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NBC News boss can prove she’s more than a ‘figurehead’ by revealing truth behind retracted Paul Pelosi report

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NBC News’ incoming boss has a chance to provide transparency to lingering questions about why Miguel Almaguer’s infamous Paul Pelosi report was retracted by the previous regime last year without explanation, according to a longtime NBC News executive.

NBCUniversal announced earlier this month that controversial president Noah Oppenheim was out as the leader of NBC News. Former New York Times deputy managing editor Rebecca Blumenstein is set to join NBC News and will inherit much of Oppenheim’s responsibilities with the title of president of editorial, reporting directly to NBCUniversal News Group Chairman Cesar Conde. Blumenstein also spent time as the deputy editor of the Wall Street Journal. 

“Rebecca Blumenstein should hold NBC News to the higher standards of her previous employers and reveal what was ‘wrong’ with Miguel Almaguer’s reporting on Paul Pelosi,” a former senior NBC News executive told Fox News Digital. 

CONTROVERSIAL NOAH OPPENHEIM OUT AT NBC NEWS, PIVOTS TO NEW PRODUCTION ROLE AT NBCUNIVERSAL

Oppenheim’s tenure was plagued with self-inflicted controversy and often lacked transparency. Oppenheim received a blitz of negative attention surrounding his refusal to publish Ronan Farrow’s bombshell expose on Harvey Weinstein. He then insisted an outside law firm wasn’t needed to probe who knew about Matt Lauer’s behavior. NBC News never provided clarity on either public relations nightmare, much like it didn’t reveal who leaked the infamous “Access Hollywood” tape of Donald Trump from within NBC to the Washington Post.

The most recent example of NBC News shielding its audience from critical information came late last year when Almaguer’s shocking report about the moments leading up to the October attack on Paul Pelosi was retracted without explanation. 

Almaguer famously reported only four days before critical midterm elections that the husband of then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi might not have been in immediate danger when police arrived at his San Francisco home the night he was assaulted. The report contradicted the mainstream narrative. 

NBC BAY AREA AFFILIATE’S REPORT ON PAUL PELOSI ATTACK SHARES KEY DETAILS WITH RETRACTED ‘TODAY’ REPORT

NBC News retracted the shocking report by that afternoon as it began to go viral, scrubbing it from the internet in the process. NBC never explained what was wrong with the report, only offering a brief line about it not meeting standards. Then Almaguer was mysteriously vanished from the network for more than five weeks, but NBC News refused to admit on-the-record that he was suspended. Along the way, a local NBC affiliate in San Francisco reported many of the details that were retracted by the national outlet – but that report wasn’t withdrawn. 

The former senior NBC News executive, who was embarrassed by Oppenheim’s opaqueness, believes Blumenstein has a chance to prove she’s capable of restoring credibility at the Comcast-owned network. 

“Will she explain why Miguel’s suspension mysteriously ended? Rebecca needs to prove she’s more than just a figurehead with a bigger paycheck than the New York Times could afford,” they said. 

Blumenstein did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

NBC News did not immediately respond to a series of questions, including whether Blumenstein will be permitted to provide answers to lingering questions regarding the Pelosi report. 

Almaguer has not responded to multiple requests for comment and his agent declined to speak on the matter. 

NBC NEWS GETS PASS FROM LIBERAL MEDIA WATCHDOGS DESPITE ‘CLUMSY HANDLING’ OF RETRACTED PAUL PELOSI STORY

DePauw University journalism professor Jeffrey McCall agrees that NBC News has been “insufficient” in explaining the circumstances surrounding Almaguer’s reporting and the retraction. 

“It’s understandable that NBC might not comment on Almaguer’s personnel situation or his supposed suspension. But NBC does owe it to news consumers to explain what was perhaps incorrect about the original report that caused it to be taken down. Otherwise, viewers are left to wonder if perhaps the story was removed because it was too accurate, in a sense.,” McCall told Fox News Digital. 

“Or, viewers could wonder if outside pressure caused the story to be removed. Any time a major news organization changes or removes a report because of standards problems, those standards need to be explained. That can be done without openly bashing Almaguer’s, but by simply explaining what particular aspects of the story caused the entire story to be canned,” McCall continued. “This incident involving Paul Pelosi is still rather confusing and NBC has added to that mystery with its lack of transparency.”

A San Francisco Superior Court judge ruled on Wednesday that the police video of the attack on Paul Pelosi should be released to the public. A spokesperson for court, said staff is working to make a copy of the requested material available. 

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