“”Since you’re the one who published the dossier in the first place don’t you have an obligation to kind of tie a bow in the story and tell us what happened in the end?” Carlson asked BuzzFeed’s Ben Smith on “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”
“I guess we don’t see tying bows as an obligation. We did cover the hell out of that. In particular that aspect,” Smith told Carlson. “
Carlson asked Smith why BuzzFeed hasn’t followed up on the now debunked information in the initial report and published dossier.
“You’re a journalist, not simply a guy who runs a platform. You’re not running Medium or Google, you’re running a news site,” Carlson told Smith. “So you inject these claims into the public sphere and then you don’t follow up.”
Smith defended BuzzFeed’s initial report and it’s follow up coverage.
In the report published January 17, BuzzFeed alleged their information was “the first known example of Trump telling a subordinate to lie directly.”
Cohen said last Wednesday during a House Oversight Committee hearing that the president did not directly direct him to lie, contradicting the report.
“Mr. Trump did not directly tell me to lie to Congress. That’s not how he operates,” Cohen said.
The initial report cited anonymous sources and prompted Mueller’s office to react, something Mueller and his investigative team had declined to do since they began the investigation.
Trump also criticized BuzzFeed’s reporting in January on Twitter, calling it a “sad day for journalism.”
Carlson pressed Smith on why he refused to admit the information has been debunked.
“Here you have Cohen and the Mueller investigation debunking the so called ‘bombshell’ that you ran in January and you’re refusing to admit it has been debunked,” Carlson told Smith.
Smith responded by pointing out that Cohen also said at the hearing that “in his way [Trump] was telling me to lie.”
‘But that’s not what you said,” Carlson told Smith.
Smith continued to defend the wording of the BuzzFeed piece and once again defended the reporting.
“It is not to me totally crazy that he should be expected to interpret his boss’s words,” Smith said.