‘This is one of the reasons that a majority of Americans have lost trust in the media…’
This was a reckless attempt to slander our family and smear a great company. Apologies are not enough when the true intent was solely to damage and cause harm. As a company, we will be taking legal action. This unethical behavior has to stop. @Lawrence @MSNBC https://t.co/i4X6CcdkCm
— Eric Trump (@EricTrump) August 29, 2019
O’Donnell admitted he didn’t adhere to journalistic ethics, “rigorous verification,” or MSNBC’s “standards” before he wrote a report claiming President Trump received business funding from Russian oligarchs. The report was based off of one anonymous source’s “evidence.”
“This single source close to Deutsche Bank has told me that 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,” O’Donnell told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow. “If true, that would explain every kind word Donald Trump has ever said about Russia and Vladimir Putin.”
President Trump’s team immediately condemned the report as baseless and demanded an apology from O’Donnell, who later admitted he had never seen the documents his source claimed to have.
“This is one of the reasons that a majority of Americans have lost trust in the media,” Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement.
Trump’s attorney, Charles Harder, said in a letter to NBC executives that Trump’s loans are “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,” he wrote, according to the Washington Times.