Dropping this line in the middle of their story: “Contacted by CNN, one of Cohen’s attorneys, Lanny Davis, declined to comment.”
Then, last week, amid the deafening euphoria of the ‘anti-Trump’-ers, Davis told Anderson Cooper:
“I think the reporting of the story got mixed up in the course of a criminal investigation. We were not the source of the story.”
Davis increasingly backed away from the story in recent days, telling the Washington Post that he is not certain if the claim is accurate, and that he could not independently corroborate it.
As Buzzfeed notes, after Davis publicly backtracked from the claims, the New York Post and the Washington Post outed him as their confirming source and published apologies from Davis
But, of course, CNN was giving up such a great story so easily (whether it’s true or fake news), and followed up anxiously by
Now, after all that pre-amble, double-talk, and utterly bull**** fake news reporting, Lanny Davis – who we perhaps need to remind readers once again is an extremely well-paid f**king lawyer and communications expert – has told Buzzfeed that he was the anonymous source in a July CNN story.
Tonight, Davis told BuzzFeed News that he regrets both his role as an anonymous source and his subsequent denial of his own involvement.
All of which brings up to date, safe in the knowledge that despite Davis’ denial that CNN’s story ever occurred, CNN has “a source” that confirmed it and that’s good enough for them.
Davis told BuzzFeed News that he did, in fact, speak anonymously to CNN for its story, which cited “sources with knowledge” — meaning more than one person.
“I made a mistake,” Davis said.
Regarding his comments about a month later to Cooper, he added, “I did not mean to be cute.”
As Buzzfeed concludes, Davis’ role in the CNN story also offers a window into the kind of anonymous sourcing common across newsrooms. Some news outlets have a policy to not let sources speak “on background” — that is, as a “person familiar with the matter” or some other unnamed moniker — and also be allowed to decline to comment on the record.
“We should address Lanny Davis’s comments in our reporting and be more transparent with our readers about our reporting,” one CNN staffer told BuzzFeed News.
Buzzfeed’s Steven Perlberg tweeted later that “Lanny Davis called to add that he did not lie to Anderson Cooper, but says he “unintentionally misspoke” re his role in the CNN Trump Tower story”