Fact-Check: Nina Jankowicz v. Fox News
Nina Jankowicz, who was to have run the now “paused” project of the Department of Homeland Security called the Disinformation Governance Board, is suing Fox News. Since I do not want to be sued by Nina Jankowicz, this article will be built around direct quotes of official sources, and her own writings and statements.
First, from the complaint, a list of insults, not to be read for amusement:
By turns, Fox described Jankowicz as moronic, an embarrassment to her parents and employers, and a “self-obsessed social media neophyte.” Hosts and commentators referred to Jankowicz as, inter alia, “low I.Q,” “illiterate,” “Miss TikTok meets America’s Got No Talent,” “disinfo overlord,” “disinformation czaress,” “minister of truth,” “Scary Poppins,” a “useful idiot,” “janko-half-witz,” a “lunatic,” and “the wicked witch.”
In case you were unable to grasp that text clearly, here is an audio version, read by a machine with a pleasant British accent:
If you’re still left wanting, here is my video interpretation of the text, read with a mouthful of jellybeans:
Further down, the complaint read:
The story Fox fabricated about Jankowicz sprang from the creation of a government entity—the Disinformation Governance Board (the “Board”)— nested in the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”), and from Jankowicz’s appointment as the Board’s Executive Director. But the Board was an internal working group with no operating authority or capability. The Board had no ability to intervene, respond to, or prevent the spread of disinformation…
On June 7, 2022, Senators Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Josh Hawley of Missouri sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, requesting information about the Disinformation Governance Board. As a result of that letter, the charter of the DGB was made public.
With both the complaint and the charter in hand, we can compare some statements:
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