JUST IN: CNN responds to blackmail allegations over viral Trump meme


Last Wednesday, Reddit user “HanA**holeSolo'” reportedly first shared an image of Trump attacking a wrestler, with the CNN logo across the face of the beaten wrestler.

The image was then edited into a video and tweeted out by President Trump on Sunday. It’s become Trump’s most retweeted post ever.

The Reddit user reportedly took credit for inspiring the president’s tweet, but then later apologized and deleted his previous posts, after CNN identified the man.

In his apology, he stated:

“First of all, I would like to apologize to the members of the reddit community for getting this site and this sub embroiled in a controversy that should never have happened. I would also like to apologize for the posts made that were racist, bigoted, and anti-semitic. I am in no way this kind of person, I love and accept people of all walks of life and have done so for my entire life. I am not the person that the media portrays me to be in real life, I was trolling and posting things to get a reaction from the subs on reddit and never meant any of the hateful things I said in those posts. I would never support any kind of violence or actions against others simply for what they believe in, their religion, or the lifestyle they choose to have. Nor would I carry out any violence against anyone based upon that or support anyone who did.”

CNN said Tuesday that they would not publish his name “because he is a private citizen who has issued an extensive statement of apology, showed his remorse, and said he is not going to repeat this ugly behavior on social media again.”

However, a threat was left hanging open, as the network stated, “CNN reserves the right to publish his identity should any of that change.”

Donald Trump, Jr. has gone after CNN for blackmailing the Reddit user in a storm of Twitter posts:

CNN has denied they blackmailed the Reddit user, and claims he is an adult and not a 15-year-old boy.

In a statement to The HillCNN reportedly said, “CNN decided not to publish the name of the Reddit user out of concern for his safety. Any assertion that the network blackmailed or coerced him is false. The user, who is an adult male, not a 15-year-old boy, apologized and deleted his account before ever speaking with our reporter.”

“CNN never made any deal, of any kind, with the user. In fact, CNN included its decision to withhold the user’s identity in an effort to be completely transparent that there was no deal,” the CNN spokesperson told The Hill.

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