Come, I will hide nothing from you: when it comes to the Adventures of Bob Menendez, it is my suspicion that the hookers will turn out to be the least important, yet most enticing, part of the story. I am reasonably confident that Menendez availed himself of foreign prostitutes; I am neutral on whether one of them was legal by the standards of the Dominican Republic, and it would not break my heart to hear that Bob Menendez actually has enough couth and self-control to at least make sure that the girls he hires are adults. And if the whole hooker thing turns out to be false, a brutally pragmatic view of the situation would suggest that at this point it doesn’t matter: Menendez’s ties to Florida political contributor Salomon Melgen are now out, and not shaping up well under scrutiny.
None of this should be taken as an indication that the Washington Post didn’t screw up royally, here.
The Washington Post mistook one prostitute for another Monday in a report that initially seemed to debunk a November 2012 Daily Caller exposé of New Jersey Democratic Senator Bob Menendez.
…the Post reported that de los Santos claimed she implicated Menendez, his long-time donor Dr. Salomon Melgen, “and prominent Dominican lawyer Vinicio Castillo Selmán [sic], Melgen’s cousin, in hiring prostitutes.”
But Castillo Semán was not identified at any point during TheDC’s video interviews. His name first surfaced nearly three months later, in a written testimonial from a prostitute that appeared among emails and other records placed online by a whistle-blower calling himself Peter Williams.
Couple that with the minor detail that the video footage pretty clearly shows that the interviewees knew that they were being taped by a news organization… well. It must be nice for the Washington Post to have all those editors and fact-checkers on hand to test out stories. A shame that they couldn’t find an intern to watch the footage, though.