MSNBC's O'Donnell says he should not have reported unverified claim on air about Trump loans

MSNBC host Lawrence O’Donnell said Wednesday he made an "error in judgment" and should not have reported on air Tuesday evening that President Donald Trump's financial records show that some of his loans have Russian co-signers.

O’Donnell, who hosts "The Last Word," tweeted that his reporting on Tuesday night, which cited a single unnamed source close to Deutsche Bank, did not meet "our rigorous verification and standards process."

"Last night I made an error in judgment by reporting an item about the president's finances that didn’t go through our rigorous verification and standards process. I shouldn't have reported it and I was wrong to discuss it on the air," O’Donnell said.

He added he would address the issue on his show on Wednesday night.

On Tuesday night, O’Donnell reported that the unnamed source close to Deutsche Bank revealed to him that loans taken out by Trump were co-signed by "Russian billionaires."

NBC News has not viewed the Deutsche Bank records and has not been able to verify what the source told O'Donnell.

Later in the show, O’Donnell returned to the subject and said the claim was "going to need a lot more verification before it’s a provable fact."

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Deutsche Bank offices raided
Police cars stand in the backyard of Deutsche Bank headquarters during a raid in Frankfurt, Germany, Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Police officers walk in the backyard of Deutsche Bank headquarters during a raid in Frankfurt, Germany, Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)
The blue light of a police car blinks in front of the Deutsche Bank headquarters during a raid in Frankfurt, Germany, Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Police officers walk in the backyard of Deutsche Bank headquarters during a raid in Frankfurt, Germany, Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Police officers walk in the backyard of Deutsche Bank headquarters during a raid in Frankfurt, Germany, Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)
Traffic passes outside the Deutsche Bank AG headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany, on Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018. Deutsche Bank's premises including its headquarters in Frankfurt were being searched by prosecutors on Thursday in a money laundering probe, prosecutors said in a statement. Photographer: Andreas Arnold/Bloomberg via Getty Images
FRANKFURT AM MAIN, GERMANY - NOVEMBER 29: Police cars stand outside the corporate headquarters of Deutsche Bank on November 29, 2018 in Frankfurt, Germany. German law enforcement and tax authorities raided the offices today, reportedly over suspicions of tax evasion and money laundering. (Photo by Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images)
FRANKFURT AM MAIN, GERMANY - NOVEMBER 29: Police cars stand outside the corporate headquarters of Deutsche Bank on November 29, 2018 in Frankfurt, Germany. German law enforcement and tax authorities raided the offices today, reportedly over suspicions of tax evasion and money laundering. (Photo by Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images)
FRANKFURT AM MAIN, GERMANY - NOVEMBER 29: Police cars stand outside the corporate headquarters of Deutsche Bank on November 29, 2018 in Frankfurt, Germany. German law enforcement and tax authorities raided the offices today, reportedly over suspicions of tax evasion and money laundering. (Photo by Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images)
Civilian police investigators enter Deutsche Bank's headquarters in Frankfurt on November 29, 2018. - German prosecutors raided several Deutsche Bank offices in the Frankfurt area on November 29, 2018 over suspicions of money laundering based on revelations from the 2016 'Panama Papers' data leak. (Photo by Boris Roessler / dpa / AFP) / Germany OUT (Photo credit should read BORIS ROESSLER/AFP/Getty Images)
FRANKFURT AM MAIN, GERMANY - NOVEMBER 29: Police officers walk to the corporate headquarters of Deutsche Bank on November 29, 2018 in Frankfurt, Germany. German law enforcement and tax authorities raided the offices today, reportedly over suspicions of tax evasion and money laundering. (Photo by Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images)
A police officer walks outside the headquarters of Deutsche Bank AG in Frankfurt, Germany, on Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018. Deutsche Bank's premises including its headquarters in Frankfurt were being searched by prosecutors on Thursday in a money laundering probe, prosecutors said in a statement. Photographer: Andreas Arnold/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A police officer passes a gate outside the headquarters of Deutsche Bank AG in Frankfurt, Germany, on Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018. Deutsche Bank's premises including its headquarters in Frankfurt were being searched by prosecutors on Thursday in a money laundering probe, prosecutors said in a statement. Photographer: Andreas Arnold/Bloomberg via Getty Images
A police officer passes a gate outside the headquarters of Deutsche Bank AG in Frankfurt, Germany, on Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018. Deutsche Bank's premises including its headquarters in Frankfurt were being searched by prosecutors on Thursday in a money laundering probe, prosecutors said in a statement. Photographer: Andreas Arnold/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Police vehicles are parked in front of Deutsche Bank headquarters as roughly 170 criminal police officers, prosecutors and tax inspectors searched Deutsche Bank offices in and around Frankfurt, Germany, November 29, 2018, on money laundering allegations, the public prosecutor said in a statement. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach
Police walks in front of Deutsche Bank headquarters as roughly 170 criminal police officers, prosecutors and tax inspectors searched Deutsche Bank offices in and around Frankfurt, Germany, November 29, 2018, on money laundering allegations, the public prosecutor said in a statement. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach
Police walks in front of Deutsche Bank headquarters as roughly 170 criminal police officers, prosecutors and tax inspectors searched Deutsche Bank offices in and around Frankfurt, Germany, November 29, 2018, on money laundering allegations, the public prosecutor said in a statement. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach
Police walks in front of Deutsche Bank headquarters as roughly 170 criminal police officers, prosecutors and tax inspectors searched Deutsche Bank offices in and around Frankfurt, Germany, November 29, 2018, on money laundering allegations, the public prosecutor said in a statement. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach
Police walks in front of Deutsche Bank headquarters as roughly 170 criminal police officers, prosecutors and tax inspectors searched Deutsche Bank offices in and around Frankfurt, Germany, November 29, 2018, on money laundering allegations, the public prosecutor said in a statement. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach
Police walks in front of Deutsche Bank headquarters as roughly 170 criminal police officers, prosecutors and tax inspectors searched Deutsche Bank offices in and around Frankfurt, Germany, November 29, 2018, on money laundering allegations, the public prosecutor said in a statement. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach
Police walks in front of Deutsche Bank headquarters as roughly 170 criminal police officers, prosecutors and tax inspectors searched Deutsche Bank offices in and around Frankfurt, Germany, November 29, 2018, on money laundering allegations, the public prosecutor said in a statement. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach
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Responding to O’Donnell's reporting, an attorney for Trump sent a letter on Wednesday to NBC News calling the segment "false and defamatory" and demanding the host "immediately and prominently retract, correct and apologize" for the statements.

The attorney, Charles Harder, added that "the only borrowers under these loans are Trump entities, and Mr. Trump is the only guarantor."

O’Donnell's reporting referred to tax returns and financial records tied to Trump that Deutsche Bank said Tuesday it possessed. The bank's statement was the latest development related to an effort by House Democrats to obtain the president's financial information.

A spokesperson for MSNBC referred questions to O'Donnell's tweet and declined further comment.

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