More than a month after Leslie Moonves

    February 16, 2005

More than a month after CBS chairman Leslie Moonves, requested three journalists from the network to resign, they have not yet done so.

The journalists were involved with a report on President Bush’s National Guard service that contained flaws.

According to the New York Times,

“The journalists – Betsy West, a senior vice president for CBS News; Josh Howard, executive producer of the Wednesday edition of “60 Minutes”; and Mary Murphy, Mr. Howard’s deputy – were asked by Mr. Moonves to resign on Jan. 10, the day he released the findings of an independent panel engaged by CBS to investigate the flawed report. The panel found that CBS News had rushed the report on to the air on Sept. 8 in a frantic bid to beat its competitors and had not worked aggressively enough to verify the documents on which the report was based.

Although the three journalists were relieved of their duties on the day the panel reported its findings, none had agreed to Mr. Moonves’s request as of yesterday, according to two network officials who have been informally briefed on the situation.”

Howard wants his name cleared before he resigns, and claims that he will demand that CBS takes back remarks made by Moonves.

Lawyers have been hired by each of the journalists. According to a CBS official, Howard and Murphy, have both been offered cash settlements equaling less than one year’s salary. The settlements have been refused.

In response to the New York Times article, I.Chi.Wawa had this to say at Wizbang,

“You can’t blame CBS for rushing to get the forged docs in there; they had an electorate to seduce. For a real laugh, look at how the NYT covers the same story this morning. No mention of discepancies or timelines, just allusions to employees seeking ‘leverage’. The Times is so over.”

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