Fox & Friends gave its script to Scott Pruitt before an interview. Don’t hold your breath waiting for consequences.
Fox News in a statement is shocked that Fox & Friends was caught acting like the wing of the Republican Party
Blog ››› ››› JOHN WHITEHOUSE
Documents obtained by the Sierra Club show Fox & Friends gave its script for an interview with then-EPA chief Scott Pruitt to his office before he went on the show.
Read Maxwell Tani at The Daily Beast for the blow-by-blow on how Fox & Friends catered to Pruitt’s team for two separate interviews. It’s pretty bad! And while it’s not surprising in the least, it is shocking to see it in text.
A spokesperson for Fox gave a statement to Tani saying, “This is not standard practice whatsoever and the matter is being addressed internally with those involved.”
But there is absolutely no reason to trust any internal investigation or disciplinary process at Fox News.
Look no further than the Seth Rich matter. In May of 2017, Fox News -- and Sean Hannity in particular -- published and embraced a conspiracy theory about the murder of the Democratic National Committee staffer. When the story was revealed to be total garbage, Fox News promised an internal investigation into the matter.
There have been, quite literally, no consequences for anyone:
The network has not apologized to the Rich family -- in fact, its lawyers argued in a successful motion to dismiss a lawsuit the family had filed against the network that Fox’s reporting had actually portrayed Seth Rich as a heroic whistleblower.
The reporter who wrote the FoxNews.com story apparently remains a network employee, albeit one who has not published anything on the website since August 2017.
The editor who worked on the story -- which, remember, the retraction acknowledges did not meet network standards -- was subsequently promoted.
Hannity and Doocy have retained their lofty positions. Hannity, in particular, has never apologized for pushing the conspiracy theory, even as his instability and lack of standards triggered an ongoing advertiser exodus.
Gingrich keeps hanging up on CNN reporters who ask him if he will retract his comments on the story.
And Fox itself has gone quiet on the story, refusing to answer Darcy’s regular inquiries about the status of the network’s internal investigation.
The swampy relationship between Fox News and the Trump administration is the news here. People move from one operation to the other. Last week, disclosure forms revealed that Trump’s communications director Bill Shine (who is also a close friend of Hannity) is still being paid millions by Fox’s parent company. Oh and, by the way, Shine was also repeatedly implicated for the culture of sexual misconduct at Fox. Trump also chats directly with Hannity, Jeanine Pirro, Lou Dobbs, Pete Hegseth, and probably more Fox personalities.
The emails between Fox & Friends and Pruitt are a scandal -- not just a scandal about Fox & Friends, but rather about how Fox News uses its news division to cover for the repeated malfeasance of the rest of the organization.
And the mission of the organization has never been more clear. Fox News is the communications wing of the Republican Party.