Many of our readers certainly remember the unfortunate story of Seth Rich, a young man murdered in a botched robbery attempt, whose name got wrapped up into a far-right conspiracy theory. That conspiracy theory was pushed extremely hard by Fox News over the course of several days and and even weeks. Eventually the story was debunked and Fox News retracted it from their website, although Sean Hannity continued to back it and discuss it on his show.
Now, a Fox commentator named Rod Wheeler has filed a lawsuit against Fox News alleging that the network, a Fox News reporter named Malia Zimmerman, and a wealthy Trump supporter named Ed Butowsky created quotations out of thin air and attributed them to him.
There is even evidence that allegedly shows Butowsky informing Wheeler that President Trump had reviewed the drafts of the story before allowing Fox News to air it. Butowsky now retracts his story that the White House played a role in the creation of this conspiracy theory, although his text messages and voicemail say otherwise.
Below is an image of the text message sent from Ed Butowsky to Rod Wheeler prior to the Seth Rich story being aired:
Additionally, the lawsuit claims:
“Mr. Wheeler – who was the only named source quoted in the article – did not make these statements. According to Butowsky, the statements were falsely attributed to Mr. Wheeler because that is the way the President wanted the article. Zimmerman, Butowsky and Fox had created fake news to advance President Trump’s agenda. Mr. Wheeler was subsequently forced to correct the false record and, as a result, lost all credibility in the eyes of the public. Mr. Wheeler has suffered irreparable damage to his reputation and his career will likely never recover.”
“Butowsky informed Mr. Wheeler two days before Zimmerman’s article came out that President Trump had read it and wanted it published ‘immediately.’ ….shortly after the article was published, Mr. Wheeler called Butowsky and demanded an explanation for the false statements about him in Zimmerman’s article. Butowsky stated that the quotes were included because that is the way the President wanted the article, referring to President Donald Trump. “
The idea that President Trump may have been working closely with Fox News in order to create false stories to divert attention from the investigations into his possible collusion with Russia, is not a new one, but this may be the first solid evidence that he did actually take such actions.
What is even more interesting is that Ed Butowsky apparently just deleted his twitter account, after the Co-Founder of The Democratic Coalition, Scott Dworkin called him out on a tweet that he made in relation to the Seth Rich conspiracy.
A Twitter user named R. Doggo 1917 tweeted a message to Ed Butowski on May 19th, stating: “@EdButowsky you never answered my inquiry about if you threatened @Robbin_Young or not are you ok! Pls respond”
Butowsky then responded: “Of course not. I simply warned her not to continue telling fibs b/c their were bad people out there around Seth’s death. She knows the truth.”
One has to wonder what about this tweet (if this is the reason) made Butowsky decide to delete his twitter account. Perhaps it’s just the filing of the lawsuit in general that encouraged Butowsky to do so. It will definitely be interesting to follow this lawsuit and see what comes of it. If Wheeler were to win the case, where would that leave President Trump in this whole mess?