Published: Thu, August 03, 2017
World Media | By Joan Schultz

Trump worked with Fox News to concoct DNC staffer story, lawsuit claims

Trump worked with Fox News to concoct DNC staffer story, lawsuit claims

The theory about Rich's role as the source of the leaked DNC emails became a popular right-wing conspiracy even before Fox published the story.

The suit, filed at the USA federal court house in Manhattan on Tuesday, is brought by Rod Wheeler, a Fox News contributor and retired police detective, against the television network, one of its journalists and another of its contributors.

"The retraction of this story is still being investigated internally and we have no evidence that Rod Wheeler was misquoted by Zimmerman".

In the suit, Wheeler charges that Butowsky ginned up the bogus story to "put to bed speculation" the Trump campaign colluded with Russian Federation. Butowsky and Wheeler met with then-White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer on April 20 to brief him on the Rich story.

Butowsky said that a voicemail cited by Wheeler in the lawsuit in which he mentions to Wheeler that their work has the White House's attention was actually about another D.C. detective who wanted whistleblower status in order to talk freely to Wheeler.

Fox President Jay Wallace, in a statement released within hours of the suit's filing, denied the Wheeler allegations. Wheeler says that Fox News and Trump supporter Ed Butowsky sought to shift public attention away from Russian Federation and fabricated quotes to help the narrative.

When asked about the story during a White House press briefing, Spicer told reporters he was not aware of it: "I don't - I'm not aware of - generally, I don't get updates on DNC - former DNC staffers".

A new suit is alleging that Fox News is fake news - and that the President signed off on a story with false quotes.

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According to NPR, Wheeler has worked as a paid commentator for Fox News.

The lawsuit was filed by an investigator who had been looking into the killing of Seth Rich, a former Democratic National Committee staff member killed in 2016 in what police say was a botched robbery. Why wouldn't you say Della-Camera or the D.C. guy, why did you say White House?

Fox New's story about Rich originally aired in May, but was retracted a week later.

Butowsky said that there's "absolutely no reason" for him to apologize to the Rich family because, "I haven't done anything to the Rich family". Reporter: Not long after, spicer denied any knowledge of the Seth rich story on fox. Wheeler, who had made an appearance on Fox affiilate WTTG about the situation, subsequently told CNN he had no evidence to support the claims. In may, fox reported they had proof the conspiracy theory about Seth rich giving to e-mails to wikileaks was real.

In response to the explosive claim, Spicer told NPR that he is unaware of any such contact with the president. "And President Trump nor the White house has anything to do with any of this".

The story, originally published on May 16, 2017, cited information from an unnamed Federal Bureau of Investigation official and also attributed two quotes to Wheeler, both of which he now denies ever saying.

Butowsky told CNN's Chris Cuomo that when he met with Spicer about his findings, he did not tell the press secretary the goal of the meeting beforehand. "He wants the article out immediately".

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