Sunday night, Buzzfeed News reported that Michelle Fields and Ben Shapiro had resigned from Breitbart News, effective immediately. In her statement to the press, Ms. Fields wrote “Today I informed the management at Breitbart News of my immediate resignation,” Fields said in a statement sent to BuzzFeed News. “I do not believe Breitbart News has adequately stood by me during the events of the past week and because of that I believe it is now best for us to part ways.”
Ben Shapiro, the only person from Breitbart News that fought for Ms. Fields, issued a statement saying “Andrew’s life mission has been betrayed. Indeed, Breitbart News, under the chairmanship of Steve Bannon, has put a stake through the heart of Andrew’s legacy. In my opinion, Steve Bannon is a bully, and has sold out Andrew’s mission in order to back another bully, Donald Trump; he has shaped the company into Trump’s personal Pravda, to the extent that he abandoned and undercut his own reporter, Breitbart News’ Michelle Fields, in order to protect Trump’s bully campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, who allegedly assaulted Michelle.”
Andrew Breitbart became famous for standing up to bullies. He stood up to ACORN. He stood up to Anthony Wiener, too. He stood up to unions that threatened his life on camera. It isn’t a stretch to think that Andrew wouldn’t have hesitated in supporting Michelle Fields even if it meant standing up to Donald Trump and Corey Lewandowski. In fact, Andrew Breitbart’s history showed that, the bigger the bully, the more fearless Andrew got. That isn’t speculation, either.
When Andrew Breitbart took on ACORN, he spoke with the father of Hanna Giles. He said that they talked for 4 hours.
I talked with Doug Giles and he didn’t know me from Adam. I talked with him for about 4 hours on the phone in Quincy, IL. I get this phone call “This is my daughter. I’m trusting you with her.” I go “I get it, sir. I’m gonna treat her like she’s my daughter.”
While Hanna Giles and James O’Keefe accumulated video of ACORN’s corrupt activities, Andrew had their back. Eventually, O’Keefe and Ms. Giles exposed ACORN for the corrupt organization they’d always been. Less than a year later, ACORN had closed its doors.
That’s quite the contrast with Breitbart News senior editor-at-large Joel Pollak ordering staffers to stop defending Ms. Fields:
“STOP tweeting about the story. Stop speculating about the story,” Pollak told staffers in one message, and reminded them that “you were given explicit instructions.”
“You may wish to defend your colleague, and that is commendable — but keep in mind that when you do so, you are also putting other colleagues under direct public pressure, so you are actually hurting some to help another,” Pollak said in one of the chats. “That is why we have to be patient, and coordinate our responses.”
When staffer Brandon Darby wrote that Lewandowski’s behavior was “a declaration of war” and “silence is abandoning our team member,” Pollak responded, “In war, we wait for orders that are based on a careful plan. So wait.”
It’s understatement to say that this isn’t a day that clothes Breitbart News in glory.