The story of Donald Trump’s alleged affair with Stormy Daniels — and hush payments from his former lawyer and fixer, Michael Cohen — was published by the Wall Street Journal in January 2018. Soon after, CNN reported that Fox News had the story before the 2016 election but never ran it. Now, the New Yorker’s Jane Mayer reports the decision was made because an executive said Rupert Murdoch wanted Trump to “win.”
According to the New Yorker, former FoxNews.com reporter Diana Falzone “obtained proof” of Trump’s alleged 2006 sexual relationship with Stormy Daniels toward the end of presidential campaign. Falzone had reportedly confirmed the affair with Daniels’s manager and ex-husband, acquired emails between Daniels’s attorney and Cohen about a settlement and non-disclosure agreement, and even seen the contract.
But the story never ran. Per the New Yorker:
After getting one noncommittal answer after another from her editors, Falzone at last heard from [Ken] LaCorte, who was then the head of FoxNews.com. Falzone told colleagues that LaCorte said to her, “Good reporting, kiddo. But Rupert wants Donald Trump to win. So just let it go.” LaCorte denies telling Falzone this, but one of Falzone’s colleagues confirms having heard her account at the time.
The New Yorker further states:
Despite the discouragement, Falzone kept investigating, and discovered that the National Enquirer, in partnership with Trump, had made a “catch and kill” deal with Daniels — buying the exclusive rights to her story in order to bury it. Falzone pitched this story to Fox, too, but it went nowhere.
In January 2017, Falzone was demoted “without explanation.” She subsequently sued the network that May, and her attorney confirmed to the New Yorker that a settlement had been reached. Mayer reports Falzone signed an NDA.