“Enough is enough of the fake Russian Dossier.”
Michael Cohen, the personal attorney for President Donald Trump, has filed two defamation lawsuits over the dossier against then-candidate Trump.
He filed the suit against Fusion GPS, which produced the dossier, in federal court and filed the suit against Buzzfeed, which published the dossier in January 2017, in state court.
— Michael Cohen (@MichaelCohen212) January 10, 2018
From ABC News:
In both suits, Cohen claims that the infamous dossier of salacious but unconfirmed allegations of collusion between members of the Trump campaign and Russian agents compiled by Fusion GPS and later published by BuzzFeed contained “false and defamatory” allegations that resulted in “harm to his personal and professional reputation, current business interests, and the impairment of business opportunities.”
According to the federal complaint, Fusion GPS, co-founded by former Wall Street Journal reporter Glenn Simpson, “recklessly placed [the dossier] beyond their control and allowed it to fall into the hands of media devoted to breaking news on the hottest subject of the day: the Trump candidacy.”
Ben Smith, editor-in-chief of Buzzfeed, wrote in an op-ed of The New York Times the pride he still feels for publishing the dossier one year later:
Our choice to publish the dossier was greeted by outrage from two sources. Journalistic traditionalists didn’t like the idea of sharing an unfiltered, unverified document with the public, whatever the caveats and context. NBC’s Chuck Todd told me on air, “You just published fake news.” Mr. Trump agreed. He described CNN’s reporting on the dossier as “fake news” and called BuzzFeed a “failing pile of garbage.”
But a year of government inquiries and blockbuster journalism has made clear that the dossier is unquestionably real news. That’s a fact that has been tacitly acknowledged even by those who opposed our decision to publish. It has helped journalists explain to their audience the investigation into Russian influence on the 2016 election. And Mr. Trump and his allies have seized on the dossier in their efforts to discredit the special counsel leading the investigation, Robert Mueller.
Without the dossier, Americans would have found it difficult to understand the actions of their elected representatives and government officials. Their posture toward Mr. Trump was, we now know even more comprehensively than we did in January 2017, shaped by Mr. Steele’s report. The Russia investigation, meanwhile, didn’t turn out to be some minor side story but instead the central challenge to Mr. Trump’s presidency.
Well, actually, Chuck Todd and other journalists who lashed out against BuzzFeed may be correct. I blogged before that even former FBI Director James Comey told Congress that the dossier was filled with “salacious and unverified” allegations against Trump and those who work with him.
Back in November, Byron York reminded everyone that the FBI has not verified the information in the 35 page dossier. The House Intelligence Committee has become frustrated by testimony from FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe since he did not provide them with more information on the dossier and contradicted testimony of former witnesses.
McCabe told the panel that the FBI worked hard “to verify the contents of the anti-Trump ‘dossier’ and stood by its credibility.” However, he could not tell the lawmakers if “the bureaur has been able to verify the substantive allegations in the dossier, or even identify a substantive allegation that has been corroborated.”
The lawmakers asked him which part of the dossier was true and McCabe only pointed to the part “that the unpaid, low-level Trump foreign policy advisor Carter Page visited Moscow in July 2016.”DONATE
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.