Donald Trump’s attempt at manipulating the media appears to have moved beyond mere threats and intimidation, and may not have expanded into outright cash bribery. One political journalist says she was offered cash payment if she was willing to publish a story praising Trump’s fiscal and foreign policies. She turned down the offer and instead went public with the details of the attempted bribe.
Lily Lynch is the Editor-in-Chief of Balkanist Magazine, a regional political news publication. She’s revealed via tweet that she “Got an email from a London-based marketing agency offering me $100 to publish an article praising Trump’s fiscal policy and plan for Syria.” The agency even went so far as to tell her which photo of Trump she was supposed to use in the story.
Lynch went on to clarify that the agency didn’t tell her in exact words that the article had to be pro-Trump, but instead that she was supposed to publish “a relevant & original article” about Trump’s fiscal policy and Syrian plans. But that sounds a lot like the agency was merely trying to build in a degree of plausible deniability against accusations of bribery if anyone did indeed expose them for it – and its intent was clear.
This raises the question of why the marketing agency was willing to pay for positive coverage of Donald Trump, and if the agency is coordinating with Trump on this scheme. If not, then why is the agency doing this? And now that it’s been exposed, if Trump isn’t behind it, will he denounce it?
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report