|About Paula Reid|
|Alumni||William & Mary, Villanova University School of Law, University of Pennsylvania|
CBS reporter Paula Reid is well-known as one of today’s increasingly outspoken journalists. In an atmosphere where many reporters don’t know whether they should respond in real time to any wrong facts from President Trump, Reid is earning praise for fact-checking the POTUS to his face. Reid couldn’t resist correcting Trump regarding his statements on border policy. But this isn’t Paula Reid’s only fearless moment.
She Confronted Trump on Border Policy
The current political atmosphere has led several news outlets to maintain databases and archives to routinely fact-check whatever President Donald Trump says. But every time Trump makes a false or misleading claim, journalists face the professional dilemma of responding to him on live TV rather than presenting facts to their viewers/readers later.
Paula Reid has no such inhibitions. The CBS reporter has always asked the hard-hitting questions. Most recently, Reid earned the Internet’s applause for calling out Trump on his questionable claim on border policy.
— Paula Reid (@PaulaReidCBS) November 27, 2018
On November 26, Trump spoke to reporters on his short walk between the Oval Office and Marine One. Reid asked for the president’s reaction to the latest CBS 60 Minutes report, which found evidence that the Trump administration began the “zero tolerance” separation policy nine months before they claimed it began.
Trump had already tweeted about the show, saying that Obama and Bush had also separated migrant children from their families. However, the former administrations didn’t separate children from adults who crossed the border illegally unless there were suspicions of human trafficking or child endangerment, or under other limited conditions.
Trump responded to Reid by saying the Obama administration also separated children from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border. “But people don’t like to talk about that,” he added.
While Trump’s predecessor did deport several migrants, he didn’t follow a policy of widely prosecuting adults who entered the country illegally. The previous administration found prosecuting the migrants too extreme.
Trump’s claim had already been discredited by several media outlets back in June. But he doubled down on his claim in response to Reid.
She, however, corrected him on the spot, saying, “Sir, it was different. You decided to prosecute everyone at the border.”
The President ignored her statement and walked away. But Reid was applauded for correcting his claim immediately.
Trump has usually ignored corrections to his claims, as he did with Reid. But since she set the ball rolling, Internet users are hoping more reporters will correct his facts on the spot till he responds.
— Paula Reid (@PaulaReidCBS) November 19, 2018
She Left a Law Career for Broadcast
Reid had a dual major in psychology and English at the College of William & Mary in Virginia. After completing her BS in 2005, she acquired her JD in law from the Villanova University School of Law. In 2016, she earned a masters in bioethics (MBE) from the University of Pennsylvania.
She originally began her career in law in 2006, as a volunteer in Juvenile Justice Project of Louisiana. She also interned at the Chester County DA’s office. She later passed the bar exams for New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
After a year-long judicial clerkship in Delaware State Court, she shifted gears to broadcast in 2010. Since joining CBS in 2010, she’s put her background to use by covering the Department of Justice.
She went on to expand her resume with investigative reporting and production research. In April 2018, Reid was promoted to Washington correspondent.
Paula’s career mirrors that of fellow CBS correspondent, Chip Reid. The Columbia Law School graduate was a Senate Judiciary Committee Counsel before switching to journalism in 1988. Though they have the same last name, Chip and Paula aren’t related.
She’s fiercely private about her personal life. It’s only known that she resides in Washington, D.C. with her husband while covering the Department of Justice, the White House, and legal beat.
She Questioned If Trump Could Fire Mueller
While working with CBS, Reid has covered Hillary Clinton’s email scandal, the prosecution of El Chapo, and the civil unrest in Ferguson, Baltimore, and Charlottesville. She has also covered the Trump administration’s travel ban.
However, the justice beat remains her major focus. She has been on top of every development in Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.
It was while covering the Mueller probe that Reid struck a nerve with the Trump administration back in April. During a press briefing by White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders when Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen’s home was raided by the FBI, Sanders said that the president believes he has the authority to fire Mueller if he chooses to.
Reid followed it up right away, noting, “You said the president believes he has the power to fire Robert Mueller. Because usually, most legal experts believe that he would have to order Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to fire Mueller, and Rosenstein could, of course, refuse.”
Sanders responded, “I know a number of individuals in the legal community, and including at the Department of Justice, said he has the power to do so, but I don’t have any further announcements.”
By then, it was already known that Trump couldn’t fire Mueller directly. But Reid’s question sparked a debate on whether the president could really fire Mueller.