NPR Should Use ‘Precise’ Language To Avoid Mischaracterizing Mueller Report, Editor Says

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As reported by iMediaEthics, NPR public editor Elizabeth Jensen wrote an opinion piece that touches on the criticism the nonprofit organization received for its coverage of the Mueller report. In response, Jensen claims that NPR should be careful to remain reasonably skeptical about the contents of the report by using precise language. She stressed that as of now, the public only knows what Attorney General William Barr has said about the report, and not what the report actually says.

Jensen claims that many NPR listeners and readers were not happy with the organization’s coverage of the Mueller report. In particular, they believe that the March 26 All Things Considered report was too hasty in determining that President Trump was not guilty of collusion with Russia. While the report’s executive producer Carline Watson said that Mueller was clear that Trump’s team did not conspire with Russia, Jensen claims that NPR should have made it clear that this conclusion was based on Barr’s letter, not Mueller’s own words. Specifically, she claims that highlighting this distinction is something that is crucial for basic journalism.

“If NPR has not seen the report and has no more direct statement from Barr or Mueller, then NPR should cite its source, which is the Barr letter, not the special counsel’s report.”

Per NPR, Barr’s memo did include a quote from Mueller’s report.

“The Special Counsel’s investigation did not find that the Trump campaign or anyone associated with it conspired or coordinated with Russia in its efforts to influence the 2016 U.S. presidential election. As the report states: ‘[T]he investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.'”

But Jensen claims that the quote from the report is “less-than-categorical.”

As The Inquisitr reported, Democrats plan to vote Wednesday morning on releasing the full Mueller report on the Trump-Russia investigation. Although Barr said the redacted form of the report will be ready for release by mid-April or sooner, Democrats are pushing for the full version in the aim of transparency.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler claims that the new resolution will also authorize his panel to subpoena five individuals — including former Trump campaign chairman Steve Bannon and former White House communications director Hope Hicks — that failed to provide documents to the White House as part of its Trump probe. He claims that these documents are important for the special counsel investigation, meaning they do not have the privilege of refusing.