New York Times opinion editor James Bennet resigns following uproar over Tom Cotton op-ed

After publishing Cotton's op-ed this week, the Times said it should not have published the piece.

Last Updated:
June 8, 2020 - 2:33pm

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New York Times Opinion Editor James Bennet has resigned from his position following a rocky few days at one of the nation's most renowned media institutions, after the publication of an Op-Ed by Arkansas Republican Sen. Tom Cotton.

“Last week we saw a significant breakdown in our editing processes, not the first we’ve experienced in recent years,” said New York Times publisher A. G. Sulzberger in a note to the staff, according to the Times. “Both of us concluded that James would not be able to lead the team through the next leg of change that is required,” he said in an interview, the outlet reported.

"One thing above all else will restore order to our streets: an overwhelming show of force to disperse, detain and ultimately deter lawbreakers," Cotton wrote in the piece that sparked outrage. 

Many New York Times staffers expressed their opposition to the publication of the senator's piece on social media.

The Times noted that hundreds of staffers signed a letter conveying their displeasure: "The letter argued that Mr. Cotton’s essay contained misinformation, such as his depiction of the role of “antifa” in the protests," the outlet reported.

A June 5 editors' note posted on top of the story on the New York Times website says the story should never have been published.

"Jim Dao, the deputy editorial page editor who oversees Op-Eds, is stepping down from his position, which was on the Times masthead, and taking a new job in the newsroom, Mr. Sulzberger said," the New York Times announced.

The Times's Cliff Levy responded to a tweet from President Trump about Bennet's departure.

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