CNN suspends Anchor Chris Cuomo over concerns he may have helped his brother wrongly

Did Chris Cuomo inappropriately try to help his brother, the then Governor Andrew Cuomo?

Did Chris Cuomo inappropriately try to help his brother, the then Governor Andrew Cuomo?
Did Chris Cuomo inappropriately try to help his brother, the then Governor Andrew Cuomo?

Chris Cuomo Is Suspended by CNN

CNN television journalist Chris Cuomo was suspended for an indefinite time by the television network on Tuesday after new details emerged about his efforts to assist his brother, Andrew M Cuomo, the former governor of New York.

Andrew M Cuomo is facing a cascade of sexual harassment accusations that led to his resignation as a governor.

CNN said it suspended Cuomo “indefinitely, pending further evaluation”, following new disclosures about how he helped his brother, former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, in the midst of a scandal over sexual harassment allegations, a move that leaves the Warner Media network without the services of its most-watched anchor.

“The New York Attorney General’s office released transcripts and exhibits Monday that shed new light on Chris Cuomo’s involvement in his brother’s defence. The documents, which we were not privy to before their public release, raise serious questions.”

At one point, the governor’s former top aide, Melissa DeRosa, asked the anchor if he could check his “sources” about a rumor that Politico was working on an article that included additional accusations. “On it,” Chris Cuomo responded.

Ms. James’s report also included a text from Mr. Cuomo to Ms. DeRosa sent a few days after a woman, Anna Ruch, told The New York Times that Andrew Cuomo had made an unwanted advance toward her at a wedding in New York City. “I have a lead on the wedding girl,” the anchor wrote in the text.

“When Chris admitted to us that he had offered advice to his brother’s staff, he broke our rules and we acknowledged that publicly. But we also appreciated the unique position he was in and understood his need to put family first and job second,” CNN said in a statement Tuesday evening.

“However, these documents point to a greater level of involvement in his brother’s efforts than we previously knew. As a result, we have suspended Chris indefinitely, pending further evaluation.”

A string of messages and communications released yesterday by the Attorney General showed the younger Cuomo actively engaged in tracking down leads about stories that might affect his brother, and speaking regularly with the politician’s senior staffers.

Cuomo said on air in May, “It was a mistake, because I put my colleagues here, who I believe are the best in the business, in a bad spot. I never intended for that, I would never intend for that, and I am sorry for that.”

Despite the controversy, or perhaps because of it, Cuomo has remained CNN’s most popular anchor, drawing bigger audiences than primetime colleagues like Don Lemon and Anderson Cooper or other well-known personae, including Jake Tapper and Wolf Blitzer.

CNN has defended him for months, even though his actions are viewed as anathema to many practitioners of journalism.

Perhaps CNN’s reluctance to discipline Cuomo came because it encouraged his relationship with his older brother in the not-too-distant past. At the start of the Coronavirus pandemic in 2020, the Cuomo brothers became a popular media spectacle when they started doing interviews during the younger brother’s 9 p.m. show, despite long-held conventions among journalists that reporters recuse themselves from a news story when they may face a conflict of interest.

Cuomo, who started at CNN as a co-anchor of the morning program ‘New Day‘, has seen his profile broaden while he grilled Trump officials and others during minutes-long segments that sometimes proved so gripping that CNN would skip scheduled commercial breaks in order to give viewers more of his work.

Cable-news outlets once kept their anchors on a tighter leash. Keith Olbermann and Joe Scarborough faced discipline at MSNBC after they made political donations, a violation of NBC News policies. But in recent years, some news networks have kept their top personalities on the schedule even when controversy threatened to engulf them.

MSNBC’s Joy Reid in 2018 found herself under scrutiny after the discovery of a group of unsavory, even offensive, posts she made on a blog earlier in her journalism career. She made things more difficult when she claimed that an unknown party had hacked the now-defunct blog, and even said at the time she had engaged a cybersecurity expert to find evidence – none of which has ever been brought to public discussion.

Her colleague, Lawrence O’Donnell, was forced to retract a report in 2019 in which he alleged Russia had co-signed many of President Trump’s loans.

Cuomo’s absence leaves CNN in need of a new plan in primetime.

[With Inputs from IANS]

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