CBS4's credibility is taking on water, fast. Last week it conducted an embarrassing interview with President Obama, making itself look foolish. Now earlier this week, it piled on its national affiliate's tabloid-esque report on Congressional fundraising, making it look naive and uninformed.
The Obama interview fully made a fool of CBS4 and their anchor Karen Leigh. We had multiple members of the media write us to say that we were spot on to call it a fake interview.
We left town last week thinking CBS4 would be concerned about their credibility, only to return to find that they apparently don't care.
Their coverage of Cory Gardner's…gasp…fundraisng efforts is just plain foolish.
The national CBS affiliate produced a grainy footage report of Congressional freshman raising money in Florida that seemed like it fit better in a bad political made-for-TV movie.
Are advertising and ratings down so much at CBS that they can't afford better cameras? Or do they prefer cheap camera tricks in place of real reporting?
The report implied that Gardner and other freshman Congressmen were doing favors for lobbyists because they attended a fundraiser for $10,000.
Never mind the fact that freshman Congressmen have very little stroke in a body of 435 members, but in the days of seven figure Super PAC donations, $10k is not even a serious amount in politics anymore.
The most unfortunate part of the report is the total lack of countervailing evidence available to even the most junior intern researcher.
Gardner has been a pro-drilling, pro-energy person since he entered the state legislature. A simple review of his voting record would show he pushed increasing drilling and access to domestic energy long before a single dime of oil and gas donations hit his Congressional re-election account.
As Weld County, part of Gardner's district, reported a nearly 20% unemployment rate last August, and Weld County has an amazing array of energy resources, wouldn't it be possible, CBS, that Gardner supports drilling to help his constituents get back to work?
At least mentioning that possibility might have helped your report seem…you know…fair and accurate.
As for CBS4, here's a real story about buying access that you might want to spend your time investigating:
Pat Stryker raised $87,500 for President Obama's inauguration, donated $50k to the same fund, and has spent millions more developing a Democrat infrastructure in swing state Colorado. White House visitor logs show a "Pat Stryker" in October 2009, and then months later a $400 million loan is made by the Obama administration to Abound Solar, which Stryker's company has invested heavily in.
That seems to us like pay-to-play.
It also might take real investigative work, not fake interviews with the President or grainy footage tabloid reports about something that both parties do all the time.
Since actual Colorado jobs were lost over the Abound boondoggle, and the Colorado Democrats' personal sugar momma, and President Obama, sit right at the center of the action, it seems to us like real news.
But keep reporting dog bites man stories and see how long your credibility stays in tact.