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White House Pushed Fox News to Publish Seth Rich Story, Lawsuit Claims

White House Pushed Fox News to Publish Seth Rich Story, Lawsuit Claims”

And Tuesday a lawsuit was filed that claims President Trump worked with Fox News to concoct a story that a Democratic National Committee staffer was killed in retaliation for giving damaging emails about Clinton to WikiLeaks.

Wheeler's lawsuit begins with a screencap of a text message he received from Ed Butowsky, a Fox News contributor who has also written articles for Breitbart.

After the story was published May 16, Wheeler says he asked Zimmerman to remove the statements attributed to him and she told him she "had been instructed by her bosses at Fox News to leave the false quotes in the story", he alleges in the suit.

For months, right-wing conspiracy theorists had floated unproven theories that Rich was the person who provided Wikileaks with the DNC emails, and suggested his death was retribution for his supposed leak. Wheeler claims that Fox News made up his quotes in the story supporting its premise and that Trump wanted the story put out to divert attention from the Russian Federation investigation.

According to the legal filing, the fabricated quotes by Wheeler include: "My investigation up to this point shows there was some degree of email exchange between Seth Rich and Wikileaks". Butowsky also denies that he shared drafts of the Fox News story with Trump or the president's aides, claiming that he sought to help Wheeler land a job in the administration.

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"Not to add any more pressure but the president just read the article". Together, they investigated the death of Seth Rich, a DNC staffer who was murdered July 10, 2016. He wants the article out immediately.

The Democratic National Committee, which has rejected many right-wing conspiracy theories about Rich's death, said if the allegations were true, "it is beyond vile" that the White House "would use the murder of a young man to distract the public's attention from their chaotic administration and Trump's ties to Russian Federation". "But for me to comment from here about an ongoing investigation - I believe it's still ongoing; I don't even know the status of it in terms of D.C. - but it would be highly inappropriate to do that". His lawsuit, filed Tuesday in NY, lays out an explosive tale of Trump allies conspiring to push a false story to take the pressure of the Russian collusion investigation off the president, and a news organization willing to show the president its story before it was published.

Wallace also told NPR that there is no "concrete evidence" that Wheeler was misquoted by Zimmerman.

The lawsuit claims that Butowsky is "an outspoken supporter of Donald Trump and opponent of Hillary Clinton, and a friend to former Press Secretary Sean Spicer and Chief Strategist Steve Bannon". Spicer now tells NPR's David Folkenflik, rather bizarrely, that the meeting "had nothing to do with advancing the president's domestic agenda-and there was no agenda", but instead "they were just informing me of the [Fox] story".

So, no, you can't believe everything his suit says.

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In a statement, Kelly said he was honoured to be asked to serve as the Chief of Staff to the President of the United States. General Kelly has been a star, done an incredible job thus far, respected by everybody.

Fox called the accusation that reporter Malia Zimmerman's story was published to detract from the Russian investigation "completely erroneous". "The retraction of this story is being investigated internally and we have no evidence that Wheeler was misquoted by Zimmerman".

Spicer is asked about the story during the White House press briefing.

In a statement, Wheeler's lawyer, Douglas Wigdor, said, "Fox News was working with the Trump administration to disseminate fake news in order to distract the public from Russia's alleged attempts to influence our Country's presidential election".

Wheeler, a former Metropolitan Police Department officer, was a key figure in a series of debunked stories claiming that Rich had been in contact with Wikileaks before his death. Fox News later retracted the article, saying it didn't meet its "standards".

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