CNN on Tuesday cited an unverifiable intelligence report in a story claiming that Trump, along with President Barack Obama and a handful of ranking members of Congress, are aware that the Russian government possesses damaging information on the president-elect that could affect how he leads.
From the report:
Classified documents presented last week to President Obama and President-elect Trump included allegations that Russian operatives claim to have compromising personal and financial information about Mr. Trump, multiple US officials with direct knowledge of the briefings tell CNN.
The allegations were presented in a two-page synopsis that was appended to a report on Russian interference in the 2016 election. The allegations came, in part, from memos compiled by a former British intelligence operative, whose past work US intelligence officials consider credible. The FBI is investigating the credibility and accuracy of these allegations, which are based primarily on information from Russian sources, but has not confirmed many essential details in the memos about Mr. Trump.
The classified briefings last week were presented by four of the senior-most US intelligence chiefs — Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, FBI Director James Comey, CIA Director John Brennan, and NSA Director Admiral Mike Rogers.
Almost immediately after, cat list purveyor and longtime Trump foe BuzzFeed was reporting that the Russians have proof that Trump had prostitutes “perform a ‘golden showers’ (urination) show in front of him” during a trip to Russia.
Trump, of course, has denied the allegations.
And the documents, remember, are unsourced.
BuzzFeed’s decision drew so much criticism from Americans who note that responsible journalism is not about publishing documents whose source cannot be verified that CNN was forced to release a statement distancing itself from the story about the supposed information.
But not before Trump had the opportunity to lay a serious truth on one of its reporters during a press conference.
During a presser today, Trump called intelligence officials “disgraceful” for allowing information that is “false and fake” to be released to journalists.
He then lambasted BuzzFeed and CNN for running with the story without properly verifying details of the report.
CNN’s Jim Acosta then exploded that Trump was “attacking” his news organization.
He shouted, “Since you are attacking us, can you give us a question?”
Trump replied that he would not, adding, “Your organization is terrible.”
But Acosta persisted, yelling over another reporter’s attempt to ask Trump a policy question.
“I’m not going to give you a question,” Trump responded. “I’m not going to give you a question. You are fake news!”