What’s the Point of Corey Lewandowski?

Who benefits from Lewandowski's commentary on CNN? Lewandowski.

There are two stories competing for attention that relate to the latest Corey Lewandowski conflict-of-interest news.

1. That Lewandowski, a CNN contributor paid for singing the praises of Trump on air, will continue to also receive payments from the Donald Trump campaign through all of 2016, a stipulation, apparently, of his severance agreement.

2. That Mediaite incorrectly reported that Lewandowski had been suspended after it came to light that Lewandowski was still being paid by the Trump campaign.

The alternate reality in that initial Mediaite story reads like a projection of what CNN could have, and in our opinion should have, done.

But just last night, CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker continued to defend Lewandowski’s hire, because balance.

Is there no one else, we wonder, who is capable of giving CNN the type of balance it gets from a former Trump campaign manager still getting paid by that campaign, all under the terms of a non-disparagement clause which probably limits (but who knows?) what Lewandowski can say about the campaign?

For now, we get on-air birther nonsense and Trump gets off-air advice from Lewandowski.

It’s all in the name of balance, which, in the case of CNN’s relationship with Lewandowski, is a greater journalistic ideal than avoiding a conflict of interest.

Publish date: September 21, 2016 https://dev.adweek.com/digital/whats-the-point-of-corey-lewandowski/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT