Elon Musk’s latest “Twitter Files” drop has left more liberal journalists fuming, after the new Twitter owner unexpectedly fired former FBI General Counsel James Baker from the company in developments revealed Tuesday.
Substack journalist Matt Taibbi announced that the drop of internal documents was delayed due to discovering that Baker had been “vetting” the documents beforehand, without Musk’s knowledge.
The former FBI official expressed support for censoring the Hunter Biden laptop story in the first set of Twitter Files Taibbi released last week. While at the bureau, Baker worked under former Director James Comey and played a key role in the Russia collusion investigation involving Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign.
Musk wrote on Twitter, “In light of concerns about Baker’s possible role in suppression of information important to the public dialogue, he was exited from Twitter today.”
The news prompted a variety of reactions online. Conservative pundits cheered Musk for “cleaning house” while Republicans called for Baker to testify before Congress.
But some liberal media figures saw nothing wrong with Baker’s involvement in looking over the documents that detailed how the company chose to suppress the Hunter Biden laptop story in October of 2020.
Mother Jones reporter Dan Friedman suggested Baker was “just a guy with a tough job” who was unfairly maligned.
“Jim Baker was involved in various controversies because he was the FBI’s general counsel. Is he “something of a Zelig” or just a guy with a tough job? Baker has been the subject of mch innuedo like this, but not been found to have leaked anything.”
Former New Yorker journalist James Surowiecki mocked the idea he shouldn’t have been involved.
“A top lawyer at Twitter vetted the public release of files that contained material that might expose the company to legal liability, including with regard to privacy issues. That’s really scandalous,” he tweeted.
NBC News reporter Ben Collins also took the focus off Baker, writing, “The scandal here is that Elon Musk discovered who his company’s deputy general counsel was six weeks after he purchased it.”
New Republic reporter Matt Ford knocked the story as a non-scandal.
“Twitter’s general counsel had the unmitigated gall to review internal documents before they were publicly released,” he tweeted.
Defense attorney and Substack author Ken White also downplayed the news, writing in a Twitter thread, “Wow this Jim Baker narrative from Musk & Taibbi is desperate and dumb.”
In follow-up tweets he slammed Musk’s “idiot audience” and mocked the latest news as “particularly dumb.”
“But today’s new mini-update to the ‘scandal’ is particularly dumb. Oh, in-house general counsel looked through materials about a controversy before they were sent to the press? SHOCKING,” he wrote.
Liberal news outlets who denounced the Hunter Biden laptop as Russian disinformation before the 2020 election have paid little attention to the latest bombshell Twitter developments.