CNN is under pressure to enlist an outside, white-shoe law firm to investigate the scandal surrounding suspended anchor Chris Cuomo, but it is unclear if the liberal network will.
Bombshell documents released late last month by New York investigators showing Cuomo’s intense efforts to protect now-ousted Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo amid sexual misconduct allegations have resulted in CNN suspending the “Cuomo Prime Time” namesake.
The scandal-plagued, liberal network has said Cuomo is suspended “indefinitely, pending further evaluation,” but has not shed any light on who exactly will be investigating.
“It goes beyond the pale to think that an internal probe here would be appropriate and satisfy an ethical response. Who would trust that? The New York State Attorney General’s Investigation speaks for itself. Chris Cuomo’s actions can’t be papered-over by a CNN probe,” a CNN insider told Fox News Digital.
CNN suspended Chris Cuomo “indefinitely, pending further evaluation” after newly released documents shed new light on his role in former Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s sexual misconduct scandal.
CNN suspended Chris Cuomo “indefinitely, pending further evaluation” after newly released documents shed new light on his role in former Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s sexual misconduct scandal. (CNN)
CNN did not respond when asked if an outside firm would be hired. Parent company WarnerMedia/AT&T didn’t respond to multiple requests for comment, either.
Fox News Digital also emailed everyone on AT&T’s board of directors with the same question but didn’t receive any responses.
“CNN needs to commission an outside investigation like they did with their Tailwind debacle if there is to be any credibility,” a longtime media executive told Fox News Digital, referring to the infamous 1998 retraction of a CNN story that falsely claimed the U.S. military used nerve gas in a mission to kill American defectors in Laos during the Vietnam War.
CNN enlisted an independent investigation to look into the report, and a staggering retraction was issued once the outside probe concluded CNN’s report could not be supported. But CNN has changed significantly since 1998, and then-president Tom Johnson is no longer with the company. WarnerMedia News and Sports chairman Jeff Zucker now oversees the network.
“Jeff Zucker is hopelessly compromised in how he’s covered up for Cuomo’s buffoonery, lies and ethical lapses over the last two years. And this outside investigation should be focusing on Jeff just as much as it does Chris,” the media executive, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said.
Despite calls for an outside probe from media industry professionals, UltraViolet, prominent women’s group, doesn’t think the “Cuomo Prime Time” namesake deserves the attention.
“CNN doesn’t need an outside counsel to know that Chris Cuomo should never be put on the air again. He used his position of power to help orchestrate an attack on victims of sexual abuse. CNN should fire Chris Cuomo today,” UltraViolet campaign director Elisa Batista told Fox News Digital.
Plenty of industry experts simply don’t think an internal probe is adequate, but Poynter Institute senior media writer Tom Jones feels an internal investigation can be effective in this case because of the overwhelming amount of public evidence.
“Thanks to the New York Attorney General’s documents, it looks as if CNN has the information it needs to determine whether Chris Cuomo crossed the line,” Jones told Fox News Digital.