For all of the fake news stories that bedeviled former President Donald Trump for more than five years, as he campaigned and and then served a term in the White House, the Washington Post generated some of the worst.
And like a bad habit you can’t break, the hits just keep on coming from Jeff Bezos’ newspaper.
The Daily Caller notes:
The Washington Post issued a lengthy correction after published audio revealed it misquoted former President Donald Trump regarding his phone call with Frances Watson, the chief investigator of the Georgia secretary of state’s office.
The report, first published in December, accused Trump of telling Watson to “find the fraud” and lauding her as “a national hero” if she was able to find any. While the audio did show Trump claiming he won the 2020 election and suggesting Watson would be “praised” after the “right answer” was revealed, The Post’s original quotes turned out to be fake news [Emphasis added].
“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 Post’s article now reads at the top of the story. “The recording revealed that The Post misquoted Trump’s comments on the call, based on information provided by a source. 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,” the correction continued. “He also told her that she had ‘the most important job in the country right now.’”
The paper went on to note that its headline and original story were “corrected to remove quotes misattributed to Trump.” Also, WaPo published a subsequent story about the recording.
The fallout from this phony-baloney story is immeasurable.
First and foremost, the story most likely cost Republicans control of the Senate, since both GOP incumbents lost their Jan. 4 run-offs to Democrats. The Post gave the direct implication that Trump was a despotic, desperate madman who would do anything to cling to power, including enticing state officials to do something nefarious. Democrat control of the Senate gave Democrats control over all law-making apparatuses after ‘winning’ the White House and keeping the House, albeit by a narrower margin.
The fake quotes also, no doubt, contributed to the historic second impeachment of Trump and may even have helped sway Republican lawmakers to cast votes to impeach, and then convict, him.
To believe that the Post simply ‘misquoted’ or ‘misattributed quotes’ is laughable, given that the paper was reportedly leaked a recording of Trump’s call. So two things had to have happened here: Either the Post didn’t get the full recording (and didn’t bother to get it); or the Post had the full recording all along and made the conscious decision to misattribute and misquote.
Either way, the paper should be held liable, legally, for this criminal negligence, at a minimum.