tv Reliable Sources CNN January 29, 2012 11:00am-12:00pm EST
european powers to stay out of the affairs of the western hemisphere was laid out in president james monroe's 1823 annual message to congress. thanks to all of you for being part of my special show from davos, switzerland this week. stay tuned for "reliable sources." newt gingrich has spent the year beating up on the elite media. hey, we're fair game for a series of debate moderators, but this week in the florida primary one of those moderate os fought back. >> you made an anization like that, you need to explain that. >> did wolf blitzer take the right approach? from national review to the drudge report. a sudden avalanche of negative newt stories. >> well, it's increasingly interesting to watch -- >> why are so many conservative
commentators ganging up on gingrich? president obama's state of the union draws the usual wall to wall television coverage. >> good evening. while our focus in primetime here in washington tonight will be the president's state of the union address before a joint session of congress at 9:00 p.m. eastern time. to be fair, the attention hasn't been on the president, not for months. >> within a day the story fades. has the media's attention span grown too short? plus, the "new york times" reports that a former yale football star withdrew from potential road scholarship after a student filed an informal complaint accusing him of sexual assault. no charges ever filed. is that out of balance? why did the yale daily news sit on the story? i'm howard kurtz, and this is "reliable sources." if the final days before the primary, newt gingrich needed another strong debate performance to overtake mitt
romney. the presidential debates, after all, have pretty much become the campaign, and after beating up on the likes of chris wallace and maria bartiromo and most notably, john king, there was every reason to expect that the former house speaker would unleash another anti-media tyrade. here's what happened at the cnn debate in jacksonville. >> are you satisfied right now with the level of transparency as far as his personal finances? >> this is a nonsense question. >> you made an issue when you say he lives in a world of swiss bank accounts. >> i didn't say that, you did. >> i am happy to say that on an interview tv show. >> you make a serious accusation against governor romney like that, you need to explain that. >> that moment seemed to crystallize an increasingly rough media environment for gingrich with want just florida, but perhaps his entire candidacy on the line. joining us now to examine the coverage of this very intense political week in orlando, mark
barabak, political reporter for "the los angeles times." in tampa jackie kucinich, political reporter for "usa today," and in new york jeff greenfield, co-anchor of pbs's "need to know" and a correspondent for cbs, abc, and cnn. jeff, did wolf blitzer by going up against gingrich and not just letting him walk all over him, did he put himself in the position of debating the candidate? >> no, i that wolf was perfectly the -- the tone was perfect, and i'm perfectly prepared to have been deeply crap of my former colleague had he screwed up, but he didn't. when you are a moderator, do you this and pose a question with both hands tied behind your back. you can't debate because you are not an advocate. what wolf did was to remind speaker gingrich of the context in which those remarks were made, and i think you saw that gingrich rapidly retreated and then no longer decided it was the right time to coin an old phrase beat the press. i think he went to the well once too often.
he has had this very successful run of criticizing moderators, and i think it time it was like throwing a pitch that worked against a batter of five others times, only this batter was ready for it, and i think responded exactly appropriately. >> sorry. i would like to be more critical, but i think he did a great job. >> we'll give you a chance for another question. mark, when it was newt smacking around john king over that question at a previously debate about the interview with his ex-wife, mary ann, john king chose not really to argue with gingrich except to say this was a story first reported by abc and not cnn. wolf fought become. >> i think wolf called him on his, frankly, b.s. newt gingrich had made a charge. he gave a weenie answer about it's one thing to say it on a national tv show, but this is a debate where we talk about other issues. i think it resonated the way it did with voters and viewers because everybody knows the mouthy kick who pops off on the
playground, and someone shows up and it turned tail. it looked like that. i don't think it's quite up there with ronald reagan's microphone moment, but i think wolf blitzer pushed it, and romney called him on his b.s. and said you are saying all this stuff behind my back in effect, so say it to my face, and that's why it was an effective moment and why it resonated the way it did. >> it's been replayed endlessly on television, jackie kucinich, but even though this makes a big splash in the media, how important are these moments? wolf is not running for anything. >> i do think they're important because voters -- one of gingrich's biggest things has been these debates, and because he has an issue with these debates, he wasn't as strong as it was. voters care about this. i was watching -- and also, newt's fans love when he goes after the media, right? i think because this didn't go as well for him, i think a lot of people who are on the fence, i kind of -- we're not enthused
with this. i really do think it does matter. >> i've been looking at the boats behind you. there was a big headline on the huffington post about this. blitzer should put on his wall that said "wolf bites newt." let me move on to the earlier debate in tampa this past week. i was there for the nbc debate. the audience was awfully quiet. that's because of an admonition. >> hold their applause. any verbal reactions to what they hear on stage. >> well, i wish in retrospect i had protested when brian williams teek him out because i think it's wrong, and i think he took him out of it because the media is terrified that the audience will side. >> i could not have asked you the question if your ex-wife had not come forward. she's a republican, sir.
she said she supported much of your candidacy. >> you have to ask yourself the question, why would abc go back in m years? why would they dredge up something that had been reported several years ago? why would they do it two nights before a primary? why would they refuse to have other witnesses rebut her? we offered them a number of people who were there at the time who said what she was saying just wasn't true. >> we've we kind of jumped the gun by playing the second soundbyte. let me take you back to the first. brian williams gave the audience the no clapping admonition. gingrich said the media is afraid that candidates are going to beat up on the -- that the audience would side against the media with the moderator. here's my question. why should a moderator tell the audience to be quiet? >> just a couple of things. read the transcript of the lincoln-douglas debates, and you'll find that those crowds -- >> you sound like knight newt. >> they yelled and screamed. the second thing is -- and this
is something i am critical of cnn and the other cable nets about particularly in their openings, cnn and msnbc have covered these things like espn's game day, and they want the crowd to scream and yell because it's "good television." i happen to be one of those old foeingies that thinks it's better to listen to the candidates and keep the audience as all the fall debates have always done. the moderate raiders alleges tell the audiences during the general election debates, please just a little deck or up. i think that's the basic way to go. the irony here, of course, is that newt got -- allowing the audience to respond, whether they packed the hall with romney people or they just like those romney in your face moments, it was romney that got the applause, and i think jackie is right. i think audiences -- a couple of political scientists found this out in a study awe foo years ago. when an audience -- when viewers watch an audience cheer much less jump to its feet, which has never happened before, they kind of think that answer must have been right. >> oh, yeah. it makes it look like the
candidate is absolutely on a roll, and everybody likes that energy. >> also, howie, my mother was a librarian, so i tend to favor kind of more quiet audiences. >> but it's a live event, mark. why shouldn't the audience be a part of it? why should the moderator be saying sit on your hands? >> well, i guess i would agree with jeff. i'm a somewhat younger foeingy, but this is about the candidates. skwet who is going to run the show? literally. if the idea it s to inform voters, then i think the more time that's devoted to candidates, the less time it's given over to cheering and applause, again, maybe it's sort of old-fashioned, but it's about the candidates. it's about the voters learning. i don't think so much in the production value and the hiss reonices is as important. >> i'm going to disagree. you don't want people hoot and hollering to the point where you can't hear the candidates and it
becomes a circus, but, you know, it shouldn't necessarily be anticeptic show that's done in the temperature-controlled quiet of a television studio. >> they don't have to be anticeptic. >> there's a lot of backing and forthing between candidates. i don't think anyone that saw those exchanges would suggest it was ant septic. i don't think that the audience has to add to that. >> okay. let me move on to -- you know, we played -- >> i will say people have been -- if can i insert here, people have been watching these debates, though. look at the ratings that these debates have gotten, and i think part of that is the audience. it's the same reason people use laugh tracks. it engages the voter. i think they like -- if it gets more people to watch, gets more people involved in politics, i think it's okay. >> all right. i mean, there is, as jeff says, a little bit of show biz to this. maybe too much. let me come back to you, jeff greenfield, and we played a bite earlier. we saw newt gingrich going -- having a rematch, in effect, with john king after their confrontation at an earlier
debate, and gingrich said something that was blatantly untrue, and we talked about this on this program last week where abc's brian ross who did that interview with the ex-wife, second ex-wife, marianne gingrich. newt's campaign had been claiming that it put out other people to support his side and that dispute with his former wife and abc refused to interview them. well, that's not true. abc says it's not true. now finally gingrich's camp admits it's not true. why would gingrich go back on the air and make this charge again? any idea? >> well, not being a political psychologist, i can't tell you. i do think -- look, i think part of the reason goes way back to a dilemma that journalists always have when dealing with politicians which when they make an assertion, it seems -- it seems like you're taking sides if you say that's wrong. you are sometimes resorting to he-said-she-said journalism. you know, when a politician says something that's demon strably false, then i think it's absolutely right for a network
or any network, any jrnlist to come out and say this is not true. this isn't a matter of opinion. that's what happened here. now, you -- if john king had known that at that moment, i think wee have been totally right to say, excuse me, mr. speaker, but we can't find any of those witnesses. yeah -- >> the fact is they weren't even offered to abc and, you know, he was wrong the first time, and i agree with you. the media were absolutely right to call him on it, and i'm surprised he made the charge again, but jackie kucinich, going back on john king's show, i thought he was really mad at john king. gingrich seems to revel in these platforms, whether he is getting worked up about the moderators or not. >> i think it helps him when he -- aside from this last debate, i think it's helped him. i think when juan williams was asking him really tough questions and the fox debate and i think when the john king moment happened, i think that
ultimately helped gingrich in south carolina. you know -- >> my question, jackie is -- my question, jackie -- hold on a second. my question is how much of this is for show? i mean, newt gingrich looked really, really -- >> a couple of days later it's like, sure, go on the show, talk some more. you're saying? >> i think it's absolutely -- i think it's absolutely for show. i do. because it plays to his base and to the people that are angry at the media. it plays to people who are angry at the president, frankly, and the people who love him best. i think a lot of it's for show. i think the explosiveness of the anger, particularly with the john king question, i think that -- i think it was -- i wouldn't say orchestrated, but i think that was planned a little bit. >> before -- i want to play wrun wun more bit of sound, i'm sorry. this is just getting a lot of traction here. mitt romney on the air with an ad about newt gingrich that features a former pretty prominent television news anchor. >> newt gingrich, who came to power after preaching a higher
standard in american politics, a man who brought down another speaker on ethics accusations, tonight he has on his own record the judgment of his peers, democrat and republican alike. >> mark, the beginning research camp -- excuse me, the romney campaign refusing to pull that ad heing despite mrants from -- what do you make of tom brokaw? >> stupid like a fox. it's like they put this ad up, where gingrich disagrees. everyone is going on youtube to see the ad. the ad popped up, and tom brokaw? it didn't seem like an ad chshgs makes it all the more effective, and the fact that gingrich has protest and we're talking about it and like i said, it's probably getting double or triple or some huge exponential number more? >> it seems to be fair game. it's just like running a newspaper clip. nbc has complained -- yes, jeff. >> the point -- what's interesting to me about this is i see the dilemma for any news person to be part of an ad, but one of the things we always criticize about political ads is how blatantly false they are.
they're over produced. they use bad pictures. they use danger music, and they distort facts. now, here's an ad that simply is taking a news report and running it. apart from the awkwardness for tom brokaw or if any of us find ours in an ad, it almost seems to me that given fair use doctrine of copyright, it's maybe an appropriate thing to goushlgt streeter than distorting facts and throwing up an ad that libels an opponent. >> that is a good point. brokaw, however, says he is extremely uncomfortable with the use of his personal image and feels he doesn't want to be compromised as a journalist. when we come back, president obama gave a state of the union speech this week, but if you blinked ushg missed it, before it faded to black. americans believe they should be in charge of their own future.
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serving as half hour time entertainment between the two republican debates, and jeff greenfield, i know it's an election year, but in this twitter era, has the state of the union speech become just another piece of programming? >> i think it may be an idea whose time has passed. when woodrow wilson decided show up in person, that was the first time in more than 100 years a president has done this, and then it became more and more of an event. almost like a speech from the throne. i do think in many ways archaic. it's a speech where you almost never have a memorable line. it's a laundry list, and it's inherently political document. i always got a kick out of the fact that some of the responses both pro and con were written before the speech. >> the pre-bites. >> i always thought one speech a president should throw up something completely out of line. like, you know, i'm going to ae sex changes operation or something completely -- >> i do think in an era of twitter and social networking it is a kind of an archaic -- it's a pleasant enough experience, you know.
okay, who is sitting in the president's box? we make a speech and say something in israel. maybe it's time that the president started setting these things up in the hill in written form or e-mail and save everyone some time. >> nobody is iffing to give up that hour of primetime. we're a little short on time, but the fact that none of these things -- with the gridlock congress may be contributed to the brief duration of the news coverage. >> sure, there's that. i think it was important to the extent that it was a chance to lay out. people saw it for what it was. as you started by saying, this is an election year. this is not surprising. i mean, you know, i'll take a $5 million check if i could tell you what president bush in his 2008 state of the union address. the focus is on the republican race. they've had a short shelf life. >> they tend to be forgettable.
jackie, 91% of the people was an on-line poll saying they aprauf of the speech, and often the public likes these more than the journalists do. >> all of obama's state of the union watched this one. 37 million people watched this, which is the least of all of his speeches, and of that i think 20% tuned out within the first five minutes. i think even the public is more -- part of the public is more interested in the gop race. i think you're right, though. i think a lot of it is that a lot of this stuff isn't going to get done -- >> all of you, especially you two in the warm temperatures in florida, enjoy yourselves. coming up in the sect part of ""reliable sources" "going negative on newt. a square-off on why conservative pundits and publications are safageing the former speaker. a vast right-wing conspiracy perhaps? >> later, should the "new york times" have reported on the sexual assault complaint against the former yale football star when no charges have been filed.
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it was a remarkable snap shot of the media elite. the conservative media elite, that is. the banner headline on the drudge report insider gingrich repeatedly insulted reagan and there was a piece on bob dole blasting his colleague. a cnn story that gingrich admitted he was wrong in the way he ripped abc news with his interview with his ex-wife, and the flamboyant confront takers -- what's behind this seemingly orchestrated assault? joining us now here in washington, cathleen parker columnist from the washington post. and clarence page columnist for the "chicago tribune". cathleen, national view ann coulter, drudge, all unloading on newt within a couple of days. was there a secret meeting here? >> i didn't get the memo. you know, it's interesting, i want to clarify something right out of the gate, which is that when we talk about the media or
commentators, pundits, et cetera, coming after someone in an orchestrated way, these are conservative operatives, republican party operatives essentially. they're not journalists, and they're not representing any institutional entity, i don't think. i think they're representing their own political views, but they have access to media. they are media creatures. >> that include "national review? >>". >> it's obviously a magazine, but it was created from an idealogical point of view. right? as opposed to, for example, the "chicago tribune" or the washington post. it's more traditional what we call mainstream, and i call old school journalism entities. >> isn't this the kind of thing conservatives usually accuse the liberals of doing, ganging up on a republican? >> at the same time it's not a conspiracy. it's a community. you know? these are people with shared value. they are all reacting to the sudden realization that, hey, newt, you could win this thing. i have been hearing for weeks -- i know you have too, cathleen, buzz among people who have worked with newt gingrich.
democrats and republicans. i have heard more fury among republicans who work with on capitol hill or in other situations who were saying, well, you know, newt is not really that popular in washington. i think that's what's good about bob dole. he was the first big voice from capitol hill to speak -- what i have been hearing quietly from folks behind the scenes. that's what you are seeing. >> cathy, you wrote about gingrich's i'm not a lobbyist, even though i collected money from special interests. do you agree with clarence that a lot of these outlets, commentators, ann coulter, they weren't newt fans, but they really unleashed their firepower when it looked like he might win florida, which could well have seriously wounded the romney campaign. >> i not only do they lose the white house, but they lose the
house. he said we're thrilled that it looks like it might be newt because we think we can take back the house, and i think it's really that. it's not an anti-newt movement. it's a we need to put the best person forward that can win against obama and the general consensus is and the polls show generally that mitt romney is -- >> i'm fascinated by your comment a moment ago that many of these people are not acting just as independent commentators who happened to reach this conclusion, but they're on the team, and the team effort right now even within the gop is basically stop newt. >> there is -- look, i mean, conservatives talk to each other. you know, the national review on-line just had a big party the other night celebrating their tenth year anniversary. what do you think they were talking about in that crowd, and it's not that we sit down -- i wasn't there, by the way. it's not that they sit down and say, look, we're going to do the following kind of concerted way. it's just that they are of like mind given the circumstances. >> then when drudge goes wild and has four or five headlines on the given day with all of
these anti-gingrich stories, it gives the mainstream press a license, an exclusive, clarence, to write about how the right wing is turning on gingrich. >> well, it's news. whenever you see -- certainly if you saw suddenly a lot of liberals turning against obama, which happens about every other week for one reason or another, it's newt, and that's what we're seeing here. there is a civil war going on in the republican party. that's not news. when you start seeing people become vocal, who had been neutral before, then you say something is up, and i think look back, howard, you're going to see that it was when newt gingrich had that stunning performance in south carolina , love it or hate it, people said, oh, my gosh, newt can win this thing, and suddenly republicans who have been saying all along that, hey, that could possibly lose both houses of congress for us, they became vocal. >> what about the narratives take root in the media? for example, let's turn to mitt romney, and many stories about his investments in the caymen islands, swiss bank accounts,
and, of course, his tax rate being below 15%. is all of this fair even if what he did is perfectly legal, or is it being -- is it being fed by a journalist who just has a certain distaste for the fact that he is so rich? >> well, i think most journalists would like to be so rich. i don't know that it's anything is ever fair when it's not presented in a broader context. i don't think -- political campaigns are full of half truths. reporters will pick up the thread of what's being said, and, of course, their reporting, but i think we have a responsibility to provide that broader context. >> are we meeting that responsibility? >> i would say no. >> would you say that romney has -- there's some self-inflicted wounds here. he has had trouble talking about his own money, but are you saying that we have consciously or otherwise helped paint a character tour of romney? >> i think a lot of people are
perfectly happy to participate in that characterureization? is that a word? >> certainly. yeah. >> and, you know, we all, of course, in journalism try to give people a portrait of somebody positives and negatives. the most damaging gaf, or most damaging revelation is the one that confirms one of the negatives, and one of the negatives about romney is that he is an aloof elite criticizing elitists, and the off shore money, that kind of thing, plays into the idea that he is not a regular guy. >> that's the -- that's the big theme for romney that he is out of touch. he can't connect with the common person. the big theme against him, but put that in the context of fairness. the real question is is it necessary to be in touch with the common man in order to do a good job in turning around an economy. sarah palin was in touch with the common man. >> pregnant pause. let the transcripts show. let me bring this back to gingrich. he gives a speech in florida
where nasa is a big deal about going to the moon and starting a moon colony there, and when you think that's a good idea or not, that plays into a media perception, stereotype. newt is a space cadet. fair or unfair? >> he has 100 ideas a day, four or five of them are good. an awful lot of whacky ideas, and that's nothing new about that about newt. to me this is one of the whacky ideas in the sense -- i won't even go in depth on it. i love space travel and space exploration. it was so transparently obvious he was pandering to the cape canaveral vote. >> he has talked about -- >> that's kind of a tiny vote. >> let me get a break. up next, the media consensus is suddenly that president obama is a much stronger candidate for re-election. wishful thinking by the liberal press? all energy development comes with some risk, but proven technologies allow natural gas producers to supply affordable, cleaner energy, while protecting our environment. across america, these technologies protect air -
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his chances for re-election are improving. a bit of rush to judgment perhaps? >> one late night comedian talked about how the -- nothing makes obama look better than the current array of his republican challengers. there's some truth to that in the sense that people are watching the debates very closely, and as they watch also some optimistic figures come out about the economy, it could be better, but it could be worse too. they're saying, well, maybe obama doesn't look so bad. that could change in the next week, though, because it's all on that edge that economic figures tend to be. >> i don't dispute the craziness of the republican season and we went through the herman cain period and the donald trump period. liberal media could be closing ranks behind barack obama in an election. >> i don't think that's a conspiracy. i do think that most people in the media tend to be liberal. i mean, they just do. what was it, 1992, i tnk it was a huge -- whenever 92%, that
is, of journalists in washington voted for clinton. >> according to one survey. >> according to one survey, thank you. >> how much does in a benefit the president who has gotten ruch coverage for not being able to produce the liberal idea he promised? >> i think in a way it forces the media to be even more critical of obama, but let's not forget -- >> it forces them, or are you saying it should force them? >> it should force them, but they have to constantly check themselves to make sure, and, again, we're not talking about this monolithic entity. some newspapers are better than others. some net network are for fair than others, but one of the things that's helping obama is, by the way, did he -- could he hear him mention that he killed osama bin laden? >> yes. >> how many times did that come up? >> he is entitled to lead one speech with it. >> and the state of the union address -- >> the president not always so happy with his coverage despite what his critics may think. he recently told time playing zeen fareed zakaria the following, if we can put that up. i don't go to a lot of washington parties, and as a
consequence, the washington press corps maybe just doesn't feel like i'm in the mix enough with them, and they figure, well, if i'm not spending time with them, i must be cold and aloof. is that the reason? >> that's a nights spin. i mean, i have -- it was a fair well party for david axlerod. obama showed up. >> you two were haning out. >> the two of us and about 200 of our closest friends, yeah. it was how he worked the rowe room very comfortably and amiably. i think that's his spin right now because you can't go wrong on politics, right or left by blaming the media for your troubles. the fact is obama has had a couple of good weeks just like mitt romney had a bad week. that's the way the things go. >> presidents don't go with parties and hang out with journalists. that's a complete misconception. >> some like bill clinton do court journalism -- >> president obama invites journalists in periodically. he has even invited me in a couple of times, and imsure you
too. he trooedz tries to spread that around. i don't know which white house correspondent durn it was, but he basically acknowledged that everyone in the room had video for him. he is pretty kfrt. >> i think that was meant as a joke, but now he is -- at least occasionally part of the inner sishle. >> sure it's in jest. i think he is trying to demonstrate that he is not just inviting his best buddies every time. >> people from a different -- >> point of view. >> idealogical persuasion. >> people have been consistent cheerleaders. >> cathleen parker, thanks very much for stopping by this morning. >> thank you. >> after the break, he was showered with positive press after withdrew from a roads scholarship to play in a football game. now the "new york times" is saying that he faces an unproven allegation of sebs wal assault. is that solid enough to publish? fantastic! ring, ring. progresso. they fit! awesome. thank you. [ man ] ring, ring. pro-gresso. they fit! okay-y... okay? you don't understand. i've been eating progresso because there's...
patrick wick got a whole lot of media attention last fall when he was decide whethering to pass up an interview for a roads scholarship so he could play in the big harvard-yale game. >> yale's quarterback is a contender for the nfl draft with a stellar academic record, but he is getting the most attention these days for a big game day decision he has to make.
>> he may lie in the life he leads, an extraordinary individual in the ultimate team game. >> he wound up passing on that rhodes opportunity. >> it's just one of those things where it's an unfortunate set of circumstances in terms of timing, but i was very humbled and honored to have been selected just to the finalists because i know that's a very difficult process in itself. >> the "new york times" reported on friday that his rhodes candidacy had been suspended because another student at yale had accused him of sexual assault, and what's described as a formal complaint to the university, and never went to police, and few details is known about what she says happened in the dorm room. the times went with the story unlike the new york daily news that sat on it for three months. jane joins us. patrick was a hero. the "new york times" story basically makes him out to be a liar, possibly guilty of sexual assault? does that bother snu. >> they had a story out one day and then they had a story out the next day in which his agent
responded and said he wasn't charged with anything. it was an informal complaint. i have looked into it because it's different. colleges have a procedure by which a person can come and say this happened, and they have a choice as to whether or not they want to go further, whether they want to file legal charges. sometimes this has been used to silence complaints, but in this instance it seems to me when you read the story, it was incomplete when they ran it on friday, and then had he ran a follow-up, and it seems very murky and the sources are anonymous. it's very murky to me. >> patrick wouldn't comment for the original story, but a statement was put out on his behalf. let me put that on the screen. "new york times" story incorrectly connects patrick's decision to forego the rhodes scholarship with an informal complaint process that had concluded on campus prior to his withdrawal, a process that yielded no disciplinary measures, formal reports, or referrals to higher authorities. patrick's rhodes candidacy was never suspended, as suggested, and the official record at yale
issues no -- the worst thing that could happen to you is you get kicked out of the dorm, and there's no finding of guilt or innocence. i'm not prejudging the facts here. i am asking the question whether this was solid enough to be published in a major newspaper in a way that clearly is a blot on his reputation? >> the story seems to be saying -- asking what yale knew and whether they told rhodes. that -- when you look at it again, i think they're saying something else about yale and should they have reported it and did he know and the media are the people who linked his decision, not necessarily he. i think the college procedure is not that well known to people, and, again, it has been used sometimes. we don't know this seriousness of these charges. it doesn't mean it's not true. the fact that it didn't go further is a question, and i think if you look at this story and you don't really read all the way through, you think he has been accused, probably charged with sexual assault. that's what i think a reader might come to conclude. >> cathleen parker was just out
here on the set before you. you wrote a column that appears today in the washington post that says we don't know anything, but we're smearing this guy anyway. we invited "the times" reporter to appear on the program. he declined. "the times" gave us a statement. "publishing the story was an easy call. we report news. the fact that wit had done this was clearly significant news. there were meticulous in our reporting and editing and wit's accuser's identity was not compromised. we stand by the story." "the times" taking some heat for this decision because it is murky. >> it is very murky. their statement seems to be saying that he knew of this and that this should have been reported and what did yale tell rhodes? they must feel that their reporting has some solidity to it. the question is the sexual assault procedure and is that something that they really had enough to go on to make that the big part of the story. >> just to be crystal clear, this is a situation where the woman did not go to the police
to charge sexual assault. "the yale daily news" has known about this since december. we invited the editor chief on the program. he first accepted, then he backed out. but in a statement "the yale daily news" says in order to be fair to those involved, they decided that these details remain allegations, not going to publish it and was not aware of any connection between this informal complaint and the decision to back off the rhodes scholarship. "the yale daily news" exercise the restraint that perhaps "the new york times" should have? >> well, you know, i don't know all the facts on this story. >> none of us do. >> none of us does. and "the yale daily news" was taking heat even from some of its former editors. there's the allegations of sexual harassment by fraternity men at yale that they've had a hostile climate there. >> let me turn to another story that happened this past week. it involves the anchor -- morning anchor at the fox station in new york, greg kelly, who happens to be the son of
police commissioner ray kelly, getting a lot of attention. let's play a little bit of how it's playing out on new york television. >> commissioner ray kelly making his first public appearance today since his son was accused of raping a woman. the district attorney's office is investigating the case. and no charges have been filed. >> okay. i could not hear that in my ear. i hope the audience could hear it. essentially because this guy is an anchor in new york and because he's the police commissioner's son, there's already been three stories about this in "the new york times." again no charges have been filed. does that make you uneasy? >> it makes me uneasy. i feel that this is such a difficult area because so often historically women have been afraid to come forward. they have been afraid to press charges. because they won't be believed. because they will be besmirched. that's over here. and then there's the specifics of this cases which are the old rule in journalism used to be, you don't do a story unless charges have been filed in this instance. and then "the new york post," now we're going to get into a
battle of "the new york post" defending him with anonymous quotes saying the case has no merits. she texted him. >> and owned by rupert murdoch. >> right. >> just to make sure everyone understands this, the woman didn't file a compliant for three months before going to authorities and says she doesn't remember a lot of the details because she was drunk. if i'm greg kelly, it's an unfortunate situation that you're getting extra attention because of who your dad is. >> well, i think that's probably true. and then there was some story that the boyfriend of this young woman went up to him. i really think we do need to say, because somebody doesn't report it and because they were drunk doesn't mean something terrible didn't happen. but i don't think the story deserves that kind of attention until a charge is filed. >> jane hall, thanks very much. still to come, a tv reporter goes toe to toe with a connecticut mayor. and "the new york times" digs into where iphone and ipad are really made. we're paying for all spill related clean-up costs.
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million iphones, 30 million ipads and other products made overseas? but the answer, turns out, is complicated. it's not just that it's cheaper to make she's products in places like asia but that america isn't producing enough workers with the skills to make these electronics or make them quickly. this goes to the heart of the unemployment problem in this country. and in a follow-up story, "the times" disclosed dangerous and overcrowded conditions at some chinese facilities that make the apple products including in one instance a fatal explosion. i also liked what mario diaz, reporter for new york's wpix-tv, did this week. he was interviewing the mayor of east haven, connecticut, joe marturo, after a probe led to arrests of four of the town's police officers for allegedly profiling and discriminating against latinos. look at how diaz handled the mayor's response. >> what are you doing for the latino community today? >> i might have tacos when i go home. i'm not quite sure yet. we are an open community. you know, no matter how you twist and turn it --
>> reporter: i'm not twisting or turning your words. you just told me that tonight when i asked you what are you doing for the latino community -- >> here we go. go ahead. go ahead. make it sound whichever way reporters want it to sound. >> reporter: mayor, mayor -- >> go for it. take your best shot. >> reporter: mayor -- >> take your best shot. go ahead. >> reporter: i am not twisting words here. >> say it whatever way you want. this makes great news. >> diaz was absolutely right to challenge the mayor who has since apologized for the dumb remark. the stench from the british tabloids scandal just got a little stronger. police have arrested four current and former journalists at rupert murdoch's "sun" including the executive editor. scott leonard says this is not about phone hacking which led to t the scloeclosure of "news of th world." we have not gotten to the bottom of this journalistic cesspool in london pinchts the extreme weather story was dramatic enough on its own. >> something terrifying took the south by surprise last night.
no warning. 25 tornadoes striking in less than 24 hours. >> well, not quite. james span, chief meteorology at wbma, abc affiliate in birmingham, ridiculed him on his blog. no warning? get a clue. this event was forecast days in advance. abc's "world news" did a follow-up report. spann was one of those interviewed which made clear the storms didn't suddenly materialize. >> the adams and so many other families had time to get to their safe place. >> a tornado warning. >> because the warnings came early. >> their trusted forecaster start eed spreading the word da before the storm. >> but the newscast never acknowledged that its previous report had been, well, blown out of the water. abc should have just admitted we made a mistake. that's it for this edition of "reliable sources." i'm howard kurtz. join us next sunday at 11:00 a.m. eastern fornother critical look at the media. "s