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Sunday, April 14, 2013

Only Thing The Mother Jones Tape Proves is David Corn Has No Journalistic Standards

Its been a long week for David Corn, Mother Jones' Washington Reporter. On Tuesday Corn released a tape of a Senator McConnell campaign meeting where the Minority Leader and his staff discussed opposition research on potential Democratic opponent Ashley Judd.

The tape's release has lead to some questions about David Corn's integrity and skill as a reporter at least until he answers some question:

1) Why did you allow the transcript to be doctored?

 The tape itself turned out to be a huge nothing-- McConnell’s aides were guilty of doing their jobs as candidates for every office from every party conducts opposition. And part of that research is finding the worst possible things about their opponents.

Logic dictates that David Corn knew there was nothing damaging on the tape--- that's the only explanation for,  as we reported on Wednesday the transcript of the tape was doctored to make McConnell look bad.

This is what Mother Jones said was on the recording:

 So I'll just preface my comments that this reflects the work of a lot of folks: Josh, Jesse, Phil Maxson, a lot of LAs, thank them three times, so this is a compilation of work, all the way through.
Caesar refused the crown three times, there was a song Three Times a Lady, but until the Mother Jones transcript the phrase "thank them three times" had never crossed my eyes or ears.  And this first time it was a total lie.

The Weekly Standard and the Louisville Courier Journal both reported that when one listens to what is on the recording you hear:
“So I just preface my comments that this reflects the work of a lot of folks: Josh, Jesse, Phil Maxson, a lot of LAs, in their free time, so this is a compilation of work, all the way through.
So David nu? Did you have a lousy story and want to make it better?

2) How did you NOT know the tape was obtained illegally?   It's reporting 101--someone gives you a tip you as how they got the information?  Heck, this afternoon my son offered me a slice of pizza and my first question was "where did you get it from?"

We are told that at least one member of Progress Kentucky Curtis Morrison, made the tape and another was a witness. McConnell campaign manager Jesse Benton told the radio station the door in question has a large gap at the bottom and a vent could’ve recorded the meeting through.

According to Kentucky Law Mr. Morrison and Mr. Corn may be in a heap of trouble: 

Divulging information obtained through illegal eavesdropping is a separate crime, punishable as a misdemeanor. Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. §526.060.
In other words if this story turns out to be true...not only is Progress Kentucky liable but if Mother Jones and Mr. Corn knew the wiretap did not have the consent of one party and they ran with it anyway.
So the question arises was David Corn being a lousy journalist by not asking the question? Or did he know how it was taped but didn't care anyway?  According to Mother Jones they consulted with attorney's who said running the tape was OK-- so my vote is for arrogance.

The bottom line is just as he did when he selectively edited the the 47% tape  David Corn  ignored anything resembling journalistic standards to promote the his political ideology.

The night the tape was released Mr. Corn was on MSNBC and said:
I'm Still Waiting for McConnell to Respond to the Substance of the Story
Well Mr. Corn, we are still waiting for you to respond to the total lack of journalistic standards in your reporting.

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