Norah O’Donnell’s ‘determined’ Trump passport tweet less than CBS reporting requirements: sources


CBS Night Information anchor Norah O’Donnell is rankling journalists at CBS Information along with her tweets about former President Donald Trump’s passports, with some griping that she performed it quick and free in response to CBS Information’ reporting requirements.

O’Donnell tweeted Monday that she had been advised by a “DOJ official” that the FBI was “not in possession” of Trump’s three passports, which contradicted the previous president’s assertion that his journey paperwork have been taken by FBI brokers who searched his Florida residence final week

However the anchor attributed the data to a single supply — an enormous no-no at CBS Information, which has a strict two-source protocol, indignant CBS sources advised The Submit. They added that the tweets additionally made it sound like O’Donnell was calling a former president a “liar.”

“This is a humiliation for CBS that the face of the your community can’t even make a second name to a Justice Division rep,” one furious supply mentioned. “It’s journalism 101.”

The FBI had returned the paperwork earlier within the afternoon, in accordance to now-public correspondence between Trump’s camp and the DOJ.


In a written assertion to The Submit, a CBS rep defended O’Donnell’s collection of tweets.

“Donald Trump publicly alleged that his passports have been ‘stolen’ and within the palms of the FBI. As a part of the traditional reporting course of, our reporters inquired with the DOJ about whether or not they had Donald Trump’s passports,” a CBS rep mentioned in a press release to The Submit.

“They replied that they didn’t,” the rep added. “Our reporting mirrored that; it was true then and it’s true now that the FBI was not in possession of his passports on the time. And because the tweet thread makes clear, any gadgets that weren’t contained within the warrant could be returned.”

“It’s nonetheless dangerous journalism,” the supply punched again. “She didn’t ask if the passports have been ever of their possession. She didn’t say ‘not in possession.’”

CBS reps defended O’Donnell’s tweets about Donald Trump’s passports.
CBS through Getty Photographs

Semantics apart, the supply mentioned: “She’s determined. It doesn’t look good. In the event you’re going to assault the POTUS and name him a liar you shouldn’t tweet the factor.”

CBS insiders defined that usually, any information reported by the information division should be confirmed by at the very least two individuals or else it’s in violation of the community’s requirements & practices guidelines.

A narrative may be sourced to a single firm spokesperson, however in O’Donnell’s case, it’s unclear if the DOJ official is certainly a press rep or an nameless supply.

“In line with a DOJ official, the FBI is NOT in possession of former President Trump’s passports. Trump had accused the FBI of stealing his three passports through the search of his Mar-a-Lago residence,” O’Donnell wrote.

She adopted up, tweeting: “We’re additionally studying tonight that if any gadgets not contained within the warrant have been retrieved through the FBI search at Mar-a-Lago, they are going to be returned.”

On her present, which aired practically an hour earlier than she despatched out the tweets, O’Donnell mentioned:  “A supply tells CBS Information it’s potential they [passports] have been swept up within the search, and if that’s the case, they’d be returned.”

donald trump
Former President Donald Trump claimed that the FBI had seized three passports throughout their raid of his Mar-a-Lago residence.
AFP through Getty Photographs

O’Donnell’s tweets went viral after Trump spokesman Taylor Budowich tweeted a screenshot of an electronic mail from a member of the Justice Division’s Nationwide Safety Division that acknowledged the bureau eliminated the forty fifth president’s journey paperwork from Mar-a-Lago. 

“That is how Faux Information works, people. Biden admin actively feeds half truths & lies that the media willingly amplifies—advancing a partisan narrative to assault Trump. @NorahODonnell, did your “supply” learn you this electronic mail? Did you trouble asking in the event that they certainly seized the passports?,” Budowich tweeted.

The embattled Night Information anchor, who additionally holds the vaunted title of managing editor, has been sliding deeper into third place within the scores behind “ABC World Information Tonight with David Muir” and “NBC Nightly Information with Lester Holt.”

Within the second quarter of the yr, which ended on June 20, O’Donnell’s present racked up 4.7 million whole viewers, trailing Holt’s 6.5 million and Muir’s 7.9 million, in response to Nielsen scores knowledge.

Within the weeks since, O’Donnell has sunk even decrease, ratcheting 4.4 million viewers in the newest week. Muir led the pack with 7.5 million, and Holt, who was on trip, nabbed 6.2 million viewers with Tom Llamas filling in for him.

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