Laura Ingraham Merrick Garland July 2022

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Fox News runs defense for Trump following revelation of Justice Department investigation

On the evening of July 26, The Washington Post first reported that the Justice Department is interviewing witnesses about former President Donald Trump’s “actions” on January 6 as “part of its criminal probe of efforts to overturn the 2020 election.” As no former president has been charged with a crime, the Justice Department’s investigation represents a significant development in holding Trump accountable for inciting violence.

Consequently, Fox News’ anchors, hosts, and guests stepped into overdrive to dismiss Attorney General Merrick Garland’s investigation and erroneously link the investigation to perceived anti-conservative bias and corruption in the Justice Department.

Here is a list of Fox hosts, anchors, contributors, and frequent guests desperately defending the former president or dismissing the investigation:

  • Laura Ingraham

  • Fox host Laura Ingraham: “It begins to look like a political vendetta to prevent someone for running for office and succeeding and winning the presidency again to millions and millions of Americans.” [Fox News, The Ingraham Angle, 7/26/22]

  • Ingraham: “Now, Biden’s attorney general is doing exactly what they all warned about under Trump — he’s weaponizing the DOJ, despite his denials. … There's no way [Garland] actually believes that, what? President Trump was conspiring to overthrow the government.” [Fox News, The Ingraham Angle, 7/27/22]

  • Mark Levin

  • Fox host Mark Levin: “The criminal prosecution of a former president of the United States -- and the fatal damage that will do to the body politic, and the fatal damage it'll do to polarization in this nation.” [Westwood One, The Mark Levin Show, 7/26/22]

  • Tucker Carlson

  • Fox host Tucker Carlson: “According to Merrick Garland, Donald Trump is still liable for every single one of his supporters' crimes that day. Donald Trump's speech is violence. That's the new rule. Your speech is violence.” [Fox News, Tucker Carlson Tonight, 7/27/22]

  • Jesse Watters

  • Fox host Jesse Watters: “They don't need evidence. Their goal is to scare you into submission. Watch Merrick Garland last night on NBC flirt with arresting Donald Trump right before the next election.” [Fox News, Jesse Watters Primetime, 7/27/22]

  • Katie Pavlich

  • Fox contributor Katie Pavlich: If Garland indicted Trump, “it would look really bad. It would look corrupt. I mean, the Department of Justice and the FBI have been politicized and used as a political weapon against Republicans for years on end now.” [Fox News, Jesse Watters Primetime, 7/26/22]

  • Pavlich: “At the same time, they’re, you know, going after the Trump administration, endless investigations. So, the corruption and the — the partnership between the FBI and the media to push this right before an election and to bury the truth really is the news here in this scandal.” [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 7/27/22]

  • Jonathan Turley

  • Fox contributor Jonathan Turley: “Merrick Garland would be taking a case that is unprecedented, not just against a president, but in terms of the underlying elements being used in this type of action.” [Fox News, America’s Newsroom, 7/27/22]

  • John Roberts

  • Fox anchor John Roberts: “There does seem to be a certain zeal to go after President Trump here by the DOJ.” [Fox News, America Reports, 7/27/22]

  • Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI)

  • Frequent Fox guest Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI): “It’s just an unequal application of justice and that’s an unsustainable state of affairs when the American public can't trust the FBI and our federal law enforcement and the Department of Justice.”  [Fox News, The Faulkner Focus, 7/27/22]