ABC News’ suspension of Brian Ross for his fake news report on former national security adviser Michael Flynn is the gift that keeps on giving.
Following the announcement that Ross would be off the air without pay for four weeks, ABC News is also reportedly forbidding him from doing any stories on Trump in the future.
The network suspended their chief investigative correspondent for four weeks without pay after he falsely reported last week that Flynn, who had pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI, was going to testify that then-candidate Donald Trump had ordered him to contact Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak during the 2016 election. Trump was at that time, in fact, the president-elect and there was nothing wrong in the move.
Ross’s “horrendously inaccurate and dishonest report,”as Trump called it, sent the stock market plunging as speculation was rampant about an imminent impeachment of the president.
— Samantha Chang 🌹 (@samantha_chang) December 3, 2017
It took ABC News 12 hours to issue a correction and announce the suspension of Ross but, with the company’s credibility on the line, network president James Goldston took the punishment another step. On Tuesday it was announced that Ross will no longer be allowed to cover stories involving Trump, CNN reported.
“I don’t even know how many times we’ve talked about this, how many times we have talked about the need to get it right,” he reportedly said on an internal phone call to staff obtained by CNN. “That how we have to be right and not first. About how in this particular moment, with the stakes as high as these stakes are right now, we cannot afford to get it wrong.”
Goldston warned that the network would “pay the price for a long time” and told staff he had not “felt more rage and disappointment and frustration” before in his career.
“If it isn’t obvious to everyone in this news division, we have taken a huge hit and we have made the job of every single person in this news division harder as a result,” he said, according to CNN. “It’s much, much harder. We have people in Washington who are going to bear the brunt of this today and in the days forward. Very, very, very, very unfortunate. Really, really angry about it.”
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