CBS News is facing heavy backlash for reportedly firing the ex-ABC News staffer who leaked the footage exposing how the network killed the Jeffrey Epstein story.
Journalist Yashar Ali cited "two sources with knowledge of the situation" who claimed ABC News executives "believe they know the identity" of a former employee with access to the viral footage of ABC News anchor Amy Robach claiming her network "quashed" her reporting on Epstein, and that they suspected the leaker was working at CBS News.
According to Ali, the executives at both networks were in communication with each other throughout the process and the CBS staffer has since been fired. The New York Post also reported that CBS fired the employee.
"A TV source said the woman was let go on Wednesday, after ABC execs alerted CBS," Page Six reporter Sara Nathan wrote.
The reported collaboration between the two networks and firing of the CBS staffer were widely criticized on social media.
"CBS fired a staffer for... a story that was embarrassing to ABC?" Republican pollster Logan Dobson asked.
"Thank god the monster who leaked video about ABC spiking new on a politically connected billionaire pedophile will no longer be disgracing the journalism profession again," another Twitter user reacted.
Many critics, however, compared the apparent leaker to the whistleblower who triggered the impeachment inquiry into President Trump.
"Nice to see media competitors coming together to destroy the whistleblower," Grabien founder Tom Elliott wrote.
CBS News declined comment.
Project Veritas published the footage that included Robach saying ABC refused to air an interview she conducted with one of Epstein’s victims.
Despite widespread criticism, ABC News downplayed the significance of the video, telling Fox News that Robach’s Epstein story wasn’t fit to air.
"At the time, not all of our reporting met our standards to air, but we have never stopped investigating the story. Ever since, we’ve had a team on this investigation and substantial resources dedicated to it," an ABC News spokesperson told Fox News. "That work has led to a two-hour documentary and six-part podcast that will air in the new year."
Fox News' Brian Flood contributed to this report.