A lawsuit filed yesterday (August 1st) claims that Fox News Channel coordinated with the White House on a false story suggesting that last year's murder of former Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich, which police believe to have been the result of a botched robbery, was connected to the theft of the DNC's emails during the presidential campaign.
The lawsuit was filed by an investigator named Rod Wheeler who'd been looking into the 27-year-old Rich's Washington, D.C., murder, and who claims the false story was concoted to distract from the Russia investigation by suggesting it was Rich, not Russia, who stole the emails.
#1 Trump wanted the Seth Rich story out there because he thought it would deflect from Russia.
#2 President Trump reviewed the Fox News story on Seth Rich before it was published.
#3 The Fox News reporter, Malia Zimmerman, fabricated two quotes in the article, and attributed them to Wheeler.
#4 Wheeler presented his concerns to Fox News.
#5 Completely unrelated to the Seth Rich-Russia narrative/agenda outlined in the lawsuit are allegations that Wheeler has been discriminated against by Fox News on the basis of his race.
Jay Wallace, President of News at Fox News, said the allegations were false:
“The accusation that FoxNews.com published Malia Zimmerman’s story to help detract from coverage of the Russia collusion issue is completely erroneous. The retraction of this story is still being investigated internally and we have no evidence that Rod Wheeler was misquoted by Zimmerman. Additionally, FOX News vehemently denies the race discrimination claims in the lawsuit — the dispute between Zimmerman and Rod Wheeler has nothing to do with race."Fox retracted the story a week after it was published.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said yesterday that Trump had no knowledge of the story before it was published and said it was "completely untrue" that the White House had any role in it. Fox called it "completely erroneous" to suggest it pushed the story to distract from the Russia investigation, and said it had "no evidence" that Wheeler was misquoted.