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New York Times suspends White House reporter Glenn Thrush following accusations of sexually inappropriate behavior

  • The New York Times said on Monday that it suspended White House reporter Glenn Thrush following a report of sexually inappropriate behavior toward women.
  • The suspension is in response to allegations in a Vox article in which Vox editorial director Laura McGann says Thrush suddenly groped and kissed her in a bar five years ago.
  • McGann's article cites interviews with three other women who described similar incidents.
New York Times reporter Glenn Thrush works in the Brady Briefing Room after being excluded from a press gaggle by White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, on February 24, 2017 in Washington, DC.
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New York Times reporter Glenn Thrush works in the Brady Briefing Room after being excluded from a press gaggle by White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, on February 24, 2017 in Washington, DC.

The New York Times said on Monday that it suspended White House reporter Glenn Thrush following accusations of sexually inappropriate behavior toward women.

The suspension is in response to allegations in an article on the website Vox in which Vox editorial director Laura McGann accused Thrush of unwanted sexual contact in a bar. "[H]e caught me off guard, put his hand on my thigh, and suddenly started kissing me," she wrote.

She said the incident took place five years ago when the two journalists worked together at the website Politico.

Thrush, who could not immediately be reached by CNBC for comment, told Vox that he remembered the incident differently, according to the article.

McGann wrote that she had told "an experienced colleague" and "a very senior editor" at Politico about the incident. She cited in her article a spokesperson for Politico, Brad Dayspring, as saying no formal complaint had ever reached the general counsel's desk and that both the colleague and senior editor in question had left Politico years ago.

McGann, who told CNBC she had no comment beyond what was in the Vox story, wrote in the article that she interviewed approximately 40 people "in and around media" about Thrush.

She wrote that three other women — all young and early in their journalism careers — described incidents with Thrush that ranged "from unwanted groping and kissing to wet kisses out of nowhere to hazy sexual encounters that played out under the influence of alcohol. Each woman described feeling differently about these experiences: scared, violated, ashamed, weirded out. I was — and am — angry."

The Times called the alleged behavior "very concerning" in a statement.

"We intend to fully investigate and while we do, Glenn will be suspended."

The Times said Thrush told the paper he planned to enter a substance abuse program. The Vox article quoted an email from Thrush in which he said he "will soon begin out-patient treatment for alcoholism." All four of the incidents alleged in the Vox article involved alcohol.

Thrush was one of six reporters covering the White House full time. He was writing a book with fellow reporter Maggie Haberman.

Thrush's sometimes caustic interactions with former White House press secretary Sean Spicer have been portrayed in satirical skits on NBC's "Saturday Night Live."

Disclosure: NBCUniversal, parent of CNBC and NBC, is an investor in Vox Media.

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