Journalist From Watergate Fame Questioned About Cohen Report

Carl Bernstein and CNN reporters criticized for story about Trump's longtime lawyer after key source recanted.

carl bernstein
Michael Cohen, (L) former personal lawyer and confidante for President Donald Trump, exits the United States District Court Southern District of New York on May 30, 2018 in New York City. (Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images)
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Carl Bernstein, the former Washington Post reporter who became a journalism legend more than four decades ago when he and Post colleague Bob Woodward broke stories about the Watergate scandal, has used anonymous sources for some of his biggest scoops. But Bernstein’s latest blockbuster story has come under heavy criticism because of one major question: Is it accurate?

Bernstein now works at CNN. He, along with three other reporters, broke what seemed like a huge story on July 26. They cited “sources with knowledge” in the story, which reported that Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s longtime lawyer and fixer, claimed he was ready to tell special counsel Robert S. Mueller III about Trump’s involvement in a fateful meeting at Trump Tower during the 2016 presidential campaign. CNN reported that Cohen was prepared to tell Mueller that Trump knew about the meeting in advance and approved it, writes The Post. 

But since the story broke, one of the story’s sources, Cohen’s lawyer, Lanny Davis, has recanted.

“I made a mistake and I have to take the hit,” Davis said in an interview with The Post, commenting again on the issue. “I should have been much clearer [in the original interview with CNN]. I should have said. ‘I can’t answer that question. Don’t depend on me. I’m not confident’ ” about what Cohen might have known. “I don’t blame Bernstein or [his co-writers]. I blame me.”

Bernstein has stressed that his story relied on multiple sources, not just Davis.

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