The White House has denied helping to craft a Fox News story implicating murdered Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich in the WikiLeaks scandal, as is alleged in a lawsuit filed today against Fox.
"I've never talked to President Trump in my life", Butowsky said, denying that the White House had "anything to do with any of this". Wheeler apparently did so and didn't make much progress, but he did find out enough to realize that subsequent Fox News stories on the case were untrue.
Throughout his interview with CNN's Chris Cuomo Tuesday night, Butowsky pushed back against several of Wheeler's claims, sometimes giving confusing and convoluted answers. A cable news insider told The Daily Caller that Wheeler is viewed as not that smart of a commentator and if anything he was benefited by his minority status.
The suit alleges that Butowsky was in regular contact with Spicer, top Trump adviser Steve Bannon, and the Justice Department's public affairs spokesperson.
Fox later retracted the story because it was unfounded. However, in a little-noticed statement on May 22 from Wheeler published on FetchYourNews, the former D.C. detective said, "I am of the personal opinion that the information/article reported by FoxNews Channel last Tuesday was essentially correct and worthy of further investigation. They were just informing me of the story".
While many knew about Feinberg's dismissal from Sputnik and his opinion that his former employer is a propaganda machine, the allegations that he was sacked for refusing to help spread, and bring to light, the bogus Seth Rich conspiracy theory, appears to mean one thing: Russian Federation, like President Trump was trying to help push, spread and develop a Seth Rich story line that they knew certain media outlets would agree to publish. "Mr. Wheeler did not write or approve the response".
"I'm not sure, Peter", Sanders said.
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Fox retracted Zimmerman's article a week after it was posted, saying it did not meet their reporting standards.
Now comes more intrigue, as former Sputnik News White House correspondent, Andrew Feinberg, made an announcement which seems, at least on the surface, to implicate Vladimir Putin himself as one of the conspirators in creating and pushing the Seth Rich story. "In fact, the only purported source saying that Seth Rich sent any emails to WikiLeaks was Butowsky and Zimmerman's supposed source within the Federal Bureau of Investigation", the suit says. This interview is addressed in the lawsuit, but somehow claims Wheeler was above board. In May, Fox published stories based on unfounded allegations that Rich was targeted because he was leaking information to WikiLeaks that would damage the DNC. Spurred on by WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange's suggestions in August 2016 that Rich might have been the source of the data to WikiLeaks not the Russians, conspiracy theories grew about the connection.
WHEELER: "Absolutely. Yeah. That's confirmed".
He says Wheeler "just wants money". "This person, we checked him out, we have to check him out, very credible".
The full text of the lawsuit follows below.
The Rich family agreed to hire the private investigator.