The day after Dominion Voting Methods launched its newest revelatory courtroom submitting as a part of its $1.6 billion defamation swimsuit towards Fox, a radio caller had some questions. Calling into Sean Hannity’s radio program Tuesday, David—“a liberal from California,” as Hannity put it—confronted the Fox Information host in regards to the calculation he and a few of his colleagues made behind the scenes within the aftermath of the 2020 election. “You knew the election wasn’t stolen from [Donald] Trump, and also you guys lied about it anyway since you felt you had a superb motive,” the caller mentioned, presumably referencing the best way Fox Information executives and stars privately mocked Trump’s claims of fraud however continued to offer them a platform, Dominion has argued, within the hopes of juicing scores and earnings.
The caller may have been referring to any variety of particulars involving Hannity and Co. that just lately emerged as a part of Dominion’s case. There was the change in Monday’s temporary between Rupert Murdoch and former GOP Home Speaker (and present Fox Corp. board member) Paul Ryan following the January 6 assault on the US Capitol, through which Ryan mentioned he believed “some excessive share of Individuals” thought the election was stolen “as a result of they obtained a food regimen of data telling them the election was stolen from what they imagine have been credible sources”; Murdoch responded to Ryan, “Wake-up name for Hannity, who has been privately disgusted by Trump for weeks, however was scared to lose viewers.” Or maybe the caller was referring to the group chat between Hannity and colleagues Laura Ingraham and Tucker Carlson, through which Carlson mentioned a Fox reporter must be fired for fact-checking Trump’s claims on Twitter, which he claimed was “measurably hurting the corporate.” In fact, Hannity acknowledged none of those accounts on his radio program. As a substitute, as Media Issues reported, he denied accusations of mendacity whereas launching right into a winding rant about what he mentioned he talked about post-election, like “legal guidelines being violated” and “integrity points” that he “simply spelled out.” Hannity advised the caller, “I used to be very, very particular. You already know, you are asking me whether or not or not I talked about different matters, I didn’t. These weren’t arguments that have been being made on this present.”
The Dominion swimsuit just isn’t occurring in a vacuum, and, with the case set to go to trial in April, the confrontation on Hannity’s radio program is probably going simply the tip of the iceberg. Fox—which has claimed that Dominion “cherry-picked quotes stripped of key context” and argued that it’s protected by the First Modification—is seemingly making an attempt to place off partaking with the newest revelations by itself programming for so long as attainable. On Sunday, Fox Information host Howard Kurtz mentioned the community had prohibited him from overlaying the defamation swimsuit. “I imagine I must be overlaying it. It’s a significant media story, given my position right here at Fox. However the firm has determined that as a part of the group being sued, I can’t speak about it or write about it, not less than for now,” mentioned Kurtz, who hosts a weekly present on the media business, including, “I strongly disagree with that call, however as an worker, I’ve to abide by it.”
In the meantime, in keeping with Axios’ Sara Fischer, executives contained in the constructing are additionally having a tough time ignoring the revelations. “I’ve sources inside Fox within the C-Suite stage; they let you know they assume it’s doubtless that they may lose this case, and that’s due to this discrepancy,” she advised CNN following Monday’s submitting. “They could say there was newsworthiness in overlaying what Donald Trump was saying, however there’s a clear distinction in newsworthiness versus peddling and having folks peddling these lies in your present.”