Brian Ross removed from Trump coverage after suspension ends, ABC News says

Brian Ross speaks on

In a statement, ABC said, "We deeply regret and apologize for the serious error we made yesterday".

Brian Ross reported in a live segment on Friday that Flynn meant to testify that President Donald Trump had "directed him to make contact with the Russians" when Trump was still a presidential candidate.

Multiple ABC News employees, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to publicly discuss the issue, told CNN there is widespread discussion about Ross' credibility moving forward. Trump on Saturday tweeted congratulations to ABC News for suspending Ross because of what the president called his "horrendously inaccurate and dishonest report on the Russia, Russia, Russia witch hunt". "That how we have to be right and not first. As a result of our continued reporting over the next several hours ultimately we determined the information was wrong and we corrected the mistake on air and online", ABC News said in a statement after USA stocks were shaken. "We fell far short of that yesterday".

Following the announcement that Ross would be off the air without pay for four weeks, ABC News is also reportedly forbidding him from doing any stories on Trump in the future.

Goldston noted that ABC News "spent this weekend getting absolutely pilloried as a news division for reporting fake news". Hours later, a spokesperson told CNN a correction was forthcoming. The next morning, he ramped up his language, tweeting that "people who lost money when the stock market went down 350 points" after Ross' reporting "should consider hiring a lawyer and suing ABC". Later, the clarification was amended to a correction. Later, Friday evening, the network issued a full blown correction in a written statement.

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Ross commented later Saturday night.

- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 3, 2017My job is to hold people accountable and that's why I agree with being held accountable myself. "And if you are watching at home, have no doubts about fake news now being a clear, present danger to the Trump administration".

On Saturday, ABC News apologized for the error and announced Ross' suspension.

Friday's fumble was another in a series of black marks for Ross, who has been at ABC News since 1994 after spending almost two decades at NBC. "It makes me sick to my stomach".

Hannity wasn't the only one unhappy with Ross's mistake, which came after Flynn pleaded guilty to a charge of lying to the FBI as part of Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into whether the Trump team colluded with Russian Federation to influence the presidential election. In 2012, after the tragic Aurora shooting, Ross reported that the shooter, James Holmes, might be a member of the Tea Party Movement.

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