Gawker’s John Cook Guts McKay Coppins’ BuzzFeed Story on Marco Rubio

McKay Coppins, BuzzFeed’s political editor, is no stranger to haters among his New York media compatriots.

In January, the bespectacled politics wonk drew ire from Complex’s Foster Kamer and Reuters social media editor Anthony De Rosa over a story hedging their apparent-newfound love of guns on a photo from a shooting range.

Now, he’s in Gawker editor John Cook’s crosshairs over a story that seems to have a similarly flimsy premise.

Entitled “The Endless Vetting of Marco Rubio,” Coppins’ post details weaved into the 555 pages of a Democratic opposition research firms book on the Republican Party’s rising star from Florida. The question he’s left with: “What element of his time in Florida politics will come back to haunt him?”

“Hmmm, yes, what element, exactly? Well, Coppins doesn’t quite say,” Cook wrote with that biting tone Gawker usually saves for Politi — er, “The Politico.”

He continues:

Well. Whatever it is, Coppins writes, it has caused some politicos to “speculate that the Senator’s pristine political brand will collapse under the weight of national scrutiny.” It has sustained a “vague, undying notion that he could be hiding a career-ending secret.” It feeds an “unshakable speculation about Rubio’s private life and professional past.” There is a “drip-drip of juicy new details about his life over the past couple of years [that] has only served to reinforce the theory that there’s a game-changer still waiting to be discovered.” There are “plenty of tantalizing rumors about Rubio,” but “none of them could be confirmed.”

We all know what respectable reporters do with unconfirmed rumors: They write blog posts about them!

FishbowlNY emailed Coppins for a response, but he has not replied. We’ll update this post when/if he does.

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Publish date: April 16, 2013 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT