Accuracy in Media

Much is being made about the impeachment proceedings begun by the Democratic-majority House of Representatives by Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-N.Y.) in the House Judiciary Committee. But adding more fuel to the fire was the revelation that President Trump pushed Ukraine to investigate former vice president Joe Biden and his son Hunter about business ties to Ukraine.

The White House released an unredacted transcript of the Trump’s phone call with the Ukrainian president, Volodymr Zelensky. Trump asked Zelensky to work with his personal lawyer, former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani, and U.S. Attorney General William Barr. Trump believed that the Biden’s business dealings in Ukraine reeked of corruption, which led to the request to Zelensky.

Both the mainstream media and Democratic Party lawmakers clamor for impeachment proceedings to take place, even though the process started by House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Nadler. Nadler was at odds with House Democratic leadership, such as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on whether to call it an impeachment inquiry or impeachment investigation, which have different legal ramifications.

Pelosi, who resisted calls for pushing for the president’s impeachment in the past, agreed that it was inevitable that impeachment proceedings take place after news of Trump’s phone call with the Ukrainian president made waves.

CNN went all-in on the Ukraine-impeachment connection, publishing multiple articles and analyses on how it could proceed and what the next steps could be. One article’s headline read, “Trump pushed Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden, transcript shows,” and it specifically referred to how the transcript of the phone call affected Democratic support for impeachment. Another article cited a Washington Post report that Giuliani is more involved in the Ukraine controversy than other administration officials. The cable news network published an analysis by its editor-at-large, Chris Cillizza, who said the transcript of the phone call “is pretty darn close to a smoking gun.”

CNN is also publishing live updates on the impeachment proceedings.

However, there was no mention of the likelihood of impeachment getting through the Republican-majority Senate in any of CNN’s articles, live updates, or analyses. Although it is likely that the Democratic-majority House of Representatives passes articles of impeachment against Trump, it would be unlikely that the president’s own party lawmakers would turn against their 2020 presidential candidate and incumbent in the White House.

If CNN was interested in accurate news reporting, noting the political landscape and unlikelihood of impeachment passing the Senate would be a good start.

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