Black Experience

CBS Apologizes for Mix-Up of John Lewis, Elijah Cummings Photos

CBS News on Monday apologized for confusing the photos of the late Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings and Georgia Rep. John Lewis.

The mix-up occurred during an evening broadcast, when the network showed a photo Cummings, who died in October at 68, referring to him as Lewis, who’s being treated for stage 4 pancreatic cancer.

Cummings’ image was placed next to a quote from the civil rights icon about his recently revealed illness.

“While I am clear-eyed about the prognosis… I have a fighting chance,” the quote from Lewis said.

The confusion sparked widespread outrage on social media:

“Can’t believe CBS News is showing a picture of the late U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings w/ Congressman John Lewis’ name as they talk about Rep. Lewis’ recent announcement. Get it right!” wrote @StephonFerguson.

“I know you all think Negroes like alike @CBSNews@NorahODonnell but this is Rep. Elijah Cummings…,” tweeted @coachjimeljones.

Added @Simoneap: “Please do better!! You should know this!!”

In response to the backlash, CBS Evening News issued the following statement:

“Tonight, on the 6:30 p.m. ET broadcast of the CBS Evening News, one photograph was misidentified as Congressman John Lewis. We have replaced the photo in all broadcasts and platforms. We deeply regret the error.”

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