SALT LAKE CITY — Social media theorists and media commenters are speculating on who wrote a New York Times op-ed that criticized President Donald Trump and his administration.
On Wednesday, The New York Times ran an op-ed from an anonymous writer with the headline, “I am part of the resistance inside the Trump Administration.”
The writer said he or she has worked for the president but the writer’s like-minded colleagues have vowed to thwart the president’s agenda.
President Donald Trump condemned the writer, saying he wants The New York Times to give up the writer.
TREASON?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 5, 2018
Does the so-called “Senior Administration Official” really exist, or is it just the Failing New York Times with another phony source? If the GUTLESS anonymous person does indeed exist, the Times must, for National Security purposes, turn him/her over to government at once!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 5, 2018
According to The Huffington Post, one word in the op-ed — “lodestar” — may offer a hint to who wrote the article.
In a paragraph praising the late Arizona Sen. John McCain, the op-ed writer wrote, “We may no longer have Senator McCain. But we will always have his example — a lodestar for restoring honor to public life and our national dialogue. Mr. Trump may fear such honorable men, but we should revere them.”
That word “lodestar” — which means “one that serves as an inspiration, model or guide,” according to Merriam-Webster — inspired social media members to hunt around the internet for which Trump administration members might use it. Online commentators found Vice President Mike Pence using the term.
The theory became so popular that “Pence,” “#lodestar,” “New York Times,” “#Anonymous” and “#NYTimesOpEd” were among the top trending hashtags Wednesday night.
Turns out Mike Pence can write a pretty okay op-ed; who knew?— Ross Douthat (@DouthatNYT) September 5, 2018
(This is a joke, for the record.)
OK, I'm calling it a day. Today's #LODESTAR episode was definitely one of the most thrilling West Wing episodes in months. Kudos to the script writers. (none of this is for real, right?)— Dirk Praet (@DPRamone) September 5, 2018
Mike pence is a better writer than I thought. https://t.co/FJKVeQeCuV— Molly Jong-Fast (@MollyJongFast) September 5, 2018
CNN’s Chris Cillizza theorized on 13 people who might be the author, one of whom is Pence. Other names included Kellyanne Conway and Jeff Sessions.
The op-ed came in the same week that details of journalist Bob Woodward’s new book, “Fear: Trump in the White House,” dropped across multiple news organizations. The book paints a rather negative view of the Trump administration, highlighting the chaos within the White House.