The Story Behind the Story: They Both Can’t Be Right

bsTonight is Megyn Kelly’s exclusive sit-down with the Duggars, and even before it airs it’s making news on CNN. Last night Don Lemon introduced CNN’s media guy Brian Stelter as having “some reporting behind the scenes” on how Megyn secured the interview:

BRIAN STELTER: What’s really interesting the back story here, why they’re deciding to talk to Megyn Kelly and who is helping them decide. We saw Mike Huckabee, the presidential candidate rush to the defense of the Duggars….The PR person that helps out Mike Huckabee is also helping out the Duggars. So, it’s really an example of the link or the connections that happen between the two. The name is Chad Gallagher, he’s the principal of Legacy Consulting. His PR. firm has been helping the Duggar’s try to handle these crises. They were instrumental in picking which network and which person, we got the first interview. Why this all matter? Well, it shows that the Duggars want to speak to their base. They want to speak to their Christian conservative base.

Megyn Kelly journalistically embodies the Christian conservative base? Has Mr. Stelter not been paying attention?

MEGYN KELLY: Well I do have some news for you before I let you go. We’re not only swearing. We’re drinking, we’re smoking, we’re having premarital sex with birth control before we go to work and sometimes boss around a bunch of men.

That bit of instant analysis leaves The Cable Gamer perplexed. But never mind; today we learn from Megyn Kelly herself how she got the interview, and it differs from Brian Stelter’s “reporting” on how it went down:

“There was no magic to it,” Kelly tells PEOPLE of how she secured the high-profile interview. “I approached them and made the argument that I would be the best person for them to sit down with. I told them the truth, which is that I will be tough, but I will be fair. I think they know that’s my reputation.”

Ms Kelly explained further:

Kelly said she landed the coveted conversation in a pretty straightforward manner: She approached the family and presented an argument for why “The Kelly File” was the best choice. “When I spoke with the Duggar family, I said, ‘I am going to ask you the tough questions,’” said Kelly, who had no prior relationship with the massive clan. “‘You will not be getting a pass on the tough questions. But I will be fair, and you will be permitted to answer and offer context. And it will not be a ‘gotcha’ or an attempt to bring down the Duggars … That is not my role.”

So which is it? Did Mike Huckabee’s PR guy play a key role in deciding “which network and which person” got the interview, as Brian Stelter claims? Was this Gallagher fellow Stelter’s source? Did Stelter have a source at all, or was his “reporting” more like connect-the-dots speculation never actually confirmed by the Duggar family? Did he talk to the Duggar family at all?

Megyn Kelly says she scored the exclusive by speaking to the family and winning them over. Brian Stelter’s scenario of how it happens credits a Huckabee PR guy with no mention of any Megyn Kelly role whatsoever. They both can’t be right.

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