One would think this scenario provides one of the more clearly defined examples of a conflict of interest to avoid: Say you happen to be Ken Kurson, the editor of the New York Observer. Say that you’re handed a draft copy of a speech that belongs to a current presidential candidate, Donald Trump, for example, who plans to deliver this speech at the AIPAC conference. Say that you’re given this speech not for reporting purposes, but rather, for your input.
What, as the editor of a paper that covers politics, do you do?
Since it was revealed in Gabriel Sherman‘s New York magazine profile of Donald Trump that Kurson went with the providing-input-and-not-disclosing-it option, the Observer has decided to try something different from now on.
From senior politics editor Jill Jorgensen, in a statement provided to the Huffington Post:
A recent report about Observer Editor Ken Kurson’s input on a speech delivered by Donald Trump before AIPAC has resulted in new scrutiny of our newspaper’s relationship with Mr. Trump, who is the father-in-law of our publisher, Jared Kushner. Going forward, there will be no input whatsoever on the campaign from Mr. Kurson or anyone on the editorial side of the Observer.