“60 Minutes” correspondent Sharyn Alfonsi responded on Sunday to backlash against her debunked story accusing Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis of corruption.
The moment: Appearing at the end of the first show since last week’s hit job aired, Alfonsi chose not to acknowledge that her reporting was shoddy, deceptive and apparently false.
- Instead, she read aloud from viewer comments for and against the story, which CBS has defended despite criticism from even left-leaning fact checkers.
The reaction: Conservative commentators on Twitter were unimpressed by Alfonsi’s non-apology.
NewsBusters editor Brent Baker noted: “She didn’t acknowledge doing anything wrong.”
Others mocked Alfonsi for quoting a “retired newsman” as among the viewers that she said had “applauded the story.”
“Our outrageous and unethical reporting is actually ok because randos on the internet liked it’ has gotta be a new low for ’60 Minutes,'” quipped GOP communications expert Matt Whitlock.
National Review’s Charles C. W. Cooke argued in an essay that expecting CBS to apologize misunderstands the state of contemporary journalism.
- “The ugly truth here is that CBS feels no need to apologize or self-correct because CBS knows that it has the mob on its side,” he wrote.
- “Critics who hope to see some resignations at CBS had better hope that someone involved in the production said something rude on the Internet in 1997, because, if they didn’t, there is no chance whatsoever of repercussions. The story has the right cast and the wrong victim — and that’s all there is to it.”