That controversial video of Mitt Romney speaking at a closed fundraiser and talking about the 47% of Americans who have no income tax burden wasn’t the full video as its proponents have suggested. Bloggers have discovered that it is missing a couple of minutes in the middle:
The Legal Insurrection blog’s William Jacobson and The Blaze both raised questions on Tuesday about whether Mother Jones had, as promised, revealed the full video, given an apparent jump cut in the critical section of Romney’s remarks.
“Something is missing. Romney’s 47% answer was cut off before completed, and is not picked up on the Part 2 audio video,” Jacobson noted.
David Corn of Mother Jones has now admitted, despite his claims elsewhere that they were releasing the full footage, that his source turned off the recording device for a couple of minutes in the middle of Romney’s key remarks. He’s also had to update his original post to admit that two minutes of a key part of the footage is missing.
To the list of journalism’s greatest disgraces, let us now add James O’Keefe. O’Keefe calls himself an investigative reporter, though as far as we can tell the only group of journalists he has anything in common with are habitual fabricators like Jayson Blair, Stephen Glass, and Janet Cooke.
But that’s not the scandal we’re talking about. The real scandal is that—even though by the time he posted a “sting” of a top NPR fundraiser, O’Keefe was notorious for creating deceptive video smear jobs (ACORN? Hello?)—the media repeated the allegations uncritically.
O’Keefe, of course, was guilty of no such fabrications. But Mother Jones and David Corn are certainly guilty of releasing incomplete video while simultaneously claiming that it was complete.
I don’t know that the full context of Romney’s remarks would help or hurt him – I think his original comments are controversial only because they were so honest – but the point is that the missing footage should have been disclosed.