Michigan reporter fired after voicemail bashing John James

Posted at 3:38 PM, Nov 06, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-06 17:39:48-05

A Michigan newspaper reporter has been fired after being caught on a voicemail saying she hopes Republican Senatorial Candidate John James would lose the election.

In a statement posted on the Huron Daily Tribune website, Editor Kate Hessling said that reporter Brenda Battel was fired Monday night after the voicemail. The newspaper is in Bad Axe, Mich.

Battel called the James campaign requesting an interview, and didn't hang up the phone.

In a video posted by the James campaign, Battel is heard saying, "Man, if he beats her...Jesus! F***ing John James. That would suck. I don't think it's going to happen though."

Hessling confirmed in the post on the website that the voicemail was legitimate.

"I have listened to the voicemail left by Brenda Battel to Mr. James' campaign, and find no reason to defend this behavior. Brenda Battel's employment has been immediately terminated," Hessling said. "The Huron Daily Tribune sincerely apologizes to Mr. James and to the public. These statements do not represent the views of the Tribune as a whole, nor do they reflect the actions of a responsible journalist."