Mayor Cook Still Won't Talk to Channel 9


POSTED: Wednesday, June 8, 2011 - 5:13pm

UPDATED: Friday, June 10, 2011 - 3:04pm

EL PASO- Mayor John Cook isn't happy with NewsChannel 9 and isnt speaking to us.  On Monday, he refused an interview about something as harmless as the renovation of San Jacinto Plaza. 

We wondered why.  Then his staff told us the mayor doesn't want to speak to NewsChannel 9  because we misinterpret his words. 

Sources in City Hall have told us the mayor won't talk to us because of a couple of stories we've done.  In each one, we've interviewed the mayor, and used his answers verbatim in our stories, not changing a single thing.  Today, we tried to figure out why he thinks we're twisting his words...

We tried to pay a visit to the mayor at his office today, with no luck.

"I was wondering if, my name is Matt, I'm with Channel 9.  I was wondering if the mayor had any time to speak with us today?" reporter Matt Rivers asked one of the mayor's secretaries. 

His staff tells us he went to D.C., to attend a National League of Cities meeting. 

It's a shame, because we wanted to ask him why he won't talk to us.  We assume it's about a couple of stories we've done, featuring the mayor. 

Ffirst up was the deep freeze.  You'll remember those couple of days in early February when the city shut down, and the mayor was nowhere to be found. 

He was vacationing in Austin, and said he didn't want to cancel his trip.  We caught up with him on his cell phone just before he got back to town.  We don't think he liked it when we played this soundbite.

"Did they want me to restore their water?  I'm not a plumber," the mayor had said.

He was responding to El Pasoans who were upset that he was out of town and we put his answer on air.

The next story the mayor might not like was a bit more disgusting.  Feces and urine coat an alleyway, thanks to migrant workers who live there. 

Tthe mayor told us he's known about the problem for a long time, but doesn't know what to do about it.  It's worth noting the alley still hasn't been cleaned. 

And perhaps last on the list, Ann Morgan Lily.  We've done several stories on her leading up to this weekend's runoff election, exposing campaign misdeeds and her flip-flopping on a key city issue. 

The mayor has defended her in City Council, so maybe he's unhappy with our election coverage.

We can't really be sure why the mayor won't talk to us, until he talks to us.  Wwe've provided him with every opportunity to respond, and we're waiting to hear what he has to say.

So this marks day two of the mayor missing in action, although we're told he will be returning on Sunday.

That means we'll try and interview him first thing Monday morning.  That's if If we can't get him on the phone before then. 

Comments News Comments

This is ridiculous. While you may repeat his words verbatim (with many typos as noted above), you seem to be very selective in which words you repeat and which details you leave out. You guys have an agenda. I wouldn't give you an interview either. I don't blame the man at all. He is doing the right thing and you guys earned being shunned.

Mayor Cook is a piece of garbage. The only thing that he cares about is HIMSELF. No, he won't talk to you, because you expose him for what he is, a big, fat ZERO. Keep up the good work, keep up the pressure, maybe he will resign and then this city can move foward.

Dear Ktsm,
After reading about this man "we call Mayor"I don't know why you are concern about him not wanting to talk to you."WHO CARES!"
He wasn't a good repersenative and he is not a good mayor.

When we had the freeze,I would ask where is the Mayor?Why has he not appreared to assure the El Pasoans,that he is doing his job.Ms.Escorbar was the only one who had the guts to stand up and say "I AM HERE FOR YOU EL PASO."

John Cook doesn't impress me anyway. This story just adds to my personal feelings anyway.

You folks at KTSM News are bunch of hoo "the Mayor won't talk to us".

Did u ever think that maybe if u had a REAL concern or story to report on that he would talk to u guys? This is not the first time u guys twist an elected official's words & take them out of context.

I don't personally know the mayor or any of the city reps but I do know that if u two-bit reporters want respect you gotta give respect.

Get out there & report on some real stories! Bunch of cry babies!!

if they can't stand critisism they shouldn't run for office.

Is this news or gossip? As someone who likes to keep informed about my local news and world news I don't find this very informative. I really don't care if he wants to talk to this news source or that news source! It just sounds like you guys are whining about it and wanted to let everyone know that he won't talk to you.

You wonder why the mayor doesn't want to talk to you? You can't even run a spell check; why should we assume you can properly execute a more complex fact check?

1: with NewsChannel 9 and ISNT
2. I was wondering if, my name is Matt... [do you know your own name?]
3. Ffirst up
4. Tthe mayor told
5. Wwe've provided him
6. That's if If we

Maybe the mayor doesn't want to talk to KTSM. With "reporting" as sloppy and pouty as this... I don't particularly blame him.

Thank you, that is exactly what I wanted to express!

Sure sounds like a little spoiled kid taking his ball home with him and refusing to playwith the kids. He should be above this, true or skewed reporting, he should be man enough and man-up to the problems. After all he does work for us, doesnt he? Or maby Manager Wilson has instructed him otherwise. What a shame, and we wonder why they laugh at us in Austin. When will El Paso and our leaders grow up and show some true leadership?

I don't blame him. They new way your station is heading will only see more public figures and news makers refusing to talk to you. Your spin is unlike anything I have seen before, and I have been watching for 30 years.

I wouldn't speak with you people either. You DON'T post what he says verbatim. When the deep freeze happened he was already IN Austin and you made it seem as if he left in the middle of the storm. You used his interview on his way home to YOUR ADVANTAGE. If you wanted to be fair you would have posted and aired the ENTIRE interview. You constantly blame problems that are out of the mayor's hands on him. I'm glad he won't talk to you, your news stories are a joke.

I guess he needs to find new employment somewhere else if he won't talk to the press. Not all citizens can and do attend city council meetings and hearings. We watch the news to see what and how he is handling situations in this city which by the way elected him to office. If he can't take the heat of his office then Mayor Cook needs to leave and let another take the leadership role of El Paso government.

This isn't news. You're working on your own agenda, go find something real to report about.

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