Officials with the Washington Post said the paper won’t publish former President Donald Trump’s response to a lengthy investigative story published this week about the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol Building because they said his statement contained unfounded claims about election integrity and other irrelevant remarks.
“The Post investigation was based on interviews with 230 people and thousands of pages of court documents and internal law enforcement reports, along with hundreds of videos, photographs and audio recordings,” the paper noted in its introduction to the three-part series published on Monday. “The Post provided Trump a list of 37 findings reported as part of its investigation.”
Taylor Budowich, a spokesman for the former president, provided the paper with a response; the paper said that the statement was “a lengthy written response that included series of unrelated, inflammatory claims that The Post is not publishing in full.”
The paper also said that Budowich noted Trump “greatly objected” to all of the findings and dismissed them as “fake news.” He also said that people who engaged in violence at the U.S. Capitol Building the same day Trump gave a speech were “agitators not associated with President Trump.”
The Post noted that Budowich said the former president “greatly objected” to all of the newspaper’s findings, dismissing it as “fake news” and describing people who carried out violence at the Capitol that day as “agitators not associated with President Trump.”
The paper’s reporting staff looked at the weeks leading up to the riot, saying that the former president, his legal team, and political allies all pushed false or misleading claims regarding election fraud that then contributed to events that took place that day. In addition, the series also examined law enforcement responses and failings in making preparations for anticipated violence.
“The media’s obsession with the January 6th protest is a blatant attempt to overshadow a simple fact: there is no greater threat to America than leftist journalists and the Fake News, which has avoided a careful examination of the fraudulent 2020 election,” said a portion of the former president’s response that the Post did publish.
“The media, just like the Democrats, do not want to see secure and honest elections. Instead of reporting the facts, outlets like the Washington Post sow division, hate, and lies, like it is doing with this story,” the published excerpt continued.
Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal last week defended a decision to publish in full a letter to the editor from Trump refuting claims the newspaper made regarding his loss in Pennsylvania nearly a year ago.
“The progressive parsons of the press are aflutter that we published a letter to the editor Thursday from former President Trump, objecting to our editorial pointing out that he lost Pennsylvania last year by 80,555 votes,” the Journal’s editors wrote. “We trust our readers to make up their own minds about his statement. And we think it’s news when an ex-President who may run in 2024 wrote what he did, even if (or perhaps especially if) his claims are bananas.
“As for the media clerics, their attempts to censor Mr. Trump have done nothing to diminish his popularity,” the WSJ’s editors continued. “Our advice would be to examine their own standards after they fell so easily for false Russian collusion claims. They’d have more credibility in refuting Mr. Trump’s.”
Several polls throughout this year indicate most Republicans still support Trump and are eager to see him run again in 2024.
The Post’s series was published just as Fox News host Tucker Carlson released the first of a three-part series on the network’s streaming service, Fox Nation, titled, “Patriot Purge.” Carlson has promoted the series as the most comprehensive look at what happened on Jan. 6 than has ever been undertaken, adding that his series answers several “questions” Americans still have about the incident.
To Trump’s point about agitators, J. Michael Waller, a senior analyst for strategy at the Center for Security Policy who specializes in propaganda, political warfare, psychological warfare, and subversion, wrote a week after the riot in a piece for The Federalist that he saw “provocateurs” operating among the crowd and that the incident “bore the markings of an organized operation planned well in advance of the Jan. 6 joint session of Congress.”
His observations included witnessed “plainclothes militants,” “agents provocateur,” “fake Trump protesters,” and a “disciplined, uniform column of attackers.”
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