Axios Dec 2
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ABC’s Brian Ross suspended over erroneous Flynn report

Ross incorrectly reported when Trump told Flynn to contact the Russians. Photo: Rainmaker Photo/MediaPunch/IPX

ABC News investigative reporter Brian Ross was suspended for four weeks without pay tonight over his incorrect report that Michael Flynn was prepared to testify that Donald Trump told him to contact the Russians during his presidential campaign.

Why it matters: It was a huge error that moved markets and damaged the network's credibility. The report was also passed along by Axios and other news outlets. In a statement, ABC News apologized and said the report "had not been fully vetted through our editorial standards process."

The network later corrected the report to say that Trump gave him that instruction as president-elect — which is a big difference, since there's nothing unusual about newly elected presidents contacting foreign governments.

The full text of ABC's statement:

"We deeply regret and apologize for the serious error we made yesterday. The reporting conveyed by Brian Ross during the special report had not been fully vetted through our editorial standards process. As a result of our continued reporting over the next several hours ultimately we determined the information was wrong and we corrected the mistake on air and online.

"It is vital we get the story right and retain the trust we have built with our audience –- these are our core principles. We fell far short of that yesterday. Effective immediately, Brian Ross will be suspended for four weeks without pay."

Khorri Atkinson 2 hours ago
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China slaps reciprocal tariffs on U.S. imports

China's President Xi Jinping speaks next to President Trump. Photo: Nicolas Asfouri// AFP / Getty Images

China announced plans to impose reciprocal tariffs on $3 billion of imports from the U.S., hours after President Trump ordered levies on a range of Chinese goods.

The details: China's plan includes a 25% tariff on U.S. pork imports as well as 15% tariffs on American steel pipes, fruit and wine, according to Bloomberg.

Haley Britzky 2 hours ago
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Former Playmate alleges Trump tried to pay her after sex

President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence walk into the Diplomat Room.
President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence walk into the Diplomat Room. Photo: Mark Wilson / Getty Images

Former Playboy model Karen McDougal detailed her relationship with President Trump — which he has denied — in an interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper on Thursday night, including the first time she met Melania and how he tried to pay her after the first time they had sex.

The details: The alleged affair took place while he was married to Melania and shortly after his youngest son was born. McDougal said they met while the Apprentice was filming at the Playboy mansion, and began seeing each other "quite frequently." She told Cooper that Trump told her he loved her "all the time," and that there "was a real relationship there."