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NBC’s Mitchell: Hunter Biden Scandal Must Be a Russian Plot!



Desperate to help the Biden campaign bury the latest bombshell developments in the Hunter Biden scandal, on Monday, NBC’s senior Washington correspondent Andrea Mitchell appeared on the Today show to push the unfounded DNC conspiracy theory that the entire story was part of a Russian plot to interfere in the presidential election.

“Also this morning, there are new questions about an unverified report targeting Joe Biden’s son and new reporting about possible ties to a Russian disinformation effort aimed at influencing the U.S. election,” co-host Hoda Kotb proclaimed at the top of the propaganda segment. Mitchell then warned: “NBC News has confirmed that U.S. spy agencies have gathered intelligence that the President’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, was dealing with alleged Russian intelligence agents last year on a trip to Ukraine as part of his effort to dig up dirt on Joe Biden.”

 

 

Despite the fact that Fox News had already confirmed some of the elements of the story, Mitchell tried to conflate the newly-revealed Hunter Biden emails with questions about a Ukrainian official Giuliani met with in 2019:

Chief among the alleged Russian agents Rudy Giuliani was dealing with in Ukraine last December, this man, Andriy Derkach, named by the U.S. Treasury in September as a Russian agent and sanctioned for allegedly running an influence campaign against Biden….Giuliani has been digging for information on Hunter Biden’s work with Burisma, a Ukrainian energy company and Joe Biden’s dealings with Ukraine and China as vice president…. Derkach is part of a Russian effort to interfere in the election against Biden by, quote, “spreading claims about corruption – including through publicizing leaked phone calls,” according to an August statement by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.  

A soundbite ran of NBC News national security analyst Jeremy Bash, a former Obama administration official, ominously declaring: “If Russian intelligence is feeding information through Derkach to Giuliani, it means that Russian intelligence is making its way into the election blood stream.”

Mitchell whined: “The President using all of it to attack Hunter Biden over the weekend.” After a clip ran of Trump referencing how “They found Hunter’s laptop,” Mitchell devoted only seconds to actually explaining the details of the scandal:

Last week, Giuliani and former Trump official Steve Bannon provided The New York Post with unverified emails, allegedly linking one of Hunter Biden’s Ukrainian partners with a possible meeting with Joe Biden when he was vice president. A meeting the Biden campaign says never took place. Experts say the emails cannot be authenticated, some may have been altered or are fake.

Bash returned to offer completely unsubstantiated speculation: “We have no idea whether or not the emails are legitimate, but this whole operation looks right out of the Kremlin playbook, hack and dump.”

CBS has repeatedly promoted the same wild claims without evidence and multiple media outlets rushed to immediately reject the news.

As NewsBusters reported, during the first 92 hours after The New York Post broke the story, the Big Three broadcast networks (NBC, ABC, and CBS), as well as cable channels MSNBC and CNN, only offered a pathetic nine minutes to the news.

Despite Mitchell’s thinly-veiled contempt for the topic, it was just eight months ago that Today show co-host Savannah Guthrie grilled Joe Biden on his son’s “sleazy” business dealings in Ukraine and China.

Mitchell spinning conspiracy theories was brought to viewers by Suburu and Honda. You can fight back by letting these advertisers know what you think of them sponsoring such content.

Here is a full transcript of the October 19 segment:

7:09 AM ET

HODA KOTB: Also this morning, there are new questions about an unverified report targeting Joe Biden’s son and new reporting about possible ties to a Russian disinformation effort aimed at influencing the U.S. election. NBC’s senior Washington correspondent Andrea Mitchell has details on this. Hey, Andrea, good morning.

ANDREA MITCHELL: Hi, there, Hoda. NBC News has confirmed that U.S. spy agencies have gathered intelligence that the President’s personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, was dealing with alleged Russian intelligence agents last year on a trip to Ukraine as part of his effort to dig up dirt on Joe Biden. As first reported by The Washington Post, the fact that those contacts occurred was passed on to the White House.

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: New Questions About Hunter Biden Report; Are Giuliani Emails Tied to Russian Disinformation Efforts?]

Chief among the alleged Russian agents Rudy Giuliani was dealing with in Ukraine last December, this man, Andriy Derkach, named by the U.S. Treasury in September as a Russian agent and sanctioned for allegedly running an influence campaign against Biden. In February, Giuliani hosted Derkach on his podcast in New York.

RUDY GIULIANI: We have the honor of having with us a member of the Rada, the parliament of Ukraine, Mr. Andriy Derkach.

MITCHELL: Giuliani has been digging for information on Hunter Biden’s work with Burisma, a Ukrainian energy company and Joe Biden’s dealings with Ukraine and China as vice president. U.S. intelligence agencies were not spying on Giuliani, but on the people he was talking to in Ukraine, including Derkach, according to a source familiar with the matter. Derkach is part of a Russian effort to interfere in the election against Biden by, quote, “spreading claims about corruption – including through publicizing leaked phone calls,” according to an August statement by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.  

JEREMY BASH [NBC NEWS NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST]: If Russian intelligence is feeding information through Derkach to Giuliani, it means that Russian intelligence is making its way into the election blood stream.

MITCHELL: Giuliani denies knowing his contacts were Russian agents.

GIULIANI [SEPTEMBER 12]: Well, Derkach has noting to do with Biden, zero. And I did not know he was a Russian agent.

MITCHELL: The President using all of it to attack Hunter Biden over the weekend.

DONALD TRUMP: They found Hunter’s laptop. Where is Hunter? Where is Hunter? Hunter’s not doing so well.

MITCHELL: Last week, Giuliani and former Trump official Steve Bannon provided The New York Post with unverified emails, allegedly linking one of Hunter Biden’s Ukrainian partners with a possible meeting with Joe Biden when he was vice president. A meeting the Biden campaign says never took place. Experts say the emails cannot be authenticated, some may have been altered or are fake.

BASH: We have no idea whether or not the emails are legitimate, but this whole operation looks right out of the Kremlin playbook, hack and dump.

MITCHELL: During the Obama administration, Vice President Biden pushed to end political corruption in Ukraine, and that was a policy universally accepted by the U.S., the European Union, the IMF, and the World Bank. Hoda?  

KOTB: Alright, Andrea Mitchell for us in Washington. Andrea, thank you.



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