President Donald Trump on Sunday weighed in on the controversy surrounding ABC News’ alleged refusal to air a story and interviews involving disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, a convicted sex offender.
Undercover investigative journalism nonprofit Project Veritas last week posted footage that showed ABC anchor Amy Robach lamenting the network not airing a exposé she worked on about Epstein based on an interview and evidence provided by Virginia Roberts, a woman who has accused Epstein of abusing her while she was a minor.
“We would not put it on the air. First of all, I was told, ‘Who’s Jeffrey Epstein? No one knows who that is. This is a stupid story,’” Robach said about the internationally known convicted sex offender.
Trump on Sunday morning retweeted a video of Jesse Watters on Fox News’ “Watters’ Words,” during which he blasted the network for extensively covering unproven allegations against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh without evidence and later refusing to report on the Epstein.
The president added his own commentary in his tweet: “ABC is as bad as the rest of them. Journalistic standards are nonexistent today. The press is so dishonest that we no longer have Freedom of the Press!”
ABC is as bad as the rest of them. Journalistic standards are nonexistent today. The press is so dishonest that we no longer have Freedom of the Press! https://t.co/nzF31cLYw7
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 10, 2019
The ABC story apparently involved Prince Andrew, former President Bill Clinton, and high-profile attorney Alan Dershowitz, Robach said.
“[Roberts] told me everything. She had pictures. She had everything. She was in hiding for 12 years. We convinced her to come out. We convinced her to talk to us,” Robach said.
In a statement after the leaked video was released, Robach had changed her tune: “As a journalist, as the Epstein story continued to unfold last summer, I was caught in a private moment of frustration. I was upset that an important interview I had conducted with Virginia Roberts didn’t air because we could not obtain sufficient corroborating evidence to meet ABC’s editorial standards about her allegations.”
“I just clipped it off. I essentially left it in the system. It never left the system. We do it all the time,” she said.
According to The New York City Medical Examiner’s Office, Epstein killed himself via hanging in August.
His case became the subject of controversy again after famed pathologist Dr. Michael Baden and Epstein’s brother, Mark Epstein, issued statements on his death that countered the official conclusions.
“Those are unexplained. Was he handcuffed and struggled? Was someone holding his wrists? The marks on his wrist are unexplained,” Mark Epstein told Fox News on Nov. 6.
Baden, meanwhile, said there were questions about Jeffrey Epstein’s neck injury.
“Did the injuries happen a week before or at the time of the incident? We have to look at the microscopic slides to see when the injuries occurred,” Baden said of the injuries noted by the brother, according to Fox. “The brother requested this information three months ago and he still has not gotten it.”
The medical examiner issued a statement saying that they stand by the conclusion that his death was a suicide.
“Our investigation concluded that the cause of Mr. Epstein’s death was hanging and the manner of death was suicide. We stand by that determination,” Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Barbara Sampson told the Washington Examiner. “We continue to share information around the medical investigation with Mr. Epstein’s family, their representatives, and their pathology consultant. The original medical investigation was thorough and complete. There is no reason for a second medical investigation by our office.”
Epoch Times reporter Zachary Stieber contributed to this article.