Domenech Admits to Plagiarism

Hours after offering his defense against charges of plagiarism, conservative blogger Ben Domenech last night apologized for using the work of other writers without attribution. The statement came at the end of whirlwind day for Domenech, who resigned from his job as a blogger for washingtonpost.com midday Friday amid mounting criticism about instances of plagiarism.

“I want to apologize to National Review Online, my friends and colleagues here at RedState, and to any others that have been affected over the past few days,” Domenech wrote in a post on RedState.com late last night. “I also want to apologize to my previous editors and writers whose work I used inappropriately and without attribution. There is no excuse for this—nor is there an excuse for any obfuscation in my earlier statement.”

Just hours earlier, Domenech told HUMAN EVENTS he would answer his critics and confront their charges. He also called the editors at washingtonpost.com “fools” for failing to anticipate the onslaught of attacks from the left about his new “Red America” blog.

“The idea that the attack machine has gotten to the level where they dig back to your freshman year of college, when you’re 17, and say, ‘Hey, this guy should have been thinking about the authority of what he was writing the same way that people do at the New York Times,’ then, I mean, it’s idiotic,” Domenech said in an exclusive interview with HUMAN EVENTS posted Friday afternoon. “I certainly was sloppier than I should have been, but the sense that I ever felt this was significant or this was dangerous or that there was ever anything to come out of it is just ridiculous.”

Domenech posted a lengthy rebuttal on RedState.com countering the charges of plagiarism shortly after his interview with HUMAN EVENTS.

“I know that charges of plagiarism are serious,” Domenech wrote. “While I am not a journalist, I have, myself, written more than one thing that has been plagiarized in the past. But these charges have also served to create an atmosphere where no matter what is said on my Red America blog, leftists will focus on things with my byline from when I was a teenager.”

But late last night, he responded again, this time under the headline “Contrition.” The short post stated:

I want to apologize to National Review Online, my friends and colleagues here at RedState, and to any others that have been affected over the past few days. I also want to apologize to my previous editors and writers whose work I used inappropriately and without attribution. There is no excuse for this – nor is there an excuse for any obfuscation in my earlier statement.

I hope that nothing I’ve done as a teenager or in my professional life will reflect badly on the movement and principles I believe in.

I’m deeply grateful for the love and encouragment (sic) of all those around me. And although I may not deserve such support, it makes it that much more humbling at a time like this. I’m a young man, and I hope that in time that I can earn a measure of the respect that you have given me.

Regards,
Ben

Meanwhile, National Review Online has launched an investigation of articles it published by Domenech. The conservative magazine has apologized to its readers for articles in which Domenech borrowed from other writers.

Before the eruption of the plagiarism scandal, Domenech had met with Regnery Publishing senior management who determined that Domenech’s blogging duties interfered with his duties as an editor with Regnery (a sister company to HUMAN EVENTS). Harry Crocker, vice president and executive editor of Regnery, told HUMAN EVENTS that Domenech resigned on Tuesday, March 21. He remained on staff while finishing a few short-term projects.


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