Presidential debate moderator Steve Scully suspended by C-SPAN for concocting Twitter ‘hack’ claim
Scully was indefinitely suspended on Thursday, after admitting that he hadn’t been hacked after all. He constructed the hacking story a week ago, after tweeting “should I respond to Trump” at former White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci, now a committed anti-Trumper.
The tweet – evidently intended to be a private message – was sent after the president called the C-SPAN editor a “never Trumper,” on account of his past work in Joe Biden’s Senate office. Scully himself immediately claimed to have been tricked by hackers.Also on rt.com 'He was hacked, it didn't happen': Debate commission defends moderator Steve Scully after cryptic tweet about Trump sparks outrage
However, in a statement released on Thursday, Scully admitted that he had “falsely claimed that my Twitter account was hacked,” and apologized for his “errors in judgment.”
When the story first surfaced last week, C-SPAN initially went to the mat for Scully, an employee of the network for 30 years. The outlet said that Scully “did not originate the tweet,” and the Commission on Presidential Debates supported the hacking story.
The second sentence here did not age well. https://t.co/jMBRhUy286— Team Trump (Text VOTE to 88022) (@TeamTrump) October 15, 2020
Other journalists and Scaramucci also had defended Scully. CNN's Joe Lockhart went so far as to tweet that anyone who questions Scully "is a damn liar."
FACT -- if Steve Scully says he didn't send it you can take it to the bank. Period. Anyone who questions him or makes accusations is a damn liar. https://t.co/W8Ri1TyWWz— Joe Lockhart (@joelockhart) October 9, 2020
Many conservatives weren’t fooled, though. Trump accused Scully of “pulling the old ‘I’ve been hacked’ line,” while pundit Mike Cernovich said that Scully was “betting his reputation on a cover-up working.”
Steve Scully wasn’t hacked. He made a mistake by posting to Mooch, a minor mistake, and he’s betting his reputation on a cover up working. https://t.co/9VvbIzAlZb— Cernovich (@Cernovich) October 9, 2020
Trump was quick to tweet after news broke of Scully admitting concocting the hacking claim and his suspension. “I was right again,” he jeered. “The Debate was Rigged!...Did I show good instincts in being the first to know?”
I was right again! Steve Scully just admitted he was lying about his Twitter being hacked. The Debate was Rigged! He was suspended from @cspan indefinitely. The Trump Campaign was not treated fairly by the “Commission”. Did I show good instincts in being the first to know?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 15, 2020
Scully was slated to host the second presidential debate between Trump and Joe Biden on Thursday evening. However, Trump pulled out when the Commission on Presidential Debates announced last week that the debate would be a virtual one. “I’m not going to waste my time on a virtual debate,” he said “That’s not what debating is all about.”
In lieu of an in-person showdown, both Trump and Biden are hosting competing town hall events on NBC and ABC respectively on Thursday night.
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