Photo: Scott Eisen / Getty

Trump’s open opposition to the mainstream press has forced many in the institution to rethink the way they approach their work. While it’s an awful cause, the effect is good, including deep soul-searching about the nature of access journalism and a flood of public funding toward institutions like ProPublica, the New York Times, and the Committee to Protect Journalists. CNN’s Jake Tapper is the latest to fall in the crosshairs, but he has found an interesting way to respond. Tapper had a number of hits throughout the increasingly volatile election season, including the time he asked Trump 23 times if his statements about Gonzalo Curiel were racist (they were) and the time John Podesta’s leaked email accused Tapper of being “a dick” (he is). An article earlier this week in Slate praised Tapper’s “performative neutrality” as an old-fashioned but uniquely timely antidote to Trump’s bellicosity:

Since Trump’s election, Tapper’s fiery but establishment-entrenched objectivity has morphed into a kind of radicalism, as the establishment, or at least the president, cuts ties with the truth. At a moment in which believing in “facts” is a partisan stance, Tapper has become an occasional liberal hero and poster boy, in a nonpartisan patterned tie, of the resistance.

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Last night, he exhibited that exact characteristic marshaling forth a series of facts about Trump’s anti-Muslim rhetoric to (who else?) Kellyanne Conway, who did the thing she does where you can tell she doesn’t have an answer so she just sort of cycles through words for a while, eventually losing steam and, with a sigh, one more portion of her soul. After which Tapper asked her the same question, again. Ruthless:

Afterward, Axios reported that Jake Tapper has become the target of Republican operatives who want to “destroy him,” which is par for the course in the warzone that is journalistic objectivity in the Trump era. Tapper has gleefully responded by offering up his dirtiest secrets on Twitter so as to counteract the advance of these ominous spooks. The skeletons in his closet sound are dark, indeed.

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This one cannot be true:

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Okay, maybe it is:

Feel free to search #Tapperdirtfile on Twitter, where various eggs and people named “Deplora-Bill” are accusing him of being “fake news.” We eagerly await Tomi Lahren’s scintillating takedown of the sober, reputable broadcaster as a “loser.”

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