National Review Retracts Kat Timpf’s Title IX Article For Leaving Out ‘Relevant Details’

National Review Retracts Kat Timpf’s Title IX Article For Leaving Out ‘Relevant Details’

Conservative publication National Review pulled down an article about a Title IX violation hours after publication following intense backlash from journalists and observers who noted that the writer had misrepresented the facts of the case.

Early on Friday, the right-wing outlet published a piece by Fox News contributor and National Review Online reporter Kat Timpf originally titled ‘Student Found to Have Violated Title IX By Asking Another Student Out on a Date.’ The article argued that a University of Missouri student had violated Title IX because he’d “asked another student out on a date and is physically larger than he is.”

Throughout the piece, Timpf made the case that this was clearly a “total abuse and misuse of Title IX” as the student was being punished for asking out a woman who didn’t want to go out on a date and being larger than her, his physical size seen as a “violation-worthy power imbalance.”

Unfortunately, it would appear that Timpf didn’t read the document she linked to from the male student’s lawyer — not a deposition as she originally noted in her piece — that revealed that he had stalked and harassed the female student over a period of months. Mind you, this is from the man’s legal team in his legal fight against the school over the violation, and it even points out he was stalking the woman.

Shortly after the piece went live, Andrew Fleischman took to Twitter to give a breakdown of everything Timpf had gotten wrong in her article.

After being called out by Reason’s Elizabeth Nolan Brown, who called her piece “disgustingly disingenuous,” Timpf said she was updating the article.

The update, however, merely changed some wording in the headline, changed the description of the plaintiff’s filing, and included the following editor’s note:

This article and its headline have been updated since its original publication to reflect that the Title IX violation allegation was only in part due to the asking of another student out on a date.

With critics pointing out that the minor changes weren’t enough to save the article, National Review decided to delete its tweet linking to the piece and retract the article entirely. The magazine provided the following explanation for the retraction.

Editor’s Note: This article and its headline originally stated that a male student at the University of Missouri was found in violation of Title IX because he asked a female student on a date and “was perceived as having power over her.” The article accurately quoted the deposition of the Title IX case, but it left out relevant details. In fact, the male student had made repeated, unwelcome advances toward the female student and was found in violation of Title IX for stalking her. He is suing the university and alleging that its Title IX office engaged in arbitrary enforcement and racial discrimination, but his lawsuit does not contest the fact pattern left out of this article. We are retracting the article and we regret the error. The article, including the the initial editor’s note, is below.

After the retraction, trial lawyer Max Kennerly had a question for the National Review.

“Maybe they’ll concede it’s good Title IX prohibits stalking?” Kennerly pondered. “Or maybe not.”

Justin Baragona

Justin Baragona is the founder/publisher of Contemptor and a contributor to The Daily Beast. He was previously the Cable News Correspondent for Mediaite and prior to starting Contemptor, he worked on the editorial staff of PoliticusUSA. During that time, he had his work quoted by USA Today and BBC News, among others. Justin began his published career as a political writer for 411Mania. He resides in St. Louis, MO with his wife and pets.