More Questions for ABC

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.


See my report on questions about how ABC handled the Debat matter here. In the meantime, I have more questions for ABC:

How did ABC choose to use Debat as a consultant, and also on the blog as a reporter, also sometimes citing him as a source?

Did ABC inform its viewers and readers that Debat had a Pentagon contract? How clear was ABC in telling readers/viewers about Debat’s multiple paid affiliations?

What other consultants have this sort of arrangement with ABC? Will ABC be more transparent in the future about whether its sources are being paid, what are the relevant other potential conflicts of interest in terms of paid other appointments and contracts?

Why is ABC only sending an investigator to Pakistan to investigate Debat’s reports now? History shows that people who misreprsent their resumes tend to misrepresent lots of other things as well. Why do my sources say ABC did not conduct a more extensive investigation of his work when it asked him to resign back in June? Why had it not contacted until now other reporters who could help investigate his reports?

In vetting or second sourcing the information that Alexis brought to the network, were ABC News resources outside of the Ross unit deployed? e.g. the Justice, State or Pentagon correspondents?

Did Alexis ever appear on camera as an expert/analyst for a story on which he was also the source?

How was he hired? Who introduced him to ABC?

How is ABC investigating the information that Alexis reported from Iran and Pakistan? Is it being investigated by the Ross unit only or reporters outside of that unit?

One good thing has according to sources apparently come of the recent reports, including Riche’s. Finally, three months after dismissing him, ABC finally appears to be undertaking a serious investigation of the accuracy of the reports. It’s just curious it didn’t do so when it learned of misrepresentations with his CV back in June when it asked him to resign.

THE TRUTH IS...

what drives Mother Jones' team of 50-plus journalists. The truth is powerful, as evidenced by how hard those with something to hide, or profit to gain, seek to discredit it. The truth, stated boldly and reported meticulously, is what draws so many readers to Mother Jones.

And the truth is, going into the final 4 days of the year we still needed to raise $TK to hit our $350,000 goal and start 2021 on track. It's nerve-wracking, wondering if the big spike we normally see at the end of December is going to be another thing that doesn't go as planned in 2020, or worse, if, now that Donald Trump is set to leave the White House (for longer than a taxpayer-funded golf trip to a property he owns), folks might be pulling back from fighting for the truth and a democracy and think the hard work is done.

It's not, and if you can right now, please consider a year-end donation to support our team's fearless nonprofit journalism so we can close that big fundraising gap and finish the year strong, ready for all that's ahead in 2021. Whether you can give $5 or $500, it all matters in keeping us charging hard, and we'd be grateful.

payment methods

THE TRUTH IS...

what drives Mother Jones' team of 50-plus journalists. The truth is powerful, as evidenced by how hard those with something to hide, or profit to gain, seek to discredit it. The truth, stated boldly and reported meticulously, is what draws so many readers to Mother Jones.

And the truth is, going into the final 4 days of the year we still needed to raise $TK to hit our $350,000 goal and start 2021 on track. It's nerve-wracking, wondering if the big spike we normally see at the end of December is going to be another thing that doesn't go as planned in 2020, or worse, if, now that Donald Trump is set to leave the White House (for longer than a taxpayer-funded golf trip to a property he owns), folks might be pulling back from fighting for the truth and a democracy and think the hard work is done.

It's not, and if you can right now, please consider a year-end donation to support our team's fearless nonprofit journalism so we can close that big fundraising gap and finish the year strong, ready for all that's ahead in 2021. Whether you can give $5 or $500, it all matters in keeping us charging hard, and we'd be grateful.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate