This could spell trouble for ABC.
The network that was exposed early this month as having killed a story about infamous pedophile Jeffrey Epstein three years ago is facing new pressure from House Republican leaders to explain why it sat on a story that had explosive ramifications for top levels of American and British politics.
In a letter obtained Sunday by journalist Megyn Kelly, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy wrote to ABC News to demand an answer to why network executives refused to air a piece by anchor Amy Robach three years ago.
Robach was seen in a video leaked to Project Veritas and published Nov. 5 complaining on camera in an August diatribe that she had been unable to go public with a story the whole country was talking about in the wake of Epstein’s Aug. 10 death in a federal prison in New York City.
“It was unbelievable what we had — Clinton, we had everything,” Robach said in the video, referring to former President Bill Clinton, who had ties to Epstein. “I tried for three years to get it on, to no avail, and now it’s all coming out, and it’s like these new revelations and I freaking had all of it.”
Now McCarthy wants to know why the American people weren’t told what ABC executives were.
In the video, Robach said she had interviewed Epstein accuser Virginia Roberts Giuffre, who said, among other things, that she was forced to have sex three times with Britain’s Prince Andrew.
“I am deeply concerned that this victim, in search of justice, went to ABC News, provided information and an interview, and then ABC News chose to bury the truth,” McCarthy wrote to ABC News President James Goldstone in a letter that was published on Kelly’s Instagram account.
“What appears to have been presented to Ms. Robach is first-hand evidence of human trafficking,” the California Republican wrote. “I am deeply concerned that this victim, in search of justice, went to ABC News, provided information and an interview, and then ABC News chose to bury the truth. This was a decision that Ms. Robach alluded was due to protecting powerful people or financial interests.”
Epstein’s death — officially ruled a suicide, though questions surround the case — was an abrupt, potentially final, disruption of a criminal prosecution that could well have ensnared major names.
Clinton, for instance, was a known associate of Epstein who had traveled on the financier’s private plane — known as the “Lolita Express” — on numerous occasions.
Three years ago, of course, Clinton’s wife, Hillary, was running for the presidency of the United States.
While she was replete with her own character flaws and political and legal baggage, it’s pretty obvious that a televised report linking her husband with a convicted sex offender would not have played well with voters. (A certain kind of Democrat might not even care about that, but the rest of the country is considerably more sensible.)
Was ABC News protecting Hillary Clinton’s presidential run?
And then there were the British royals, whom Robach specifically cited in her on-camera complaining. Did ABC sacrifice its journalistic mission to preserve its access to a family whose activities fascinate American viewers?
In a video also posted to her Instagram account, Kelly said the letter suggests Epstein might have been able to victimize more young women because of ABC’s inaction.
At the time of the Project Veritas release, ABC News claimed it withheld the story from publication because it didn’t meet the network’s standards. (That’s a claim that barely passes the laugh test.)
Other than launching an internal witch hunt to find out who leaked the video to Project Veritas and persuading CBS News to fire a former ABC News employee suspected of being involved, ABC has been quiet about the scandal unleashed by Robach’s remarks.
That might have to change, considering the new interest being taken in Congress.
And even the party that’s out of power can wield power on Capitol Hill, so that interest could spell trouble for ABC.
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