawler noted more than two years ago, in a different context, that Jessica McBride doesn't do apologies. She would later demonstrate that she was capable of launching hysterical attacks and even drop the "I'm married to a lawyer" threat.
Her "statement" on the affair fits in perfectly with that template: Racked prose, self-righteous indignation, no public acknowledgment of the feelings of others, and vituperation.
As Dan Bice notes in his story:
Unlike Flynn, she offered no apologies for the liaison, though she said she has "addressed the relationship with those who need to know the details." She is married to former Waukesha County District Attorney Paul Bucher, an unsuccessful candidate for attorney general in 2006.
Overall, the tone of Flynn's statement was contrite, whereas McBride's was combative.
McBride is trying to cover her journalistic ethics bonafides by maintaining that the story was written and published before the affair began. So how could the affair have tainted her coverage? So how can Jessica be unethical?
Some of Jessica's more locquacious defenders are making the same point.
Unfortunately this explanation fails.
Now, having feelings for Flynn as she wrote the story surely isn't an ethical violation. If signals were being sent and received of the possibility of a future relationship, that's a different matter.
And while Jessica says she only met with and interviewed Flynn once, that doesn't preclude communication by phone or email that may have encouraged such a future relatonship. Indeed, in an embarrassing email from Flynn that McBride includes in her statement, Flynn says "let's schedule that coffee!" (Jessica doesn't do Ed Flynn any favors in disclosing that email.) The note suggests some previous communication with the intent of a future meeting.
But all that's parsing. The real reason that Jessica fails as an ethical journalist is found in these lines from her statement:
"At the time of the Brocach's meeting in May," her statement says, "I was an academic who no longer covered Flynn and would not ever do so again."
Actually, as Folkbum pointed out previously, at the time of the Brocach's meeting Jessica was a journalist whose specialty was covering crime and police issues. As previously noted, her May30 column in the Waukesha Freeman lamented how the reporting of traffic stop data would burden cops.
Jessica can't say categorically that she never again would have covered Flynn (she won't now, obviously) or cover someone whose interests conflicted with Flynn's. Indeed, given the prominence of her Milwaukee Magazine piece, she would be seen as an expert on all things Flynn.
As Charlie Sykes noted on his show, if you're covering the circus you don't blank the elephants. That's a fairly clear rule that one would expect a journalism teacher to know.
Just in: What are the ethical implications of the top cop barring a reporter from entering a press conference for fear of embarrassing questions?
Just in: Heartland Hollar previously noted "McBride's bizarre, no apology statement."
Just in: What does Randy Koschnick think?