Journalist Accuses Las Vegas Sun Of Pulling Column Critical Of Harry Reid

04/02/2015 02:29 pm ET | Updated Apr 02, 2015

In the wake of Harry Reid's recent interview on CNN, in which the Senate minority leader seemed unapologetic for erroneously accusing Mitt Romney of tax evasion in 2012, political journalist Jon Ralston published a scathing column on Reid on his website Wednesday.

The piece slammed Reid's "ruthless, Machiavellian side," calling the senator "both fearless and shameless," while likening his tactics to Joseph McCarthy and the Salem witch trials.

The column was not written in light of Reid's demeanor on CNN earlier this week, however, but three years ago during the 2012 presidential election. Ralston claims Reid's hometown paper, The Las Vegas Sun, killed the piece because of ties between the senator and Brian Greenspun, the paper's CEO, publisher and editor.

"Now that CNN's Dana Bash has found Harry Reid to be unrepentant about his Mitt Romney tax lies, it's finally time to publish a column I wrote contemporaneously with the Nevada senator's McCarthy-like tactic during the 2012 campaign," the introduction to the piece reads. "The column was never published because Las Vegas Sun Editor Brian Greenspun attempted to protect his friend, Reid, from the criticism."

"I never wrote for the Sun again," he continued.

Ralston, who now serves as a contributing editor at Politico, joined MSNBC's "Morning Joe" Thursday to elaborate on his grievances with Reid and recount a conversation he had with Greenspun after the column was killed. He claimed that Greenspun had altered a headline for another one of his columns on Reid, and that the editor also interfered with the work of other staffers at the paper.

"I basically said, 'What are you doing?'" he told co-host Joe Scarborough. "And I used some words I'm not going to use this early in the morning, Joe, because I was furious. It had never happened to me before, there was no reason to kill the column."

"His justification was totally lame. He didn't like the word McCarthy, which, of course, was totally appropriate," he continued, adding that Greenspun had referenced McCarthy in a column about a Republican. "It was just obvious that he was doing this to help his friend Harry Reid."

The Huffington Post has reached out to Brian Greenspun for comment, and will update this post if and when a response is received.

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