NY Post: Stephanopoulos gets $105M from ABC

posted at 8:41 am on May 19, 2015 by Ed Morrissey

When it emerged that George Stephanopoulos had failed to disclose $75,000 in donations to the Clinton Foundation to either the network or viewers while repeatedly covering the organization, ABC News declared that it would stand by its “chief news anchor.” The New York Post’s Emily Smith explains that they have one hundred and five million reasons to ignore their own declared standards and practices. ABC renewed Stephanopoulos’ contract last year for more than double what NBC paid Brian Williams … and it’s working out just as well:

ABC has plenty of reasons to be freaking out over the George Stephanopoulos scandal — $105 million, to be exact.

The “Good Morning America” and “This Week” anchor renewed his contract last year for $105 million, TV-industry sources told The Post Monday.

The seven-year deal — which dwarfs the five-year, $50 million contract scored by since-suspended NBC rival Brian Williams — was supposed to keep Stephanopoulos in front of ABC’s cameras through 2021.

Stephanopoulos’ contract even made the Post’s front page, in a relatively subdued manner. The headline says it best — “How George Pays the Bill”:

Here’s a thought: perhaps the networks should pay less for news readers and more for, y’know, actual reporters. Smith writes that ABC execs got “blindsided” by the scandal, but that’s just a case of willful blindness. The network hired Stephanopoulos straight out of the Clinton administration, where he’d played the role of attack dog for the Clintons for years, and within just a few years recast him as a straight-up newsman.

Interestingly, with their rejection of their own standards on disclosure for Stephanopoulos, ABC now seems to be signaling that people shouldn’t consider him a journalist at all. A couple of his former colleagues seem to agree, as I note in my column for The Week:

Jeff Greenfield told Brian Stelter on CNN’s Reliable Sources on Sunday that the network should really consider recusing Stephanopoulos from any coverage of the upcoming presidential election. “[Y]ou wonder to what extent Stephanopoulos was trying to repair relations with the Clintons because the book he wrote in 1999, All Too Human, really put him on the outs with the Clintons,” Greenfield said. “It simply is an indication that very smart people can sometimes be very foolish.”

Carole Simpson, the former anchor of ABC News’ weekend edition who retired almost a decade ago to teach journalism at Emerson College, expressed her disgust “that, again, the public’s trust in the media is being challenged and frayed because of the actions of some of the top people in the business.” The problem was more fundamental in the case of Stephanopoulos. “While he did try to separate himself from his political background to become a journalist,” Simpson flatly stated, “he really isn’t a journalist.”

Oddly enough, both ABC News and George Stephanopoulos seem to agree on this point. The latter’s weak apology claimed that full disclosure of financial connections to the subject of a story somehow qualifies as going the extra mile, when most journalists consider it the first step, short of outright recusal. ABC News, meanwhile, refuses to hold Stephanopoulos to the standard it applies to actual journalists, which makes it clear that the news division sees Stephanopoulos as some other kind of entity altogether.

So let’s be honest. George Stephanopoulos is not a journalist. He just plays one on TV.

Now ABC is shocked, shocked to find hackery in the newsroom after spending years and a fortune grooming a political hack to call their “chief news anchor.” ABC News, this Captain Louis Renault award is all yours:

Update: A fair question from the comments — “What difference does the amount of money he gets paid make?” — deserves to be addressed. The most direct answer is that, like athletes, newscasters should get paid what they can make in the free market. But it does explain why ABC News suddenly seems so shy about applying their “standards” to their top dog, which is the point of the NY Post article. It’s also a rather eye-popping amount for someone who just transitioned to “journalist” at one network 13 years ago.

 


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Comments

…but then I despise Stephanacropolis almost as much as hypocrites..
Somme 1916 on May 19, 2015 at 10:33 AM

Hardly a smack down. And thanks for proving my point regarding the distinctly unBiblical nature of the den of vipers the Reverend Morrissey cultivates here.
Somme 1916 on May 19, 2015 at 11:22 AM

As it is oft said, it takes one to know one.

Your hypocrisy, with your attack on Ed, is so blatant it defies logic.

You are more than willing to call names, attack and go on nonsensical diatribes, but nobody else that comments on here should be allowed to say anything against your position, is that about the gist of your “holier than thou” rant?

Neitherleftorright on May 19, 2015 at 12:31 PM

Hardly a smack down. And thanks for proving my point regarding the distinctly unBiblical nature of the den of vipers the Reverend Morrissey cultivates here.

Somme 1916 on May 19, 2015 at 11:22 AM

What I love about this claim is that it all depends on one thing: whether Ed was right in calling you out as a hypocrite. If he was right, then it’s absolutely a smack down.

So, in an ongoing story about the corruption that is Hillary Clinton, and how a supposedly neutral reporter — not that anyone with any sense believed he was really neutral — your one contribution is to call out the blogger for supposedly being envious.

Not only were you nailed for your hypocrisy, you’re also engaging in the logical fallacy of ad hominem attacks.

But I do give you points for style, for the sheer smarminess of your trolling.

There Goes the Neighborhood on May 19, 2015 at 12:41 PM

ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, MSNBC, PBS are propagandists for the Left.
They are the fifth column.
The enemy within.
Nothing more. Nothing less.

justltl on May 19, 2015 at 12:42 PM

As for ABC and their paying $105 million to Stephanpoulos they are free to make mistakes and they have done so. In the entertainment world of greed and fame, believing that you can’t live without a specific personality is pervasive. The really odd thing is that broadcast TV is dying and yet ABC is doubling down on a personality.

Broadcast network news is about two things now days, quasi-entertainment and continuing the indoctrination that was begun in schools and universities. To that end Stephanopoulos seems valuable to ABC.

Neitherleftorright on May 19, 2015 at 12:42 PM

Ed given Stephalocaucus’s importance as lead Clintonista propagandstrategist, the value of his gift/bought position, and the incestuousness of the DNC crime syndicate to its media complex how can anyone ever decisively attribute money on their books?
Was that actually ABC booty, how much does he actually get to keep or is it all just slated thru his laundrying it? The rabbit hole is endless here. Good of the driveby’s to momentarily notice it though.

onomo on May 19, 2015 at 12:51 PM

Make no mistake about it: if ABC News wanted to void his contract and fire Stephanopoulous they could. Sure, they would have to pay some sort of a buyout or risk getting sued by him, but they could do it. The truth is ABC News wants to keep him because their bench is thin, journalistic ethics be damned.

Captain Kirock on May 19, 2015 at 1:05 PM

re: “What difference does the amount of money he gets paid make?”

It’s not unlikely that he’s being paid for his ability to score interviews with top Democrat people—which he gets by leveraging his Clinton/Dem address book—and then doing biased anti-GOP and pro-Dem interviews. His high salary may be payment for his willingness to violate journalistic integrity.

Vik_R on May 19, 2015 at 1:07 PM

Hardly a smack down. And thanks for proving my point regarding the distinctly unBiblical nature of the den of vipers the Reverend Morrissey cultivates here.

Somme 1916 on May 19, 2015 at 11:22 AM

Attacking my religious faith in every comment may amuse you, but it’s also the very trollery you claim to decry. I suggest that your time will be better spent elsewhere, brother. Peace be with you.

Ed Morrissey on May 19, 2015 at 11:30 AM

A+

Del Dolemonte on May 19, 2015 at 1:20 PM

Zeroes matter

$105,000,000 says more than $105 million.

As for stephy, what I don’t understand is how these people can sleep at all, let alone at night.

Disgusting, dishonest.

MN J on May 19, 2015 at 1:20 PM

Zeroes matter

$105,000,000 says more than $105 million.

As for stephy, what I don’t understand is how these people can sleep at all, let alone at night.

Disgusting, dishonest.

MN J on May 19, 2015 at 1:20 PM

If you made that money, you wouldn’t care what a poster on HotAir thinks about you.

He is surrounded by people kissing his ring…he has power of persuasion, when he is at a party, people are catering to him, bowing to him, he was one of the most powerful men in the media…so he slept well at night because of two things…one, he was raised in the clinton slime pit, and two, he has everyone he needs catering to every bit of his needs…at least he used to.

right2bright on May 19, 2015 at 1:24 PM

Well done, Ed.

John the Libertarian on May 19, 2015 at 1:49 PM

Meh. That is about 50 Clinton speaches per year. Sounds about right. Or $223,881 per inch per year.

hazchic on May 19, 2015 at 1:54 PM

Somme 1916, with any luck, Ed will administer a coup de grâce via the banhammer.

pain train on May 19, 2015 at 11:49 AM

Heh, I think he did!

22044 on May 19, 2015 at 2:04 PM

“$105 million…seven-year deal”

This just in: ABC has arranged for Hillary to be their co-chief news anchor during the eight years of her presidency.

She is rumored to be paid more than double what Steffie’s deal calls for.

ABC has also signed Bill to be the network’s co-co-chief news anchor. He is slated to get quadruple Steffie’s $105 million.

ABC also has inked a deal with Chelsea to be associate-co-co-chief anchor.

The Chelsea deal clocks in at something approaching $1 billion (because the deal was made on the come, in anticipation that Chelsea will inherit the presidency after her mother passes away in about 30 years).

But not to be outdone, ABC has signed Hillary to a second contract that covers the exact same eight-year period as the first contract, only this one pays Hillary $10 billion.

ABC is said to not yet at this point know what role Hillary will play under the terms of the parallel contract, but sources reveal she’ll be doing something really special and good and heartwarming and intimate that we’ll all just totally love and be all gooey-eyed over.

FlameWarrior on May 19, 2015 at 2:04 PM

And do remember, the parent company of ABC has deep interests in changing copyright law. To them this sort of stuff is chump change…and they want to make sure no one screws with da Mouse.

ajacksonian on May 19, 2015 at 2:16 PM

Clinton Foundation donors are lying criminals

SpongePuppy on May 19, 2015 at 2:19 PM

Well, after all, they were all “dead broke” when they left the White House. ;)

PattyJ on May 19, 2015 at 2:24 PM

I just deleted a clever comment.

Schadenfreude on May 19, 2015 at 2:33 PM

I’m generally against banning…but it’s Ed’s site, so fair play if he wants to drop the hammer on ad-hom’ers like Somme 1916.
(I had renalin telling me yesterday my Mom wanted to abort me..so, you know…peace be with him, too.)

verbaluce on May 19, 2015 at 12:22 PM

Awww…did you get sand in your jiney?

fossten on May 19, 2015 at 2:44 PM

(I had renalin telling me yesterday my Mom wanted to abort me..so, you know…peace be with him, too.)
verbaluce on May 19, 2015 at 12:22 PM

Does renalin know your mother?

Neitherleftorright on May 19, 2015 at 2:55 PM

What an insane amount of money for such a clown. Talk about getting paid for nothing, all he does is read off a prompter and shill. At least athletes have some kind of skill. ABC should be embarrassed they pay anyone that amount considering their less than stellar ratings.

Madd_Addam on May 19, 2015 at 3:38 PM

Make no mistake about it: if ABC News wanted to void his contract and fire Stephanopoulous they could. Sure, they would have to pay some sort of a buyout or risk getting sued by him, but they could do it. The truth is ABC News wants to keep him because their bench is thin, journalistic ethics be damned.

Captain Kirock on May 19, 2015 at 1:05 PM

If the bigshots at ABC were thinking long term–and cared at all about the network’s credibility–they would have seized the opportunity to get rid of a man who is nothing more than a Clinton crony/apologist when the $75,000 donation news first broke.

They would have saved themselves a lot of unnecessary drama.

Instead there is a steady drip, drip, drip, which anyone with a brain could have seen coming. Does ABC really want to go to the mat for “journalist” George? His transgressions are worse than those of Brian Williams; he’s damaged goods.

Too late to save your credibility ABC, but you might want to consider mitigating the damage.

Because it appears there are now two choices: fire him now, or fire him later.

Meredith on May 19, 2015 at 4:30 PM

Hillary speaking to Bill: I don’t care that’s he’s been loyal for almost 25 years, that little s*** is making $105 million and he only gave us $75,000?!!

Athos on May 19, 2015 at 5:49 PM

only the tidy bowl man can save Hillary now.

SpongePuppy on May 19, 2015 at 5:51 PM

To be fair: ABC is probably paying Stephanopoulos the market rate. The competition between ABC, NBC, and CBS is probably fierce for a high-position Clinton crony.

Axeman on May 19, 2015 at 5:51 PM

Sorry, Ed, but there are no “reporters” out there to pay. At least not in the old, accepted sense of those who sniff out the news and report the facts straight. That breed died with the explosion of Journalism Schools after Watergate.

~

The old tradition was reporters were high school grads at best, often starting out as copy boys at newspapers, finally given soft assignments to cover like the garden club or a civic awards banquet. Once they could do that with the “Ws” concisely, then and only then did they graduate slowly to bigger stories. Human interest, then the local crime blotter, finally the best got to cover City Hall.

Post Watergate, students wanted to be Woodward and Bernstein – or actually, Redford and Hoffman. There were few J schools then, and most classes at most colleges were taught out of the English Department by the faculty members not smart enough to teach Shakespeare or 20th Century American Lit.

~

Nothing creates supply like demand, so before you knew it, Journalism majors were flooding the market, taught by faculties that rarely included anyone who ever actually worked a day as a journalist. Editors jumped at the chance to hire college grads at the same salary they were paying their home-grown reporters, but had to sacrifice the molding of the new class. That had been done by their leftist professors.

They didn’t come to report the facts; they came to “make a difference.” A leftist difference. And here we are today.

Adjoran on May 19, 2015 at 5:57 PM

In a society we didn’t like Stephanopoulos would be called a propagandist.

Why is it so easy to see in places like Russia, but we fail to see it in our own?

Network Media is government propaganda. Pure and simple.

petunia on May 19, 2015 at 6:03 PM

That sawed off, greasy little troll is making $105M freaking dollars? For what?

V7_Sport on May 19, 2015 at 6:17 PM

George you miserable little twerp! ABC off my watch list. No more networks to watch, f##kum!

woodhull on May 19, 2015 at 6:24 PM

A fair question from the comments — “What difference does the amount of money he gets paid make?” — deserves to be addressed.

That this brown nosing weasel gets paid $105 million bucks for being a little turd on a plate just popped the last hair off my head. All that we need now is a lecture on income inequality from this creep.

It’s hard to believe in a loving higher power when a slobbering little sycophant, a little yes man toadie like this can make more money than all of us reading this put together by being a little, hypocritical shill for soft socialism. Excuse me while I effing puke.

V7_Sport on May 19, 2015 at 6:29 PM

That sawed off, greasy little troll is making $105M freaking dollars? For what?

V7_Sport on May 19, 2015 at 6:17 PM

I know, right?

Judge_Dredd on May 19, 2015 at 6:39 PM

I just deleted a clever comment.

Schadenfreude on May 19, 2015 at 2:33 PM

I’ll give you 20 dollars if you let me use it for free.

SpongePuppy on May 19, 2015 at 7:23 PM

Update: A fair question from the comments — “What difference does the amount of money he gets paid make?” — deserves to be addressed.

They already established what he is…they were just haggling over the price…

ajacksonian on May 19, 2015 at 7:26 PM

stepanofolist is a Clinton shill for the Clinton Crime syndicate.

of course the MSM is complicit in paying this tool to spew smoke up hillaries butt hole.

Dear gawd that’s nasty. sorry. I grossed myself out.

SpongePuppy on May 19, 2015 at 7:33 PM

stefanopolisp would be the most zealous book burner for big brother. Oops. that’s two different novels.

SpongePuppy on May 19, 2015 at 7:35 PM

stefanopolips is a greedy little puke who has the soul of lucifer rimmed in his anus.

SpongePuppy on May 19, 2015 at 7:37 PM

Heh, I think he did!

22044 on May 19, 2015 at 2:04 PM

Somme, we hardly knew ye!

pain train on May 19, 2015 at 8:04 PM

ABC paid Stephanopolis $105 Million for the same reason Stephanopolous paid the Clintons $75,000: to get access to the Clintons. ABC could hardly pay Bill & Hillary themselves – that is a bridge too far even for Daily Kos – but if any TV figure on the planet could get preferred access to the Big Arkansas Dogs, it would be George S.

Zumkopf on May 19, 2015 at 9:16 PM

But it does explain why ABC News suddenly seems so shy about applying their “standards” to their top dog, which is the point of the NY Post article.

Who hired who, who paid who? To look at the text of the financial exchange, ABC paid Stephanforclinton a huge amount of money. Stephanforclinton paid a huge amount of money to the Clinton Foundation.

The subtext of that, however, is that the Clinton’s bought something all the way around.

Lourdes on May 19, 2015 at 10:40 PM

ABC News declared that it would stand by its “chief news anchor.”

Hillary’s “proud of the work the Foundation has done.”

Think of these exchanges in the opposite flow from how they’re reported. It sure looks like “the work the [Clinton] Foundation has done” includes a lot of media buys.

Lourdes on May 19, 2015 at 10:43 PM

I’d love to see Georgie’s financials. When his hundreds of millions are direct deposited, how much stays in his account and how much diverts into the Clintons account. The Clintons greed and lawlessness always overrules their smarts, so this would be a sure way to see how much money is being laundered. Too bad the bulldog, Al Capone era IRS has been turned into slobbering, leftist lapdogs, fighting Conservatives not crime.

AppraisHer on May 19, 2015 at 10:54 PM

Ed, I’m glad you’ve changed out the YouTube for the Captain Louis Renault Award. The other one had very bad sound.

unclesmrgol on May 19, 2015 at 11:09 PM

1% er !!!11!1!!

tbear44 on May 20, 2015 at 12:10 AM

They already established what he is…they were just haggling over the price…

ajacksonian on May 19, 2015 at 7:26 PM

lol

AesopFan on May 20, 2015 at 2:09 AM

So Disney has given him a sweet deal; but,
How much has he been paid by the Clinton Foundation/Global Initiative for his services to them?

Another Drew on May 20, 2015 at 2:48 AM

I still can’t believe ABC let Jake Tapper go, in favor of giving This Week to Stephanopoulos. What an idiotic decision!

Bobbi on May 21, 2015 at 8:42 AM

ABC knows very well that the $105M is not for services to journalism, but for strong relationships and consideration in the next Clinton administration they are seeking to bring about. George would be a key player, of course.

The embarrassing fact is that now everyone can see that ABC is no longer a news organization (perhaps has not been for some time) and that George just a small step away from “Baghdad Bob”, the absurd TV anchor of the Hussain regime (Saddam, not Barack).

I wonder if Disney stockholders are fine with this sideways move of ABC from news to lobbying. Was it discussed at their last board meeting?

virgo on May 22, 2015 at 8:59 PM