On Friday afternoon, Fox News accidentally published on their website a pre-written draft meant to be posted when and if President Donald Trump fires former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe.
CNN’s Brian Stetler was first to notice the erroneous posting of the draft, a just-in-case measure employed by many news outlets to be ready in the event of a major death, staffing change or firing.
Someone at Fox News accidentally published the draft of a "McCabe fired" story, even though the firing hasn't happened. Twitterers are starting to share the link, thinking it's real. pic.twitter.com/QZPkLcyFLN
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) March 16, 2018
Shortly after the revelation of the post, Fox News took it down. In a statement to Mediaite, they acknowledged the faux pas.
“FoxNews.com accidentally published on Friday evening a draft version of a news report that was being prepared on standby in the event that Andrew McCabe was fired,” the statement read. “This mistake was the result of a technical error. The article was never surfaced on the website, and it was immediately taken down. We sincerely regret this serious error.”
McCabe, whose pension eligibility officially begins this weekend, was the subject of speculation after reports that the FBI disciplinary office recommended he be terminated earlier in the week. By Friday evening, however, he had not yet been fired.