CNN Ignores Opening Statements in Senate Judiciary Hearing on IG Report

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) / Getty Images
December 11, 2019

CNN broke from other major networks Wednesday and did not broadcast opening statements during the Senate Judiciary Committee's hearing on the recently released DOJ inspector general's report.

The network only showed a brief segment of Sen. Lindsey Graham's (R., S.C.) statement, during which he discussed Russian interference in the 2016 election, and displayed video of the hearing without audio while reporters and pundits discussed the impeachment inquiry. The network did not show any of Sen. Dianne Feinstein's (D., Calif.) opening statement.

By contrast, MSNBC broadcasted Graham's opening statement for a little more than 20 minutes before cutting to a panel discussion. Fox News aired Graham's entire statement. MSNBC showed Feinstein's whole opening statement, which was significantly shorter than Graham's.

Both CNN and MSNBC eventually broadcasted Inspector General Michael Horowitz's opening statement.

Graham in his comments ripped media coverage of the inspector general's report and criticized the FBI's conduct in obtaining permission to surveil a member of Donald Trump's presidential campaign.

Graham said the media overlooked the FBI's errors because its misconduct did not fit their narrative, focusing instead on the finding that there was no political bias in the investigation. The report faulted the FBI for committing numerous "significant errors or omissions" in its application to surveil Trump aide Carter Page.

Both CNN and MSNBC previously opted to give full coverage to House Intelligence Committee chairman Rep. Adam Schiff's (D., Calif.) opening statements during the impeachment hearings held by his committee.