In frantic damage control mode, ABC’s George Stephanopoulos ran to the safe zone of the left-wing Politico to announce the he will recuse himself from ABC’s February GOP debate in New Hampshire. He also admitted that the total amount he contributed to the Clinton Foundation was a whopping $75,000, not the $50,000, as originally reported.
The chief anchor and political correspondent at ABC News now admits he should never have donated money to the Clinton Foundation, and that he should have disclosed his donations to ABC News viewers.
As of now, probably as they gauge the fallout, ABC News stands by Stephanopoulos. He told Politico he intends to go back to business as usual, co-anchoring “Good Morning America” and hosting the Sunday news show ‘This Week.”
Stephanopoulos also said he would continue to cover the 2016 presidential election.
The seediness of everyone’s behavior in this matter — Stephanopoulos and ABC News — goes way beyond what unraveled the career of NBC News anchor Brian Williams.
Williams’s sins primarily involved some sort of pathological need to puff himself up.
While assuming the role of a network news anchor, Stephanopoulos continued a Big Money relationship with the Clintons through their foundation, vigorously (and bizarrely) defended the Clintons after the foundation scandal hit, and lied by way of omission about his $75,000 conflict of interest.
When confronted with the Williams’ scandal, NBC News behaved like adults. The network suspended the anchor for 6 months without pay, and launched an internal investigation.
NBC News also suspended Keith Olbermann for not disclosing a campaign contribution of less than $10,000.
By comparison, instead of disciplining their anchor over his cover-up of a massive conflict of interest, after Stephanopoulos and ABC News were caught by the Washington Free Beacon, like a sleazy unethical politician, they ran to Politico to disguise themselves as being proactive in admitting to the donations.
The cover-ups, the spin, the lies, the ongoing relationship involving Big Money — ABC News and the symbol of its news division have a much bigger credibility problem than NBC News.
As Breitbart News reveals here, the ABC News’ Clinton Protection Racket involves more than just Stephanopoulos.
John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC