Former Republican Sen. Jon Kyl, who served as the second-highest ranking Senate Republican, has been hired by Fox News as a contributor. Kyl also recently joined the lobbying firm of Covington & Burling to advise “companies on a wide range of policies.”
Kyl is the latest in a long line of former Republican politicians and officials that have been hired by the network. Some notable Republicans currently with Fox News include Mike Huckabee, Scott Brown, Al D'Amato, Dana Perino, Herman Cain, John Bolton, and Karl Rove. Former Fox News contributors include Sarah Palin, John Kasich, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, and Elaine Chao.
Fox News is a comfortable landing spot for Kyl, who has frequently appeared on the conservative network in recent years. Fox News has also strongly defended Kyl when he's come under attack. In 2010, the White House denied the Arizona Republican's accusation that President Obama was refusing to “secure the border” in order to force the GOP to support immigration reform. The network's personalities responded by calling Kyl “a man of absolute intellectual integrity” ; someone who “doesn't make stuff up” ; and “a straight shooter.”
Kyl made his debut as a Fox News contributor on the March 6 edition of America's Newsroom. Co-host Martha MacCallum began by stating, “We're joined now by former Arizona Senator Jon Kyl, who is now a Fox News contributor. This is his first appearance in that role, and we welcome you back to the show. Senator, good to see you.” During the segment, Kyl attacked the Obama administration over immigration reform, and suggested that the Obama administration “has no real commitment to enforcing the law” on immigration. At the conclusion of the segment, co-host Bill Hemmer told Kyl, “good to have you on board.”
Covington & Burling announced in a March 6 press release that Kyl is joining its public policy and government affairs practice. According to OpenSecrets.org, Covington & Burling received over $10 million in lobbying income in 2012. While he'll advise clients, Kyl cannot formally lobby congress for two years because of ethics rules.
The firm said that Kyl will be “advising companies on a wide range of policies” and specifically mentioned “tax, health care, defense, national security and intellectual property matters.” Politico additionally reported that Kyl will also advise clients on immigration reform. Fox News did not mention Kyl's lobbying ties during the segment.
Fox News has repeatedly failed to provide adequate disclosure when it comes to the client ties of its contributors and guests. For instance, Fox recently hosted Fox News contributor and former Sen. Al D'amato (R-NY) to attack health care reform without noting his firm has received nearly $1 million lobbying for New York-area hospitals since 2007. Fox also hosted Fox News contributor and former senator Evan Bayh (D-IN) to attack a tax on medical devices included in health care reform legislation without disclosing that Bayh is a partner at a law firm that represents several medical device companies.