Top 10 things the media got wrong about ‘collusion’ and ‘obstruction’

The prestige press has some explaining to do — for subjecting the nation to a long, cruel ordeal named “collusion” and “obstruction.” Almost two years and millions of column inches later,

Here are the 10 worst, drawn from among many more:

10. CNN bungles Comey testimony

It took four bylines — including those of CNN stars Jake Tapper and Gloria Borger — to completely botch the most important aspect of former FBI Director James Comey’s June 2017 congressional testimony.

9. Times columnist shares fervid dreams

New York Times columnist Charles Blow’s column of Dec. 2, 2018, was silly even by his standards.

8. Washington Post ‘fact checker’ needs a fact check

“All the Known Times the Trump Campaign Met With Russians” read the headline on a 2017 Fact Checker feature in The Washington Post. But by fact-checking, the paper really means judging various claims against liberal orthodoxies.

7. The MSNBC spy who should stay in the cold

No senior US official has done more damage to the credibility of the intelligence community than John Brennan.  Last month, Brennan confidently predictedthat “Friday [March 8] is the day the grand-jury indictments come down” against Trump associates and family members over “criminal conspiracy involving the Russians and US persons.” Nope.

6. The Guardian concocts a collusion meeting

Among foreign outlets, none covered itself in as much shame as The Guardian. The British paper in November 2018 published a story — bylined to superstar writer Luke Harding and two others, one of whom later mysteriously disappeared from the paper’s Web site — about secret talks between one Trump campaign chief Paul Manafort and WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange that took place at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London. The sourcing was flimsy, to put it generously, and sure enough, as Glenn Greenwald notes at The Intercept, “Nothing in the [Mueller] report even hints, let alone states, that [Manafort] ever visited Julian Assange.”

5. WaPo columnist’s overstated, undying Ukraine narrative

“The Trump campaign worked behind the scenes” ahead of the Republican National Convention “to make sure the new Republican platform won’t call for giving weapons to Ukraine to fight Russian and rebel forces.” So reported The Washington Post’s Josh Rogin.

4. The Atlantic accuses Jeff Sessions!

In June 2017, the combustible young reporter Julia Ioffe wrote an article for The Atlantic, running to several thousand words, that cast doubt on former Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ claim that he didn’t meet with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak as a Trump surrogate but rather as a matter of routine in his role at the time as a US senator.

3. David Corn’s dossier debacle

It was the document that set off the whole shebang. In October 2016, days before the election, David Corn of Mother Jones wrote of an unnamed “former senior intelligence officer for a Western country,” Christopher Steele (unnamed at the time), who claimed that the Russians had dirt on Trump they could use to blackmail him.

2. McClatchy catches Michael Cohen in Prague

Speaking of the dossier, remember when McClatchy’s Greg Gordon and Peter Stone reported that Mueller had evidence that Trump consigliere Michael Cohen had “secretly made a late-summer trip to Prague during the 2016 presidential campaign,”

1. Buzzfeed knows who told Cohen to lie

Which brings us to the top foul-up of the whole sordid saga. That would be BuzzFeed’s report, by Jason Lepold and Anthony Cormier, in January claiming that Trump had directed Cohen to lie to Congress about talks to build a Trump Tower in Moscow.

Source: Top 10 things the media got wrong about ‘collusion’ and ‘obstruction’

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