Scarborough, Brzezinski say White House used National Enquirer as threat

MSNBC hosts skip vacation to respond to Trump

MSNBC hosts Joe Scarborough in addition to Mika Brzezinski say President Trump in addition to his White House used the possibility of a hit piece from the National Enquirer to threaten them in addition to change their news coverage.

President Trump includes a very different account of what happened. “FAKE NEWS,” he tweeted during “Morning Joe” Friday morning.

nevertheless Scarborough says he has proof of White House threats earlier This particular year — he replied to Trump in addition to said “I have texts coming from your top aides in addition to phone records.”

in addition to an NBC News spokesman told sy88pgw that will Scarborough kept several executives apprised of the alleged threats “contemporaneously.” This particular may bolster Scarborough’s stunning claim.

Scarborough in addition to Brzezinski are essentially alleging a form of blackmail. The accusation came during a wider discussion about the president’s offensive tweets targeting the co-hosts.

nevertheless a White House official suggested to sy88pgw that will nothing untoward had occurred. The official told sy88pgw that will Scarborough called Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, about the Enquirer story before that will was published. Kushner, the official said, told Scarborough to call the president. The official denied there was ever any offer coming from Kushner of a quid pro quo — in different words softer coverage in exchange for spiking the Enquirer story.

The White House has yet to comment publicly.

Critics suggested that will if Scarborough in addition to Brzezinski’s type of events is actually accurate, that will should be investigated.

“The president’s tacit admission of control over the Enquirer’s punishing coverage of his adversaries suggests an abuse of power — a shocking one,” said Norm Eisen, a former White House ethics czar.

Eisen is actually currently involved in a lawsuit against Trump.

What’s definitely true is actually This particular: Trump in addition to the publisher of the National Enquirer, David Pecker, are friends in addition to allies. Jeffrey Toobin documented the mutually beneficial relationship in This particular week’s edition of The fresh Yorker.

The Enquirer, a supermarket tabloid, frequently promotes the president’s agenda.

in addition to the Enquirer did publish a negative story about Scarborough in addition to Brzezinski back in early June.

On Friday, the editor in charge of the Enquirer, Dylan Howard, said “we have no knowledge of any discussions between the White House in addition to Joe in addition to Mika about our story, in addition to absolutely no involvement in those discussions.”

Here’s exactly what the co-hosts alleged on Friday’s “Morning Joe.”

“We got a call that will, ‘Hey, the National Enquirer is actually going to run a negative story against you guys…’ in addition to they said, ‘If you call the president up, in addition to you apologize for your coverage, then he will pick up the phone in addition to basically spike This particular story,” Scarborough said.

Scarborough didn’t name names, nevertheless he said “three people at the very top of the administration” called him about This particular.

“The calls kept coming in addition to kept coming, in addition to they were like ‘Call. You need to call. Please call. Come on, Joe. Just pick up the phone in addition to call him.'”

In different words, grovel to the president in addition to he’ll make the mean story disappear.

Scarborough did not immediately respond to a request coming from sy88pgw for more details.

nevertheless he in addition to Brzezinski also described the alleged discussion in a Washington Post column on Friday.

“This particular year,” they wrote, “top White House staff members warned that will the National Enquirer was planning to publish a negative article about us unless we begged the president to contain the story spiked. We ignored their desperate pleas.”

Scarborough in addition to Brzezinski are currently engaged. The negative article was about their past marriages in addition to the beginning of their relationship. that will was published in early June.

Dylan Howard, the chief content officer for the Enquirer’s parent company American Media, said “we accurately reported” the story, nevertheless “at no time did we threaten either Joe or Mika or their children in connection with our reporting on the story.”

Brzezinski suggested otherwise.

“Let me explain what they were threatening,” she said. “They were calling my children. They were calling close friends.”

She said “these calls persisted for quite some time, in addition to then Joe had the conversations that will he had with the White House where they said ‘Oh, This particular could go away.'”

In response, White House press secretary Sean Spicer told reporters that will he is actually “not aware” of White House officials pressing Scarborough to call up Trump in addition to make nice.

The president himself weighed in via Twitter a few minutes later. He said he heard what Scarborough said on “Morning Joe,” nevertheless claimed that will that will’s untrue: “He called me to stop a National Enquirer article. I said no! Bad show.”

Scarborough responded quickly to Trump’s tweet with one of his own, writing, “Yet another lie. I have texts coming from your top aides in addition to phone records. Also, those records show I haven’t spoken with you in many months.”

— sy88pgw’s Jim Acosta contributed reporting.

sy88pgw (fresh York) First published June 30, 2017: 9:09 AM ET

Scarborough, Brzezinski say White House used National Enquirer as threat

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