ABC's Ross gave misleading account of Obama statements in order to assert inconsistency

››› ››› JAMISON FOSER

On Good Morning America, ABC's Brian Ross gave a misleading account of Sen. Barack Obama's comments regarding a real estate transaction to assert that Obama has "given a series of various explanations about the deal."

In a January 10 report about a real estate transaction involving Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) and Tony Rezko, ABC's Brian Ross gave a misleading account of Obama's comments about the transaction in order to portray Obama as having "given a series of various explanations about the deal."

Ross reported, "For his part, Obama has given a series of various explanations about the deal. First, he told the Chicago Tribune that he didn't recall what his conversations were with Rezko. Four days later, he told the Chicago Sun-Times that he did recall telling Rezko about the property."

In fact, the accounts in the Tribune and the Sun-Times are similar. And in both papers, he was quoted indicating that he did not clearly recall what happened.

The Tribune reported that "Obama raised the possibility that he was the first to bring the lot to Rezko's attention" and quoted Obama as saying, "I may have mentioned to him the name of [a developer and] he may at that point have contacted that person. I'm not clear about that."

The Sun-Times quoted Obama as saying, "To the best of my recollection, I told him about the property, and he developed an interest, knowing both the location and, as I recall, the developer who had previously purchased it."

From the January 10 edition of ABC's Good Morning America:

ROSS: For his part, Obama has given a series of various explanations about the deal. First, he told the Chicago Tribune that he didn't recall what his conversations were with Rezko. Four days later, he told the Chicago Sun-Times that he did recall telling Rezko about the property.

From the November 1, 2006, Chicago Tribune:

Obama said his family's real estate broker brought the house to his wife's attention. He said he discussed the house with Rezko but isn't sure how Rezko began pursuing the adjacent lot. But Obama raised the possibility that he was the first to bring the lot to Rezko's attention.

"I don't recall exactly what our conversations were or where I first learned, and I am not clear what the circumstances were where he made a decision that he was interested in the property," Obama said.

"I may have mentioned to him the name of [a developer and] he may at that point have contacted that person. I'm not clear about that," Obama said.

From the November 5, 2006, Chicago Sun-Times:

Q: Did you approach Rezko or his wife about the property, or did they approach you?

A: To the best of my recollection, I told him about the property, and he developed an interest, knowing both the location and, as I recall, the developer who had previously purchased it.

Stories/Interests
Barack Obama, 2008 Elections
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