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CNN anchor Chris Cuomo is attracting attention from the journalism trade after the NY Attorney General’s office revealed that he was actively working to help his brother, Andrew Cuomo, counter sexual harassment scandals against him.
According to details from the investigation, Cuomo—who in the past told his audience that he had not used his journalistic sources to find out details about the allegations against his brother—was spying on a New Yorker story by journalist Ronan Farrow for related to the allegations against former Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
The text messages released by the AG James show how Melissa DeRosa, Andrew Cuomo’s top aide, asked the CNN anchor if he had any information about Farrow’s story. Likewise, it is also revealed that Chris Cuomo said he had leads on one of the women who reported the former governor of New York for sexual misconduct.
Many journalists across the country, including those working in media outlets considered liberal or left-wing, are strongly criticizing Chris Cuomo on social media. Some are even questioning CNN for not firing the Cuomo Prime Time host.
“This is an embarrassment to journalism,” wrote Matt Pearce, a reporter for the Los Angeles Times.
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Rolling Stone Magazine editor-in-chief Noah Shachtman commented on Twitter that, if true, the host’s actions are unethical: “If this story is accurate, it describes a series of shocking ethical breaches — fireable offenses at any other news outlet.” Helaine Olen, a Washington Post columnist, also opined that Cuomo’s violation of journalistic standards and ethics is “just staggering.”
Andrew Feinberg, a reporter at The Independent, was also blunt in stating that Cuomo’s actions “would be a fireable offense in most newsrooms.”
CNN involved in the criticism surrounding Chris Cuomo
Most of the criticism shares two points of view: a distaste for the way Chris Cuomo acted, and also a questioning of how CNN is handling the situation with one of its star anchors.
“This is an open-and-shut fireable offense. CNN should really consider what message it would send to their newsrooms if this sort of egregious ethical violation is only met with a slap on the wrist,” said David Gardner, who has written articles for the Washington Post and The New York Times.
Articles against CNN and Chris Cuomo were also published in liberal media. In The Atlantic, journalist David A. Graham wrote: “The fallout from Andrew Cuomo’s departure has made Chris Cuomo’s position untenable. He should resign; if he doesn’t, CNN should sack him.”
In the article, Graham claims that both Cuomo and CNN had serious failings in putting their personal and family interests before journalistic ethics, and also allowing the Cuomo brothers to appear on Prime Time to gain ratings and boost the former governor’s profile.
Erik Wemple, the Washington Post‘s famed media critic, also fired back at CNN, who after the recent revelations by the New York attorney general’s office said that the news network should have acted months ago by conducting “an internal investigation of all Chris Cuomo‘s actions vis-a-vis his brother’s scandals.”
It is not yet known what will happen to Chris Cuomo. CNN has not yet said whether it will keep him on the payroll or fire him, however, the network released a statement saying that “the thousands of pages of additional transcripts and exhibits that were released today by the NY Attorney General deserve a thorough review and consideration.”
Emmanuel Alejandro Rondón is a journalist at El American specializing in the areas of American politics and media analysis // Emmanuel Alejandro Rondón es periodista de El American especializado en las áreas de política americana y análisis de medios de comunicación.
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