On This Week, Fox's Brian Kilmeade relitigates debunked falsehoods about the Trump-Russia dossier

Matthew Dowd on Kilmeade's statements: “We need to give up the David Copperfield, or Harry Houdini award for misdirection”

From the October 29 edition of ABC's This Week with George Stephanopoulos:

Video file

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS (HOST): Earlier in the week, Karen Finney, you did see a lot of these questions in tweets from the president saying collusion now between the Clintons and the Russians. And also we did learn that the Clinton’s lawyer, Marc Elias, did fund this Fusion GPS dossier.

KAREN FINNEY: Well, again, that dossier came from an American company, that we -- had originally been funded by Republicans, as you had mentioned earlier. I think what's important, though, is less who funded it and what was in the dossier. And you has you heard [Congressman] Adam Schiff (D-CA) just talking about, a number of things in the dossier have been verified. But, regardless, I think, again, with this announcement about [special counsel Robert] Mueller, what's important is that we also know that there are multiple other reasons that there’s an investigation. There is the question of obstruction of justice in the firing of [former FBI director] Jim Comey, there are these questions about Carter Page, and Michael Flynn, and Paul Manafort, and their communications and meetings with the Russians. We also learned this week that Cambridge Analytica, the company that was basically the data company for the campaign, reached out to Julian Assange of WikiLeaks. We also learned this week -- I mean, this is the other problem with this investigation, the more it goes on, it keeps growing. And that is part of the problem. As we also learned that some folks at the Kremlin actually weighed in on the memo that was part of the June 16 memo.

STEPHANOPOULOS: That was The New York Times report, Brian Kilmeade, I guess the bottom line there is, according to Democrats, this is not fake news.

BRIAN KILMEADE: Right, well, there's a lot there. First off, to your question, I think if someone's marched in Monday, tomorrow, and it has something to do with the campaign, I think it’s one thing. Number two, if it's something about Paul Manafort and what he did in the Ukraine before Donald Trump was even a candidate, then people will say, “my goodness, is this going to be widespread? Is this going to be confusing? And it's rough shot, grapeshot, looked at in the entire battlefield.” So, to the [Fusion] GPS situation, we found out it's not a candidate. We found out it was Paul Singer and his [Washington] Free Beacon. We found out that he was only looking at two candidates in particular, and he stopped the investigation as soon as Donald Trump locked up the nomination. Soon as he did that, he goes, “OK, let's see what happens, from the Republican perspective.” Then we find out that somebody else picks up this investigation, makes it international. It has a Russian element. There was no Russia element to Free Beacon-financed opposition research. That's a major difference. And then we're supposed to believe that John Podesta had no idea that $6 to $9 million is flying out of the campaign? He said he didn't know. And his lawyer, when he's saying he didn't know, Marc Elias says “oh yeah, I actually approved that.” So you’re the the lawyer sitting next to a client who's pretending he doesn't know. That's unbelievable.

MATTHEW DOWD: As Karen knows and probably Roland knows, I've been highly critical of Hillary Clinton for a long period of time and all the manifestations of everything thus far--

ROLAND MARTIN: I think all of us know that. Not just me and Karen.

DOWD: But I have to say, we need to give up the David Copperfield, or Harry Houdini award for misdirection in this thing. This reminds me of the uranium deal whole story which has been debunked along the way -- all along the way. This is a whole other story. There is no similarity between what Robert Mueller's investigation and collusion and what the Russians wanted to do and a dossier paid for, in part, by the Democrats.


The only defensible reason to have Brian Kilmeade on ABC's This Week is to ask him about sexual harassment at Fox News

How Steve Bannon and Sean Hannity's ginned-up Hillary Clinton uranium story became a congressional investigation

Contra right-wing media, US officials have verified core aspects of the Trump dossier