CNN's Big Scoop on Don Jr. - Wikileaks Email Collapses In Real Time

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The new reports said Trump Jr. and other campaign officials had received an email pointing them to the WikiLeaks documents on the afternoon of September 14 - after they had already been made public.

The email was sent in early September of a year ago and just a few weeks before WikiLeaks and Donald Trump Jr. exchanged messages directly with each other on Twitter, the report said.

CNN attributed significance to the email because it allegedly was dated September 4, nine days before the Wikileaks documents in question were made public.

The full email - which was first described to CNN as being sent on September 4, 10 days earlier - indicates that the writer may have simply been flagging information that was already widely available.

"They apologized! Oh, thank you CNN", he said. But the biggest piece of the story, that Trump Jr. knew about the documents before others did, turned out to be false.

That email, reported CNN, was dated September 4, 2016, and as the story details, the timing was significant. An attorney for Donald Trump Jr. told the Post that the campaign received "a ton of unsolicited emails like this on a variety of topics".

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He released direct messages on Twitter he had exchanged with Wikileaks after a report from The Atlantic magazine brought the communications to light.

Correction: This story has been corrected to say the date of the email was September 14, 2016, not September 4, 2016.

CNN's story finds itself at a significant disadvantage to The Post story.

Hours later, The Washington Post published a story that first brought out the discrepancy in the timeline.

CNN added that the email "indicated that the Trump campaign could access records from former Secretary of State Colin Powell, whose hacked emails were made public by a Russian front group 10 days later". The centrality of time stamps to scandal coverage is a theme of recent major-media screw-ups on the Trump-Russia conflagration. Last Friday, ABC News' Brian Ross reported based on one source that Michael Flynn was prepared to testify that as a candidate Trump instructed him to make contact with Russians. Cue the walk-back. No scandal here. I have said before that CNN should abandon all of its television programming, and simply fill the screen with a sign that says, "We hate President Trump". Asked about possible disciplinary measures, a CNN source responded, "There will not be any disciplinary action taken because every procedure put in place as part of the editorial process was followed. They should have fired him for what he wrote", Trump said.

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