It has always been the case that a paper will headline a damning take. Fact is, best I can tell from the interview and his words after, he did say such a thing, and I’m having difficulty even trying to imagine how it was taken out of context. That’s a live bomb, and you just don’t touch it. “We should have never taken that money” and then shut up.
Case in point: There are multiple twitter threads going around politicians saying things, but either recanting those later or being taken out of context.
A tweet doesn't do the justice. If Lessig wins it might help to lay the groundwork for some more nuanced digital ethics.