Michael Bloomberg’s 2015 comments defending stop-and-frisk sure sounded bad, but at least he’s got friends in high places to help mitigate the damage. One of these friends is CNN business and politics correspondent Cristina Alesci, who, coincidentally, used to work at Bloomberg Television.

According to Alesci, as damning as the audio is, there really isn’t any evidence that we should take it seriously:

So what if Benjamin Dixon is a Bernie supporter? Dixon didn’t manufacture the audio. Michael Bloomberg built that. Michael Bloomberg made that happen.

Pathetic “journalism.”

In fairness, CNN’s Kate Bolduan isn’t so quick to dismiss the significance of Bloomberg’s comments. But Alesci’s desperate, knee-jerk defense of Bloomberg and attempt to smear the guy who dug up the audio is still a very, very bad look for CNN. A familiar look, but a bad one nonetheless.

Just to be on the safe side, don’t hold your breath.