It’s not the mother of all mea culpas; that prize goes to the Kentucky paper that neglected to cover the 1960s civil rights movement. But New Brunswick’s Telegraph-Journal has issued a dandy today. Not only has the Saint John, N.B.-based daily apologized to Prime Minister Stephen Harper, it has admitted it let down its own reporters by inserting unfounded claims into their story about the PM’s alleged failure to eat the communion wafer during the funeral of former Governor-General Roméo LeBlanc. The story had stated as fact that Harper had pocketed the wafer and that a senior Catholic cleric had called him on it. Not only was there “no credible support for these statements of fact,” the paper admits on its front page, but the TJ’s own reporters never wrote it. “In the editing process, these statements were added without the knowledge of the reporters and without any credible support for them,” the apology reads. Wow. That’s some aggressive editing.
The original piece: