As my PJ Media colleague A.J. Kaufman pointed out Sunday, the Chris Cuomo saga is far from over.
“If CNN wants to uphold its dwindling integrity as a news outlet, they should explain what they knew, when they knew it, and, most importantly, why they pretended not to know it,” he wrote.
The network may not explain what they knew, but a disgruntled Chris Cuomo appears to be uninterested in going down in flames alone. According to a report from the Wall Street Journal, Cuomo claims that CNN president Jeff Zucker was very much aware of his efforts to help his brother through his sexual misconduct allegations.
“Mr. Cuomo has the highest level of admiration and respect for Mr. Zucker,” an attorney representing Cuomo said in a statement to the Wall Street Journal. “They were widely known to be extremely close and in regular contact, including about the details of Mr. Cuomo’s support for his brother. There were no secrets about this, as other individuals besides Mr. Cuomo can attest.”
The statement may have been complimentary towards Zucker but was clearly designed to link Zucker to Cuomo’s efforts to help his brother.
After Cuomo’s termination was announced, fellow anchor Brian Stelter accused Cuomo of “violat[ing] journalistic ethics and norms not once or twice, but many times,” calling his actions “a serious breach of standards and practices.”
But if Jeff Zucker was in regular contact with Cuomo about how he was helping his embattled brother, then the implications of that are huge.
CNN, for its part, is denying Cuomo’s claim. “He has made a number of accusations that are patently false,” CNN said in a statement. “This reinforces why he was terminated for violating our standards and practices, as well as his lack of candor.”
It doesn’t even matter if Cuomo is telling the truth. It appears that he isn’t going down quietly, and his willingness to link Zucker, the president of the network, to his scandal makes that clear.
Will Cuomo try to tarnish others in the network? Will he dish on Brian Stelter next for how he slammed Cuomo?
I think things are about to get really interesting.