BuzzFeed published a slew of salacious claims Tuesday that stem from an unsubstantiated report claiming Russia has information about President-elect Donald Trump that could potentially compromise him.
The report included what the publication called unverifiable claims that Trump colluded with Russian officials in operations that targeted his political opponents. BuzzFeed’s report also notes “graphic claims of sexual acts” involving sex workers allegedly hired by Trump in Russia.
Here are a few of the details BuzzFeed published:
- Russian officials allegedly fed Trump information about his political opponents including his Democratic presidential rival Hillary Clinton
- Russian officials reportedly offered Trump the opportunity to partner in real-estate development deals, which he did not participate in.
- Trump allegedly hired sex workers, according to the report, to perform lewd acts referred to as “golden showers” on a bed in a Ritz Carlton hotel presidential suite where President Obama once stayed.
- “Trump’s unorthodox behaviour in Russia over the years,” as the report put it, provided Russians with information that they could potentially use to blackmail him.
The unverified allegations were made by an unnamed former British intelligence official who reached out to the FBI in August about Russia’s alleged attempts to gather information on Trump.
BuzzFeed’s story cites the need to publish the document in its entirety “so that Americans can make up their own minds about allegations about the president-elect that have circulated at the highest levels of the US government.”
Ben Smith, editor-in-chief of BuzzFeed, issued a statement late Tuesday explaining the decision to publish the memos: “As we noted in our story, there is serious reason to doubt the allegations. We have been chasing specific claims in this document for weeks, and will continue to,” Smith said.
“Publishing this document was not an easy or simple call, and people of good will may disagree with our choice. But publishing this dossier reflects how we see the job of reporters in 2017,” he added.
Mother Jones’ David Corn came across the reports and included details about them in an October 2016 story, but he said he did not to publish them because the details could not be confirmed.
Both President Barack Obama and Trump were given classified intelligence briefings about the scandalous claims.
Following the bombshell reports, Trump shot back, denying the allegations.
“FAKE NEWS,” Trump tweeted. “A TOTAL POLITICAL WITCH HUNT.”