News & Politics

'They Never Say Sorry': MSNBC's Rachel Maddow Chides the New York Times over Pseudo-Apology on Trump Election Story

"This is a big moment in American journalism."

Photo Credit: MSNBC

It seems the New York Times may be trying to express some regrets about one of its most controversial articles in recent years.

MSNBC's Rachel Maddow pointed out that in a portion of the Times' blockbuster and extremely detailed Wednesday report about the origins of the Russia investigation — called by the codename "Crossfire Hurricane" — the outlet gave something close to a mea culpa. It relates to the story headlined "Investigating Donald Trump, F.B.I Sees No Clear Link to Russia," which was published just over a week before the 2016 election. 

The story noted that the FBI had started an investigation into potential collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign during the summer of 2016, yet it said there was no "conclusive or direct link between Mr. Trump and the Russian government." But we now know the probe began with a pretty definitive link: Trump campaign staffer George Papadopoulos made contact with a man claiming to be a Russian agent who said he had hacked emails related to Hillary Clinton.

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In the Times' new report, the outlet acknowledges that the "key fact" of the article, that the FBI had a broad investigation into the Trump campaign, was buried in the 10th paragraph. It goes on to note that the tone and headline were misleading. 

"They never say sorry," Maddow said of the new report. But the part described "is, I think, supposed to function as an apology," she said.

She added: "This is a big moment in American journalism."

Watch the clip below:

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Cody Fenwick is a reporter and editor. Follow him on Twitter @codytfenwick.