'He put us in a bad spot': Jake Tapper criticizes Chris Cuomo
Category: News & PoliticsVia: texan1211 • 3 weeks ago • 5 comments
Days after CNN's president criticized Chris Cuomo, another colleague said that the anchor's actions put the network in a "bad spot."
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Jake Tapper, the host of The Lead with Jake Tapper and State of the Union, said while he understands the love Cuomo feels for his brother, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, it was "not a fun day" when news reports revealed that Chris Cuomo participated in strategy calls as the governor contended with mounting allegations of sexual harassment earlier this year.
"I cannot imagine a world in which anybody in journalism thinks that that was appropriate ... and he said, Chris, in his apology that he delivered on air, said that he put us in a bad spot, and I would also agree with that," he told Kara Swisher on a New York Times podcast on Thursday. "And then, just as a last point, I would say that I work very hard to be fair and to be ethical and to not cross lines."
JEFF ZUCKER TO CNN STAFFERS: CHRIS CUOMO 'DID CROSS A LINE'
Tapper said the controversy surrounding the prime-time anchor does not affect his work because he isn't management but noted that "we all reflect on each other."
The network's executives reprimanded Cuomo for the controversy last week, with CNN President Jeff Zucker telling staffers that he understood the "unease" over Cuomo's "mistake."
"He did cross a line," Zucker told staff during a Tuesday afternoon town-hall meeting, according to the Daily Beast.
After Zucker reportedly told the anchor he should apologize on-air, Cuomo expressed remorse on his show, Cuomo Prime Time.
"I understand why that was a problem for CNN," he said on Thursday. "It will not happen again. 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."
Cuomo took part in a series of conference calls with the governor and several of his top aides and lawyers aimed at crafting a public relations strategy after the governor was accused by at least 10 women of sexual harassment earlier this year, the Washington Postreported on Thursday. The CNN anchor apparently dissuaded his brother from resigning and invoked the phrase "cancel culture" in his argument.
CNN told the Washington Examiner in a statement that it was "inappropriate" for the anchor to participate in such meetings but said he won't be disciplined for it.
"Chris has not been involved in CNN's extensive coverage of the allegations against Governor Cuomo — on air or behind the scenes," the network said. "In part because, as he has said on his show, he could never be objective. But also because he often serves as a sounding board for his brother."
"However, it was inappropriate to engage in conversations that included members of the Governor's staff, which Chris acknowledges," it added. "He will not participate in such conversations going forward."
The governor's office acknowledged the conversations, with spokesman Rich Azzopardi telling the Washington Examiner that "there were a few phone conversations, with friends and advisers giving the governor advice."
The New York Democrat said on Monday that he often receives advice from members of the press other than his brother.
"I had conversations with my brother. I always have conversations with my brother because he's my brother and he's my best friend. Obviously, he was aware of what was going on, and I talked to him about it, and he told me his thoughts," Andrew Cuomo said Monday afternoon on Long Island. "He always tells me his thoughts. ... But I talk to journalists about situations all the time, and they tell me their thoughts and their advice."
The governor faces sexual harassment accusations from at least 10 women, and the allegations have resulted in two investigations: New York Attorney General Letitia James is investigating the claims at the state level, and New York State Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie is directing an "impeachment investigation" to look into the matter in the New York State Legislature. The governor apologized for making anyone feel uncomfortable but has denied all charges of inappropriate touching.
James's investigation into accusations of sexual harassment was expanded earlier this month to examine allegations that a top adviser tied counties' COVID-19 vaccine access to support for the governor, which Beth Garvey, Cuomo's counsel, said "malign[ed] a decadeslong public servant."
In a separate matter, James recently received a referral to conduct a criminal investigation into the governor's use of state resources to promote his book about leadership during the pandemic, American Crisis: Leadership Lessons from COVID-19 Pandemic, after a March 31 ethics complaint from a liberal watchdog group sought an inquiry into whether he violated a law prohibiting "the use of campaign funds for personal use." Cuomo insisted members of his staff volunteered to help with the book, for which he is expected to earn more than $5 million, but his office acknowledged that there might be some "incidental" use of state resources, according to the New York Times.
Cuomo has also been accused of directing state health officials to give special COVID-19 testing access to members of his inner circle, including Chris Cuomo, claims denied by Azzopardi as "insincere efforts to rewrite the past," in an email to the Washington Examiner.
The governor is under federal investigation for his handling of nursing homes during the COVID-19 pandemic after Melissa DeRosa, a top Cuomo aide, acknowledged that the governor's office hid the state's nursing home coronavirus death toll out of fear of political retribution from then-President Donald Trump.
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Despite pressure from within his own party, Cuomo, who is eligible for reelection in 2022, has heeded his brother's advice and resisted calls to resign, saying the allegations of impropriety are false.
A representative for CNN did not immediately respond to the Washington Examiner's request for comment.
Tags:News, Jake Tapper, CNN, Andrew Cuomo, Chris Cuomo, Media, Sexual Harassment, New York
Original Author:Carly Roman
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