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Ex-NBC Reporter: 'Shame' on Stephanopoulos for Clinton Donations

By    |   Friday, 15 May 2015 06:13 PM

Retired former NBC News reporter Ike Seamans says George Stephanopoulos of ABC News "did wrong" by giving $75,000 to the foundation of his former boss, President Bill Clinton, and then failing to disclose the charitable donations even as he reported on Hillary Clinton's 2016 presidential campaign.

"He may step down but, look, he worked with Clinton a long time," Seamans told "Newsmax Now" hosts John Bachman and Miranda Khan on Newsmax TV on Friday. "You just don't get rid of loyalties that easily. So, it's a shame on him. He did wrong."

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With news of the donations surfacing, Stephanopoulos made a brief on-air apology Friday to viewers of "Good Morning America," which he anchors. He also has agreed to step aside as a moderator of Republican presidential primary debates.

ABC brass said on Friday they stand behind Stephanopoulos as host of GMA and "This Week." But pressure is building on the former Bill Clinton campaign aide and White House adviser to recuse himself from all coverage of the 2016 presidential election.

Seamans pointed out that liberal newsman Keith Olbermann was once suspended from MSNBC for donating to Democratic political campaigns.

"I'm sure that others do it," Seamans said of journalists' making political contributions. "But for a guy like Stephanopoulos to do this — of course you recall that he was and is a Clinton loyalist."

Turning to his former network, Seamans said erstwhile colleague Tom Brokaw was right in April to call for patience from the public as the network investigates Brian Williams, Brokaw's suspended successor on the "NBC Nightly News" anchor desk.

"This investigation is supposed to run six months," said Seamans. "It's run three; let it go out."

Seamans noted that Brokaw is the only NBC News figure to speak publicly and on the record about Williams, who is accused of embellishing his journalistic exploits with made-up anecdotes.

"The reason is, in my opinion, he's the only one at NBC News right now that has the trust from the public," said Seamans. "He has integrity."

"The NBC executives had really handled this thing very ineptly," he added. "Brokaw is the face of NBC News, and that's why he's been trotted out."

Seamans also discussed the controversial scoop by journalist Seymour Hersh that chanllenges the official story of the U.S. raid that killed 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden. The White House is calling Hersh's account a fiction, but other reporters have come forward to back up his  claims, including that Pakistan authorized the raid.

Seamans called Hersh an "incredible investigative reporter" even as he struck a cautionary note about Hersh's approach to sourcing.

He was less impressed by the counter-claims emanating from the White House and a former CIA official, and challenged the government to disclose what it knows about the operation.

"Show us the reports. Show us what happened," said Seamans. "But that'll never happen. All of the information, as I understand it — every shred of it about the raid on bin Laden — is in the CIA under lock and key. And you know what? If my grandchildren see this report 50 years from now, I'll turn over in my grave.

"So, I don't put much stock in the statements that are being made about Hersh," he said. "At the same time, Hersh should source his stories better."

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Retired former NBC News reporter Ike Seamans says that George Stephanopoulos of ABC News "did wrong" by giving $75,000 to the foundation of his former boss, President Bill Clinton, and then failing to disclose the charitable donations even as he reported on...
george stephanopoulos, clinton, foundation, donations, reaction
Friday, 15 May 2015 06:13 PM
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