The unidentified senior White House official who eventually wrote the anonymous op-ed in the New York Times reached out to opinion editor Jim Dao several days ago through an intermediary, according to a Wednesday CNN report.
Dao added that people at the Times also communicated with the official “directly,” but declined to give more details, saying that a “very small number” of people at the Times know the person’s identity and that “special precautions” are being taken to keep the person’s name a secret.
Per CNN, Dao also said that the piece was lightly edited for style and clarity, but that no effort was made to obscure the author’s voice or writing style. He also added that, to his knowledge, the timing of the official’s reaching out in relation to the publishing of excerpts from Bob Woodward’s White House memoir is a coincidence.
Though it is a rare practice, this is not the first time the Times has published an anonymous op-ed. According to CNN, the most recent piece of this kind was written by an asylum seeker fleeing El Salvador.
Dao did not rule out publishing another such piece from a Trump administration official in the future.