Over at the Washington Examiner, Tiana Lowe poses an interesting question that I’ll confess hadn’t crossed my mind until now. It deals yet again with the allegations against Joe Biden brought forward by Tara Reade, including the recent, intriguing revelation about a phone call that Reade’s mother placed to Larry King’s television show back in 1993. (The same one I was discussing earlier today.) But Lowe’s query has less to do with Biden himself and any wrongs he may be guilty of and more to do with the response from CNN or lack thereof. After news of the allegations initially broke, virtually every other cable news network and major newspaper offered some coverage of the story, albeit generally in a manner very skeptical of Reade and filled with potential cover for Uncle Joe.
Remember that Reade first aired her recent and most serious charges against Biden on March 25th. For a solid month, up until this weekend, the hosts at CNN has virtually nothing to say about it an not a single article containing Reade’s name appeared on their website. After the Larry King Live story broke, CNN finally hit the topic, but perhaps only briefly. There was no mention of it on their Sunday morning shows yesterday.
That brings us to Lowe’s central theme. If you really wanted to do Biden a favor (and there’s scant doubt that most of the folks at CNN fall into that category), there was an easy and obvious way to do, just as the New York Times, the Washington Post and NBC News have done. Put the story out there, spin it as needed, declare that you’ve done your due diligence, and move along, allowing Reade’s claims to slowly die off from a lack of oxygen. But why didn’t CNN go that route?
A generous and even sensible reading of this call is that it confirms what Reade originally alleged in 2019, that Biden, as we’ve known he’s done for years, creepily touched her neck and generally invaded her personal space, albeit with no obvious intent of personal gratification, sexually or otherwise. Even if you’re the most die-hard Democrat in the media, it makes little sense why you wouldn’t just want to investigate and then exhaust the Reade allegation so it doesn’t hang over his head until Election Day. But after months of the media hedging on the Reade story, the specific Larry King Live episode apparently featuring Reade’s mother has inexplicably gone missing on CNN’s Google Play archives of the show.
All of which raises the question: What does CNN know that we don’t?
It’s a fair question. Reading all of Tiana’s analysis, she makes a very good point about the Reade allegations. Even with the addition of the Larry King tidbit, Reade’s most serious claims still generally fail the tests we normally apply to these types of ancient, nearly unprovable, “he said, she said” situations. We lack any sort of physical evidence or even a direct witness to the claimed attack. We would also normally be looking for multiple contemporaneously corroborating witnesses, of which Reade has a few, but far more of her former coworkers in Biden’s Senate office tell very different tales. We would also normally check for a consistent description of events by the victim over the years. Reade fails that test entirely.
With all that in mind, why wouldn’t CNN do precisely what the New York time and other liberal outlets have done? Interview her, along with any available witnesses for both sides and publish their findings. They could state that Biden definitely has a history of invading women’s personal spaces and making them “uncomfortable,” but never in a way signaling that he was seeking sexual gratification. Then simply note Reade’s changing tale over the years, and conclude that she has a right to tell her story, but they simply can’t find enough hard data to conclude that her version of events is accurate. At that point you can simply ignore Reade and if anyone complains about the lack of coverage you can simply point them to your previous investigation and say that there’s nothing new and relevant to add.
Surely the powers that be at CNN are aware of all this. They could have flushed the Reade allegations out of the public debate weeks ago, perhaps briefly revisiting it this weekend after the Larry King material came out. Why didn’t they? Is it conceivable that some of the reporters at CNN know, or at least suspect something that may come to light about the Reade allegations later? And if that happened, perhaps they wouldn’t want to be caught on the wrong side of history for having dismissed her initially.
This is still nothing more than a rather wild theory at this point. CNN’s total blackout on Reade coverage for almost a month may have been the result of something else entirely. But it certainly is intriguing to ponder.