Tag Archives: Anderson Cooper

Anderson Cooper Calls Out CNN Reporter On Planned Parenthood Videos

At the conclusion of a 10-minute CNN segment on the results of an investigation into the veracity of the undercover Planned Parenthood videos, anchor Anderson Cooper was still unclear on the facts.

“They keep saying the videos were heavily edited. Were they, and were they deceptively edited?” Cooper asks CNN senior investigative correspondent Drew Griffin on “Anderson Cooper 360” Tuesday. “I mean, besides the insertion of pictures, which were not necessarily from Planned Parenthood?”

Cooper is referring to Planned Parenthood’s allegation that the videos released by The Center for Medical Progress (CMP) are “highly edited,” which has been picked up and repeated by mainstream media outlets. CNN put Griffin on the story to “try to find out which side is telling the truth,” a narrator explains at the start of the highly edited segment. (RELATED: How The New York Times Is Covering The Planned Parenthood Videos)

In response to Cooper’s question at the conclusion of the segment, Griffin admits “the only thing we found” is that CMP inserted images of fetuses meant to illustrate the testimony of a former Planned Parenthood employee in a manner that could be confusing.

But he allows Planned Parenthood’s allegation the videos are “highly edited” to stand, disregarding relevant facts and critical analysis to suggest the matter is still up for debate. (RELATED: Key Points From The First Nine Planned Parenthood Videos)

The bulk of the heavily edited CNN segment consists of Griffin grilling CMP founder David Daleiden about the source of the disputed images. Daleiden acknowledges CMP got the images from a video posted by a woman to memorialize her stillborn son and from an online abortion photo archive, but he points out the fetuses shown are the same gestational age as those described in the video.

Griffin also presses Planned Parenthood Executive Vice President Dawn Laguens on whether clinics haggle over the compensation for aborted fetuses — as seen in the videos — and on the nature of the payments. He shows her a specific clip of haggling over the payment, and points out the clip is not edited when she tries to dismiss his question.

“All of the tapes and footage David Daleiden has released out into the world has been heavily edited,” Laguens told CNN. “And I think pretty thoroughly discredited.”

Griffin does not ask her to explain what “highly edited” means or attempt himself to define the term she says “thoroughly discredits” the videos. He also ignores Daleiden’s legitimate point that the source of the images in dispute is to some extent irrelevant.

Griffin concludes that it’s Planned Parenthood’s word versus CMP’s word, so it’s up to members of Congress able to access all of the footage to “decide for themselves” whether it’s highly edited.

CNN’s segment never mentions the fact that a firm commissioned by Planned Parenthood to perform a forensic analysis of the videos found they are not “substantively edited.” A separate firm commissioned by a pro-life group also performed a forensic analysis of the videos and also concluded they are not substantively edited.

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CNN Reportedly Planning Less-Confrontational Format for Democratic Debate

CNN anchor Anderson Cooper said on Sunday’s episode of Reliable Sources on CNN that he is preparing more substantive and less confrontational debate questions than the type Jake Tapper asked Republicans during the network’s GOP presidential debate.

I’m always uncomfortable with that notion of setting people up in order to kind of promote some sort of a face-off. I think these are all serious people. This is a serious debate. They want to talk about the issues. And I want to give them an opportunity to do that,” said Cooper according to The Chicago Tribune.

The level of humility and seriousness in this debate will be stark compared to what has been happening in the Republican debates, and that’s a good thing for our party,” said Democratic strategist Stephanie Cutter.

Washington Examiner notes that Jake Tapper, the moderator of CNN’s September 16 GOP presidential debate, said prior to that contest that he was “trying to craft questions that, in most cases, pit candidates against the other.

Cooper said that his decision to devise a less-confrontational format was motivated by the tone of the Sanders and Clinton campaigns. “[Bernie Sanders] is not going to go after [front-runner] Hillary Clinton by name, he’s not going to criticize her. And I see no reason that Hillary Clinton would do that with any of the candidates,” asserted Cooper.

[RELATED: DONEGAN: If GOP Debate Stage Can Fit 11, Let Third Parties In General Election Debates]

However, University of Virginia Center for Politics political analyst Geoffrey Skelley suggested that the lower-polling candidates in the debate might benefit from going on the offensive, “On the campaign trail [the Democratic candidates have] been a little reticent to overly criticize [Clinton] but they might if they realize this is their one shot. Sanders actually might benefit in that sense that if he is in a position where the three lower-tier guys are attacking Clinton.

Democratic strategist and CNN analyst Paul Begala said, “Let’s be honest: Donald Trump truly is a ratings machine. Twenty-three million people did not tune in to [the Republican debate] to see Marco Rubio. So, unless the Democrats can talk one of the Kardashians into running, don’t expect the Democrats’ ratings to approach the Republicans’.

CNN’s televised Democratic debate, the first of the season, is set to kick off on Tuesday night at 9 p.m. EST at the Wynn Las Vegas hotel and casino. The contest will feature former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), former U.S. Senator Jim Webb (D-Va.), former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, and former Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee.

The contest is being co-presented by Facebook and, in addition to moderator Anderson Cooper, will feature questions by correspondent Dana Bash, anchor Don Lemon, and CNN en Espanol anchor Juan Carlos.

Democratic presidential candidate and Harvard professor Lawrence Lessig, who claims to have collected over $1 million in campaign contributions, will not be included in the debate as he failed to obtain at least 1 percent support in the specific polls outlined in CNN’s debate qualifications. However, Lessig was not included as a response in most of those polls.

If Vice President Joe Biden were to announce his candidacy today, he would qualify to participate under the debate’s criteria, meaning a last minute surprise entry by Biden could be within the realm of possibility.

For more election coverage, click here.