Shocker: the media lied to the American public once again.
We learned recently that the Washington Post, after claiming to have verified a story from anonymous sources, did no such thing for one particular “bombshell” story.
The Post initially reported in January that Trump told an official working in Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s office to “find the fraud” in the state, telling them that they would be a national hero if she did. The call took place on December 23rd, and was just released, proving that Trump never said that. In reality, Trump said that this unnamed official would be praised when the “right answer comes out” and encouraged them to examine mail-in ballots in Fulton county.
The recording was discovered in this unnamed official’s computer trash bin after they said they didn’t think a recording existed. Without their gross incompetence in what appears to be them trying to cover her tracks, this bogus reporting would’ve never been exposed.
Afterwards, the Washington Post published an epic correction to the story. “Correction: Two months after publication of this story, the Georgia secretary of state released an audio recording of President Donald Trump’s December phone call with the state’s top elections investigator. The recording revealed that The Post misquoted Trump’s comments on the call, based on information provided by a source,” the correction began. “Trump did not tell the investigator to ‘find the fraud’ or say she would be ‘a national hero’ if she did so. Instead, Trump urged the investigator to scrutinize ballots in Fulton County, Ga., asserting she would find ‘dishonesty’ there. He also told her that she had ‘the most important job in the country right now.'”
The entirety of the media spread the bogus story when it was initially responded – and it’s a guarantee that few will acknowledge the correction. And even if every network were to correct the story, the number of viewers who see the correction is usually much smaller than those who were initially misled.
Trump reacted to the news by calling it a media travesty. “You will notice that establishment media errors, omissions, mistakes, and outright lies always slant one way—against me and against Republicans,” Trump said. “Meanwhile, stories that hurt Democrats or undermine their narratives are buried, ignored, or delayed until they can do the least harm—for example, after an election is over. Look no further than the negative coverage of the vaccine that preceded the election and the overdue celebration of the vaccine once the election had concluded. A strong democracy requires a fair and honest press. This latest media travesty underscores that legacy media outlets should be regarded as political entities—not journalistic enterprises.”
Writing in the Washington Examiner, Becket Adams makes the great point that this is more than just an indictment of the Washington Post, it is indeed an indictment of the media. That’s not because they ran with a bogus story they failed to verify – but rather because they ran with a bogus story that they claimed to have verified.
- NBC News reported it “confirmed The Post’s characterization of the Dec. 23 call through a source familiar with the conversation.”
- USA Today claimed a “Georgia official speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss internal matters confirmed the details of the call.”
- ABC News reported: “President Donald Trump phoned a chief investigator in Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s office asking the official to ‘find the fraud’ and telling this person they would be a ‘national hero’ for it, an individual familiar with the matter confirmed to ABC News.”
- PBS NewsHour and CNN likewise appeared to claim they independently “confirmed” the story through their own anonymous sources.
Or in other words, anything who assumed that the media’s “anonymous sources” may be “non-existent sources” or “politically motivated sources” is vindicated in this case.
This comes after the New York Times reported that Capitol police officer Brian Sicknick was murdered by Trump supporters on January 6th by having his skull based with a fire extinguisher. That story was disseminated in the media for over five weeks before a quiet correction was issued.
Matt Palumbo is the author of Dumb and Dumber: How Cuomo and de Blasio Ruined New York, Debunk This: Shattering Liberal Lies, and Spygate
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