Last night, MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell dropped a major bombshell – President Trump’s loans from Duestche Bank were cosigned by Russian oligarchs, further linking him to Russian dictator Vladimir Putin. What was O’Donnell’s proof? A single unnamed and unverified source who had personally told him and no one else of this groundbreaking revelation.
The scoop came to light during a conversation with Rachel Maddow on the MSNBC program ‘The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell.’ During the segment, O’Donnell said a “single source close to Deutsche Bank has told me that the Trump — Donald Trump’s loan documents there show that he has co-signers. That’s how he was able to obtain those loans. And that the co-signers are Russian oligarchs.” He added, “That would explain, it seems to me, every kind word Donald Trump has ever said about Russia and Vladimir Putin, if true, and I stress the ‘if true’ part of this.”
O’Donnell later re-emphasized his point on twitter with the same claim and same single anonymous source.
The news host appeared to be sticking by his claim until President Trump’s personal lawyer, Charles Harder, sent a brief letter to NBC’s legal team threatening action against what they “false and defamatory statements… about Mr. Trump.” He added that these statements are “extremely damaging” and assured the NBCU team that the only signer of Mr. Trumps loans were Trump himself.
Numerous documents for each of these loans are also recorded, publicly available and searchable online. Thus, actual malice can easily be proven based on your reckless disregard of the truth and unreasonable reliance on an alleged ‘source’ who you will not even identify in your story and likely is seeking to mislead you and the public for political reasons or other ulterior motives.Charles Harder
Though President Trump had threatened libel and slander suits multiple times during the campaign and his presidency, this is the first instance of him following through with his threat.
Well, O’Donnell all but admitted his story was fake, and told the public in a retraction tweet that he “made an error” when reporting the story, and it “didn’t go through our rigorous verification and standards process.”
He added that the story shouldn’t have been reported on during his show. In a time where trust in the media is at an all time low, O’Donnell’s reckless sharing of unverified game changing claims about the President’s ties to a Russian dictator only fuels the fire of mistrust.
The hashtag #RussianCosigners was trending on Twitter prior to the retraction, showing the willingness of the public to believe anything they hear without verification that may smear anyone with an R next to their names.
Categories: U.S. News