The New York Times this morning published one heckuva puff piece for Sarah Huckabee Sanders’ 2022 gubernatorial candidacy. Somewhere, Tim Griffin is fuming.

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It is such a puff piece (and reminiscent of when a Key White House correspondent rose to Sanders’ defense when she was the butt of jokes at a correspondents’ dinner) that many couldn’t help wonder if it was payback for source services. Perheps not. Sanders has ever — and in this article — been loyal to Donald Trump.

Sanders says she feels “called” to run for statewide office, though not ready to declare candidacy just yet. A mission from God, I guess, just like the Blues Brothers.

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The piece devotes a couple of paragraphs to her clashes with the press corps. But it finds an Arkansas Republican who says loves her for her honesty. It details her travails as press secretary — having Secret Service protection, being booted from a restaurant in Virginia. Then the money quote that brought wide derision on social media:

 “I don’t like being called a liar,” she said. “The other stuff bothered me far less.”

The comment at the top happens to be from a former New York Times reporter. FWIW: His daughter, Maggie, still covers the White House.

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PS: Andrew DeMillo of AP also has profiled Sanders and her image-building appearances before Republican crowds. He quotes a state legislator who notes she’ll need to start talking at some point about relevant state issues, noticeably absent from her speeches currently.