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from the dude,-come-on dept

Former President Donald Trump actually has perfected each little factor he does not like being a grievance that he thinks he can sue over. It’s humorous as a result of the Republican Party used to insist that “the left” was the social gathering of victimhood, and but in Trumpist world, they’re at all times victims on a regular basis, and at all times should whine about how victimized they’re. The newest is that Trump is actually threatening to sue the Pulitzer Prize Committee in the event that they refuse to retract the 2018 prize that was given to the NY Times and the Washington Post for reporting on Russia’s tried interference with the 2016 Presidential marketing campaign.

In a letter despatched to the Pulitzer Committee, Trump lawyer Alina Habba has some, effectively, weird theories about mainly all the things.

… it’s hereby demanded that the Pulitzer Prize Board take
fast steps to strip the New York Times and The Washington Post of the 2018 Pulitzer
Prize for National Reporting. Pulitzer Prize Board’s failure to take action will lead to immediate authorized
motion being taken in opposition to it. Please be guided accordingly.

What is the idea for this? Well, Trump is massively exaggerating the current indictments of Michael Sussmann and Igor Danchenko by a grand jury working with Special Counsel John Durham. Sussmann was indicted for mendacity to the FBI concerning who he was representing when he spoke with the FBI about considerations related to what was within the Steele file. The Danchenko indictment is reasonably extra damning in suggesting that he supplied sketchy data that ended up within the Steele file, however that is obtained little to do with what the Pulitzer Prize was about.

While it is now pretty clear that elements of the Steele file had been extremely questionable (which was just about recognized from the start given the character of the way it was put collectively), Trumpworld has run ragged in arguing that this implies something in any respect about Russia’s tried interference is now disproved.

Except, that is by no means true, and Sussmann’s indictment is not even about any of that. The expenses for Sussman are fully associated as to if or not he lied to the FBI in a single dialog, not concerning the file, however about who he represented. The expenses in opposition to Danchencko are additionally about mendacity to the FBI, however concerning how he obtained sure data that was finally handed on to Steele and ended up within the file.

But, in Trumpworld, these indictments are getting used to say that something about “Russia” and the “2016 election” are utterly disproved, regardless of that not being the case in any respect.

As highlighted in President Trump’s letter, it has
not too long ago change into obvious that the topic articles had been primarily based on incontrovertibly false data
supplied by doubtful sources who had been maliciously making an attempt to mislead the general public and tarnish
our shopper’s fame.

These sources at the moment are dealing with legal expenses for his or her illicit conduct. On September 16,
2021, lawyer Michael Sussman was charged with offering false statements to the FBI when he
reported potential incidents of cooperation between our shopper and Russia. It has now been revealed
that he was performing on the behest of the Clinton Campaign and that the accusations made by him
had been fully fabricated.

Thereafter, on November 3, 2021, one other analyst related to the Clinton Campaign,
Igor Danchenko, was charged with making false statements to the FBI. Specifically, it’s alleged
that Mr. Danchenko, who has been recognized as a key contributor to the broadly debunked “Steele
Dossier,” lied to the FBI when he denied colluding with the Clinton Campaign in offering his
contributions to identical.

Despite these revelations, the Pulitzer Prize Board has didn’t take any motion to appropriate,
retract, or in any other case repudiate the false reporting contained within the topic articles.

Except, as Liz Dye at Above The Law notes, the overwhelming majority of the reporting that resulted within the Pulitzer Prize had nothing to do with the file.

Never thoughts that the prize encompassed a full yr of protection, together with tales about Russia’s social media affect operation and coordination with Wikileaks, Don Jr.’s cack-handed effort to get filth from a Russian spy — “If it’s what you say I love it especially later in the summer.” — Michael Flynn’s promise to the Russian ambassador to ditch sanctions as soon as Trump obtained elected, and FBI Director James Comey’s dismissal. None of which has been disproven.

In reality, solely one of many tales for which the prize was awarded had the file as its principal focus. It referred to the doc as “controversial” and acknowledged that the FBI might need paid investigator Chris Steele.

And, even when that wasn’t true and the reporting was concerning the file, there’s nothing that the committee did that offers a reason for motion to Donald Trump. The Pulitzer Prize is, inherently, a subjective opinion of the committee. And that is the committee’s personal protected speech. The letter claims that the committee awarded the prize “erroneously” to the Times and the Post, however that is not his name, neither is it a authorized challenge. If the Pulitzers wish to give an award to horrible reporting, that is it is essentially protected 1st Amendment proper.

In quick, Trump is saying that the Pulitzer Prize committee will not be allowed to specific an opinion, and such a risk is essentially each petty and censorial. What a tragic little man, threatening bogus censorial lawsuits over petty little grievances primarily based on somebody’s opinion he does not like.

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Filed Under: donald trump, free speech, journalism, opinion, pulitzer prize, reporting, russia, steele file, threats
Companies: ny occasions, pulitzer committee, washington put up

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