Washington Post continues poor fact-checking record against Tom Cotton, forced to make second correction

The second correction came this week after the liberal paper’s resident fact-checker, Glenn Kessler, awarded Cotton two Pinocchios last March for predicting convicted terrorist Dzhokhar Tsarnaev would receive a coronavirus stimulus check. 

The Washington Post's Glenn Kessler and Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark.

The Washington Post’s Glenn Kessler and Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark. (Washington Post/FOX)

WASHINGTON POST ISSUES ‘CORRECTION’ ON 2020 TOM COTTON STORY CLAIMING COVID LAB-LEAK THEORY WAS ‘DEBUNKED’

“On March 6 at 10:12am, the Senate voted on an amendment to exclude prisoners—like the Boston Bomber—from getting stimulus checks. Every Democrat voted to send checks to prisoners, and every Republican voted to stop prisoners from getting checks,” Cotton tweeted following the Senate’s passage of the bill that included the checks last year. 

It was revealed this week that Tsarnaev had in fact received the stimulus payment when federal officials called for it, and any other funds in his inmate trust account, to be put toward the $ 101 million he owes the victims of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. 

Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev 

Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev  (Photo provided by FBI via Getty Images)

WAPO FACT-CHECKER BACKTRACKS AFTER COTTON CORRECTLY PREDICTED BOSTON BOMBER WOULD RECEIVE COVID STIMULUS CHECK

“It turns out Tom Cotton predicted correctly — Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the Boston bomber, did get a stimulus check. So we’ve adjusted the Pinocchio rating on this 2021 fact check,” Kessler tweeted, including a link to his corrected piece. 

SENATE DEMS CLEARED WAY FOR BOSTON BOMBER, OTHER CONVICTED MURDERERS TO RECEIVE STIMULUS CHECKS

In May, in a news story rather than a fact-check, The Post was forced to issue a separate correction more than a year after alleging Cotton was peddling a “debunked” “conspiracy theory” about the origins of the coronavirus pandemic. 

The paper joined much of the liberal media at the time in dismissing the possibility that the coronavirus started due to a leak at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in Wuhan, China, a theory that was promoted by Cotton, then-President Trump, then-Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and other top Republicans. 

As part of a broader media about-face, the Post apologized for declaring Cotton’s idea was “debunked.”

CASSIDY, COTTON SLAM DEMS FOR BLOCKING AMENDMENT THAT WOULD HAVE BANNED TSARNAEV FROM RECEIVING STIMULUS

“Earlier versions of this story and its headline inaccurately characterized comments by Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) regarding the origins of the coronavirus,” the correction to the February 2020 report read. “The term ‘debunked’ and The Post’s use of ‘conspiracy theory’ have been removed because, then as now, there was no determination about the origins of the virus.”

The correction came following a May 2021 report in The Wall Street Journal that, according to U.S. intelligence sources, three Wuhan researchers were hospitalized with COVID-like symptoms in November 2019 — shortly before the first virus case was reported.

Peter Daszak and Thea Fischer, members of the World Health Organization (WHO) team tasked with investigating the origins of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), sit in a car arriving at Wuhan Institute of Virology in Wuhan, Hubei province, China, Feb. 3, 2021. 

Peter Daszak and Thea Fischer, members of the World Health Organization (WHO) team tasked with investigating the origins of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), sit in a car arriving at Wuhan Institute of Virology in Wuhan, Hubei province, China, Feb. 3, 2021.  (REUTERS/Thomas Peter)

Cotton later blasted the media’s dismissal of the theory, alleging that it stemmed from liberal networks’ financial connections to the Chinese government. 

Fox News’ Joseph A. Wulfsohn, Howard Kurtz and David Rutz contributed to this report.

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