ABC Ignores Own Scoop on White House Distorting VA Scandal

ABC has failed to cover exclusive reporting from its own Jonathan Karl, ABC News’ Chief White House Correspondent, when he caught White House Press Secretary Jay Carney distorting the American Legion’s position on the VA controversy. 

For the second night in a row, ABC’s World News with Diane Sawyer ignored the latest in the scandal engulfing the Veterans Administration. On Monday, May 19, the Washington Times released documents that showed the Obama administration was warned about the problems surrounding the VA as early as 2009, yet ABC has yet to cover these revelations.

In a report filed exclusively on the ABC News website on Monday, Karl revealed:

At the White House briefing today, Press Secretary Jay Carney repeatedly suggested the American Legion had praised the Department of Veterans Affairs for the resignation Friday of top VA health official Dr. Robert Petzel. It turns out, however, the American Legion had issued a statement dismissing the resignation as “business as usual.”

The ABC reporter continued: 

The American Legion put out a statement on Friday about Dr. Petzel’s resignation saying almost exactly the opposite of what Carney suggested. “This move by VA is not a corrective action, but a continuation of business as usual,” American Legion National Commander Daniel M. Dellinger said in a statement. “Dr. Petzel was already scheduled to retire this year, so his resignation now really won’t make that much of a difference.”

The statement — which can be found on the at the top of the American Legion’s website — goes on to say the real problem is at the top of VA. “Secretary [Eric] Shinseki and Under Secretary [Allison] Hickey remain on the job. They are both part of VA’s leadership problem, and we want them to resign as soon as possible.”

Instead of covering the White House’s distortion of the American Legion, the Tuesday, World News found time to talk about the dangers of germs on airplanes, how Sandra Bullock dances to music every morning, a full story promoting its Dancing With The Stars program, and played a video of a bear rescuing its cub from a highway three times. On Tuesday morning, Good Morning America spent 12 minutes discussing strippers, models and TV shows but skipped the VA scandal entirely.  

— Jeffrey Meyer is a News Analyst at the Media Research Center. Follow Jeffrey Meyer on Twitter.