NPR should have “close[d] the loop” in its reporting on the State Deparment’s investigation of Hillary Clinton’s e-mails, public editor Elizabeth Jensen argued.
In an Oct. 23 column, Jensen called NPR’s lack of significant coverage of Sen. Chuck Grassley (R)’s letter stating the State Department said its investigation found “no persuasive evidence of systemic, deliberate mishandling of classified information” by Clinton “a particularly notable omission.”
iMediaEthics has written to NPR to ask for its response to Jensen’s commentary and criticism.
“NPR intensely covered the Clinton email issue prior to the 2016 election. And it covered this most recent development in the 3-year-old saga, but you wouldn’t know that from looking at NPR.org, as a reader pointed out to the Public Editor’s office. There’s no digital story. No newsmagazine report. Astute listeners would have heard reports in six newscasts, at 8 p.m., 9 p.m. and 11 p.m. (all ET) on Friday, Oct. 18, and at 2 a.m., 3 a.m. and 8 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 19. Newscast transcripts are not archived online, however.”
NPR vice president and executive editor Edith Chapin and vice president for news programming Sarah Gilbert and explained to Jensen the coverage decision was a matter of “stretched resources” and a heavy news cycle.
While Jensen acknowledged the news cycle was overloaded with reports on the impeachment inquiry, the G7, and Syria, she argued that NPR should have reported the conclusion of the investigation.
“The end of the State Department’s investigation is a final period on the whole saga that got so much attention in the lead-up to the 2016 election. I think NPR has an obligation here to close the loop after three years (or at least on the newsmagazine reports from Sept. 30),” she wrote.