An attorney for President Trump demanded on Wednesday that NBC retract host Lawrence O’Donnell’s report alleging that Trump had obtained loan guarantees from Russian oligarchs.
O’Donnell reported on MSNBC on Tuesday night that Russian oligarchs had co-signed a loan provided to Trump by Deutsche Bank.
“This single source close to Deutsche Bank has told me that the Trump — Donald Trump’s loan documents there show that he has co-signers,” he said. “That’s how he was able to obtain those loans. And that the co-signers are Russian oligarchs.”
In a letter sent to the network, Trump attorney Charles Harder calls the statement “false and defamatory” and requests that O’Donnell and the network “immediately and prominently retract, correct and apologize” for the remarks.
Harder also addressed the statement directly, writing that the only borrowers under the loans were Trump entities and that Trump is the only guarantor on the account.
“Actual malice can easily be proven based on your reckless disregard of the truth and unreasonable reliance on an alleged ‘source’ who you will not even identify in your story and likely is seeking to mislead you and the public for political reasons or other ulterior motives,” Harder wrote in the letter.
In response, O’Donnell released a statement on Twitter, writing, “Last night I made an error in judgment by reporting an item about the president’s finances that didn’t go through our rigorous verification and standards process. I shouldn’t have reported it and I was wrong to discuss it on the air. I will address the issue on my show tonight.”
NBC did not immediately respond to a request for comment.