Ok I am stupid.
What does the lawyer mena when she says NBC spiked the story?
did NBC report Hicks was a Democrat?
How does that spike the story?
sorry to be so stupid
Refused to publish the fact.
As someone already said, to spike a story is to hide or just ignore it.
My understanding is that waaaaay back when newspapers were the main source of fast news (i.e., before TV or the Internet), reporters would find themselves adrift in sheets and sheets of paper all over the place as they tried to pull together the pieces of a fast-moving story. So some smart person put a spike on his desk, and whenever he was done with a particular piece of paper, he’d jam it onto the spike. (I say “he” because in those days there were few female reporters.) When the spike was full of paper, an office boy making the rounds to clean up the place would take all the pieces of paper at once and throw them away.
So to “spike” a story intentionally was to put in on the throwing-away spike without dealing with it. To ignore it.
(If there are any old-timey journalists who have a better version of this story, please feel free to correct this!)