Lou Dobbs | Media Matters for America

Lou Dobbs

Tags ››› Lou Dobbs
  • Trump keeps channeling Fox’s “coup” nonsense. This could end badly.

    Blog ››› ››› MATT GERTZ


    Melissa Joskow / Media Matters

    Amid declaring a national emergency on the U.S. southern border and playing many rounds of golf at his private club in Florida, President Donald Trump has found time over the past week to repeatedly gorge himself on Fox News programming and then regurgitate the network’s false ravings that senior Justice Department and FBI officials attempted a coup against him in the spring of 2017.

    At issue are claims that Andrew McCabe, the former FBI deputy director and a frequent target of the president, has been making while promoting his forthcoming book. According to McCabe, in the days after Trump fired FBI Director James Comey, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein discussed whether the 25th Amendment to the Constitution might be used to remove Trump from office on the grounds that he is mentally unfit for the job (in a statement, a Rosenstein spokesperson described McCabe’s “recitation of events” as “inaccurate and factually incorrect”).

    The president’s propagandists at Fox have gone into overdrive in response, filling the network’s airwaves with overwrought declarations that Rosenstein and McCabe had been fomenting a coup d’etat.

    This is simply wrong. A coup, by definition, is an extralegal seizure of power. That’s not what McCabe says was discussed. “Removing Trump from office by following the guidelines of the 25th Amendment would no more be a coup than removing him from office through impeachment or, really, than voting for another candidate in 2020,” The Washington Post’s Philip Bump pointed out. “It’s part of the system.” Rosenstein would be far from the first to suggest that the president’s often volatile and bizarre behavior justifies his removal from office. Trying to act on the amendment wouldn’t be a coup (though it seems extremely unlikely that the substantial constitutional hurdles needed to invoke the 25th Amendment would be cleared). But framing it as one can engender sympathy for Trump, rev up his base, and be used to justify drastic actions in response.

    The president, as is his wont, has been eagerly watching Fox’s coverage and tweeting out tidbits to push the network’s false conspiracy theories into the mainstream.

    Notably, on Monday night, the president tweeted a quote from Sean Hannity’s program in which the Fox star and sometime Trump adviser said McCabe had “admitt[ed] to plotting a bureaucratic coup.” “Treason!” the president added. Earlier that day, Trump tweeted Fox contributor Dan Bongino’s false claim on Fox & Friends that McCabe had described a “coup attempt.” The president added, “True!”

    This is all quite dangerous. Trump’s worldview is heavily shaped by the hours of Fox programming he typically watches each day, and he often takes direction from the network’s hosts. Right now, his most loyal supporters are telling him that state security services attempted a coup and demanding that drastic action be taken in response.

    Later in the episode Trump tweeted about, Hannity said that the president’s antagonists had been caught “staging a coup to remove a duly elected president to pursue their own self-serving agenda.” He added that Attorney General William Barr needs to “stand on the Constitution to stop this type of corruption.” Hannity has previously urged Barr to conduct criminal investigations into Rosenstein, McCabe, and a host of other Obama-era officials, including Hillary Clinton.

    Lou Dobbs, another Fox host who also functions as a Trump adviser, likewise accused McCabe of “admitting leading a coup effort against the president of the United States,” adding that his statements “seem to be a confession of treason against the country, this president.”

    Dobbs is calling for a severe response. “My question to you is why is the establishment in Washington, D.C., not screaming for the arrest of Andrew McCabe and for all of his cohorts and the DOJ and the FBI?” he asked last night of Matt Schlapp, a Republican operative whose wife Mercedes is a senior White House aide. “Why the hell isn't the Republican Party standing up and demanding his arrest?”

    Dobbs, Hannity, and others at Fox have been demanding these sorts of authoritarian measures since special counsel Robert Mueller launched his probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election. With the president’s Fox cabinet riding high after successfully championing a partial government shutdown and national emergency declaration in recent months, one can’t rule out the possibility that Trump will listen to this suggestion too.

  • Sean Hannity wants new Attorney General William Barr to prioritize investigating Trump's enemies 

    Hannity's enemies list features a slew of Obama-era officials, including Hillary Clinton

    Blog ››› ››› MATT GERTZ

    Sean Hannity, the Fox News host with the ear of President Donald Trump, has a message for newly confirmed Attorney General William Barr: Investigate the president’s political enemies -- from former leaders of the Justice Department and FBI to Obama administration appointees to former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton -- or suffer the consequences.

    Fox’s leading propagandists spent much of former Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ tenure denouncing him over his refusal to turn their conspiracy theories into federal investigations. Hannity apparently has reason to believe that Barr, who has spoken favorably about the notion of appointing a special counsel to look into the Uranium One pseudoscandal about Clinton, will be more pliable.

    On Thursday night, just hours after the Senate confirmed Barr, Hannity crowed, “My sources telling me tonight things are happening as we speak.” The Fox host went on to detail numerous purported crimes he said had been committed by 10 “deep state actors,” including former FBI Director James Comey, former CIA Director John Brennan, and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.

    “Over the next year with a brand new attorney general, William Barr, this country -- we’ve got to decide,” Hannity concluded. “You want to save the United States? You want to be a constitutional republic? You want equal justice under the law? Do you want a dual justice system, or do you want America to be handed off to your kids and grandkids as a banana republic?”

    Later in the program, Gregg Jarrett, the Fox legal analyst whose role at the network is to explain why the president and his team did not break the law but all of his critics did, claimed that “more than a dozen” Obama-era officials had committed crimes and that Barr “should haul them all in front of a federal grand jury.”

    “What about Hillary? Does she get held accountable?” Hannity asked. “They should reopen the investigation; it was a fraud,” Jarrett responded.

    Hannity has been urging Barr to investigate Trump’s enemies and predicting that he would do so ever since Barr was nominated in December.

    On January 15, the day of Barr’s confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Hannity presented a “road map of corruption for the new attorney general-to-be,” dozens of federal crimes that, according to Jarrett, may have been committed by 10 Obama-era officials.

    The Fox host added that Barr “must also revisit Hillary Clinton's various crimes, like, oh, deleting subpoenaed emails, and deleting your hard drive and washing it with BleachBit and busting up devices and ripping out SIM cards.”

    Over the past month, Hannity and his cronies have maintained a constant drumbeat of calls for Barr to probe these officials. His is not the only program generating such demands; on Thursday night, Fox Business host Lou Dobbs urged Barr to investigate Chief Justice John Roberts because of his purported role in the surveillance of a Trump campaign aide.

    Fox has vast influence over the Trump administration because the president both regularly watches the network’s programming and privately seeks advice from its commentators. Trump’s decision this week to declare a national emergency in order to obtain border wall funding, for example, came after Hannity and Dobbs spent weeks demanding that action. And Sessions’ own relationship with the president was damaged in no small part because Trump kept hearing his Fox allies lashing out at his attorney general.

    Barr is being presented with a choice: He can follow the directives of Hannity and his crew and conduct rigorous investigations into Clinton and other Fox targets, or he can try to weather the storm that they will create if he refuses to do so.

  • Trump is taking his Fox cabinet's advice and declaring a national emergency

    We warned you this would happen. 

    Blog ››› ››› MATT GERTZ


    Melissa Joskow / Media Matters

    President Donald Trump is taking the advice of his Fox cabinet and will declare a national emergency to obtain additional funding for his border wall. The right-wing network’s hosts, several of whom also play key roles as unofficial presidential advisers, have been urging him to take this step for the last month.  

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced during a Thursday afternoon Senate floor speech that Trump intended to both sign the compromise legislation to fund the government -- which includes $1.375 billion in wall funding -- and use a national emergency to obtain more money. The White House subsequently confirmed that plan.

    That’s exactly what Sean Hannity suggested that Trump do on the Fox host's Tuesday night program. Hannity said that he was “not as concerned as some other conservatives if the president signs the bill,” as long as Trump “simultaneously” declared a national emergency. “This is the time. That is a necessity. And the president, I think I know him very well, telegraphed that very thing just today.”

    Hannity, who has a close relationship with the president and frequently talks to him on the phone, had previously denounced the government funding bill and threatened any Republican legislator who supported it. But he changed his tune, perhaps because of a call he reportedly received from the White House aimed at “tamping down criticism on the right.” The result appears to be that Trump will be doing the very thing Hannity said on air he should do.

    Hannity was one of several Fox hosts who had sharply criticized the spending bill for providing insufficient support for the president’s long-sought wall. The president will apparently ameliorate that concern by using the national emergency declaration to try to divert additional funding to wall construction.

    This is the culmination of a month-long struggle between Senate Republican leaders like McConnell and Fox hosts like Hannity and Lou Dobbs. Since Trump first floated the idea of a national emergency declaration in early January, McConnell and his allies have been trying to persuade the president not to go through with it, citing potential legal struggles and the possibility of a congressional resolution disapproving the declaration. Meanwhile, Hannity and Dobbs, whose Fox programs the president watches regularly and whom the president frequently consults for political advice, have been urging him to do it on a nearly nightly basis.

    This is the same dispute we saw in December, as Republican congressional leadership and the president’s Fox allies struggled for the president’s attention over whether he should partially shut down the government. Then, as now, the Fox cabinet triumphed.

    Right-wing infotainers can bend the ear of the president of the United States and drastically shift federal government policy according to their whims. They have this outsized influence because Trump consumes hours of television each day and is desperate to receive constant validation from the people he watches. We've reached a point where Fox is all but running the country.

  • Trump seems poised to take Fox cabinet’s advice and declare national emergency for border wall funding

    Blog ››› ››› MATT GERTZ


    Melissa Joskow / Media Matters

    President Donald Trump is inching toward declaring a national emergency to secure funding for his long-sought wall on the southern border, repeatedly telling reporters late last week that he may take that step if Congress does not reach a border security compromise he approves of before government funding expires on February 15. If Trump does declare a national emergency, he will be prioritizing the advice of his trusted propagandists at Fox News, who have been urging him to do so for the last month, over the counsel of Republican legislators who have been warning him away from the tactic.  

    A national emergency declaration would be the strongest sign yet that the conservative propagandists at Fox are effectively running the federal government. Their programs and private counsel are fueling Trump’s decisions, raising dire questions about the nation’s governance and stability.

    The feedback loop between Trump and Fox played a key role in causing the partial government shutdown that lasted for a record 35 days between December 21 and January 25, as I noted Sunday in a piece for The Daily Beast:

    Trump’s incessant craving for validation from the network’s conservative commentators triggered his initial refusal to sign any legislation funding the government that did not include money for a border wall, and then that need sustained his intransigence over the following weeks. His eventual cave shows the limitations of prioritizing the whims of right-wing infotainers during congressional negotiations. But there is no evidence Trump has learned anything from the crushing defeat, suggesting that he will continue trying to make policy with respect to the wall and other issues, on the basis of whether it pleases Fox hosts.

    Trump first suggested in early January that he might declare a national emergency and reallocate funding appropriated for other purposes, such as military construction or disaster relief, to build the wall. Ever since, some congressional Republicans have objected on the grounds that the executive branch would be seizing legislative power, that the move could set a new precedent for when Democrats win the White House, that it would trigger a long legal struggle, or that it could be stymied by a congressional resolution disapproving the declaration.

    For a few weeks, those Republicans were successful, and the president backed down.

    But Trump is being pulled between them and the Fox advisers begging him to go through with it.  

    For much of his presidency, Trump has devoted hours of each day to watching cable news programs, frequently live-tweeted his favorite Fox shows, and treated the network’s stars like members of his cabinet. Now he is poised to take their advice and declare a national emergency.

    Sean Hannity and Lou Dobbs, Fox hosts whom the president reportedly leaned on for advice about how to manage the shutdown, seem to have played key roles in this drama. The pair of loyal propagandists, who each championed Trump's shutdown, had very different reactions when Trump agreed to sign a three-week continuing resolution without wall funding. Hannity claimed that anyone “thinking President Trump caved today, you don't really know the Donald Trump I know,” while Dobbs said it was a “victory for Nancy Pelosi” and anyone saying otherwise is “try[ing] to escape from reality.” But in the weeks before and after Trump’s decision, both used their programs to urge Trump to declare a national emergency, exhorting their audiences to support him if he did.

    Hannity, who regularly speaks with Trump and has been described by White House aides as the administration’s “shadow” chief of staff, said on his January 7 show, “Without a doubt, this is a national emergency. It's time to build the wall.” The next night he argued, “This is a national emergency. The situation is now dire. And whether or not we secure our border, it does have real life or death consequences.” He added on his January 9 broadcast that Trump had “the full authority and power to declare a national emergency and tackle this head on,” adding, “This is about protecting our homeland.”

    During an often incoherent January 10 softball interview with Hannity, Trump said he “most likely” would declare a national emergency if he “can’t make a deal with Congress.” He also said he had watched Hannity’s show the previous night and praised him for producing “real news,” not “fake news.”  

    Since then, Hannity has called for Trump to declare an emergency to secure wall funding on his January 11, January 15, January 16, January 23, January 24, January 25, January 28, January 29, January 30, and January 31 programs. “Now, the president holds all the cards. He gets no deal, February 15th, I'll give you odds,” Hannity argued on Wednesday night. “I'm 99 percent certain that he will lawfully declare a national emergency or just send down the military and start building the wall with defense funds.”

    Dobbs’ commentary has been even more over-the-top, with the Fox Business host using explicitly authoritarian language in urging Trump to seize more power and crush his enemies.

    “This is the president of the United States,” Dobbs said January 9. “He says a wall should be built; that it's a national emergency. At that point, the nation should rally behind him, Democrats as well as Republicans.”

    “I really believe,” he added the next night, “that the way forward here is for [Trump] to declare a national emergency and simply sweep aside the recalcitrant left in this country. They have -- they have obstructed, resisted, and subverted for far too long.”

    The drumbeat has continued, with Dobbs pushing for a national emergency declaration on January 11, January 14, January 15, January 23, January 24, January 25, January 28, January 29, January 30, January 31, and February 1. “There is only one way forward and that is an honest straightforward declaration of a national emergency, because that's where we are,” Dobbs said on one such broadcast. “This president has no choice but to act, and act I am confident he will.”

    Other Fox News hosts and personalities have called for the president to declare a national emergency on the network’s airwaves, including longtime Trump friend and confidante Jeanine Pirro and Fox & FriendsPete Hegseth and Steve Doocy.  

    There were some moments of dissent on the network, even on the president’s favored programs. Fox & Friends co-host Brian Kilmeade argued that the strategy is flawed because the courts have repeatedly “turned on the president,” while Fox senior judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano flatly warned the program’s audience that declaring a national emergency to get funding for his wall would be unconstitutional. But those moments were rare, and they were quickly washed away with more b-roll of border chaos and warnings about violent undocumented criminals.

    This same battle for the president’s ear between congressional Republicans and Fox hosts eventually ended with December’s partial government shutdown. Several times last year, spending bills that the White House and Congress had agreed to were nearly torpedoed at the last minute when the president heard someone on his television saying that he should oppose the bills and even shut down the government over them because they lacked wall funding. For a while, Republican leaders were able to talk him out of it, until eventually they couldn’t.

    Now it’s happening again.

  • Fox News loves the idea of Howard Schultz running for president

    Hoping that “he splits the leftist vote in the Democrats and puts Donald Trump back in for a second term,” Fox News is ready for the Howard Schultz candidacy

    ››› ››› BOBBY LEWIS

    After former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz announced that he was considering a run for president, hosts and guests on Fox News and its sister network Fox Business have not been shy about voicing their bad faith support for his potential 2020 campaign. While Fox News and Fox Business personalities are excited about Schultz’s “realistic” opposition to Medicare for All, their clear hope is that his candidacy will “help our president tremendously in becoming re-elected.” 

  • Trump’s propagandists go to war with each other after he caves on the shutdown

    Blog ››› ››› MATT GERTZ


    Melissa Joskow

    President Donald Trump’s loyal right-wing media supporters pushed him into triggering the longest partial government shutdown in U.S. history and urged him to stick with it as Americans suffered and his poll numbers sank. When he suddenly reversed course on Friday and decided to reopen the government without receiving funding for his long-promised wall on the U.S. southern border, his propagandists split over the wisdom of the move, exposing fault lines in a group that has been cheering on his every move for years.

    Some longtime Trump fans -- particularly those who have been the loudest advocates for harsh immigration policies, like Lou Dobbs and Ann Coulter -- are turning on the president, denouncing him for caving to congressional Democrats.

    Another group of Trumpian propagandists -- led by those who don’t focus on immigration policy as their top priority, including Sean Hannity and Jeanine Pirro -- continues to stand by him, arguing that he simply needs more time to execute his strategy.

    And a third faction isn’t taking a firm position, either arguing that it is too early to tell if the president caved or saying that he lost but deserves credit for trying.

    Notably, Dobbs and Hannity, who had reportedly advised Trump on his shutdown strategy, have come down on opposite sides. On Friday, Dobbs argued that Trump’s decision was a victory for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and “to deny it is to try to escape from reality.” Hours later, Hannity told his own Fox audience, “Anyone out there, by the way, thinking President Trump caved today, you don't really know the Donald Trump I know. He, right now, holds all the cards.”

    At times the split between the two factions has spilled over into open hostilities, with prominent conservative figures using their platforms to lash out at those on the other side.

    Trump craves validation, and his worldview is shaped by the hours he spends each day tuning in to supportive cable news programs and consulting privately with their hosts. But now the message Trump is receiving is no longer unified, raising questions about how he will respond.

    Video by John Kerr

    Trump lost and “to deny it is to try to escape from reality”

    Ann Coulter

    One of Trump’s earliest and most fervent converts, Coulter is the author of In Trump We Trust: E Pluribus Awesome and Resistance Is Futile! How the Trump-Hating Left Lost Its Collective Mind. Her virulent anti-immigrant commentary helped shape Trump’s policy and her demand that he shut down the government to get funding for the border wall helped make it happen.

    She did not respond well to the news that Trump was reopening the government without obtaining wall funds, tweeting on Friday afternoon:

    She added that Trump “promised something for 18 months, and he lied about it” during an appearance that night on HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher. Trump responded on Sunday, telling The Wall Street Journal, “I hear [Coulter’s] become very hostile. Maybe I didn’t return her phone call or something.”

    Breitbart.com

    The website’s obsessive focus on immigration and its support for Trump during the 2016 election helped fuel his political rise. After news broke that Trump had caved, Breitbart splashed “NO WALL” in bright red type on its front page:

    Matt Drudge

    Drudge’s virulently anti-immigrant website, Drudge Report, also went all in to support Trump during the 2016 election, and his subsequent backing of the president was rewarded with an Oval Office meeting. But like Breitbart.com, Drudge Report responded to news of Trump’s cave with bright red text noting that his deal included “NO WALL FUNDS.”

    Tomi Lahren

    Lahren parlayed Trump sycophancy into a Fox News contributor slot and a Fox Nation show. Here’s how she responded to the news:

    Lou Dobbs

    Dobbs’ Fox Business show is characterized by his xenophobic campaign against immigrants and his frighteningly over-the-top adulation of the president. Those two factors have made his show one of Trump’s favorites and have made Dobbs one of the president’s outside advisers, including on the shutdown. Forced to decide between the two by Trump’s Friday announcement, Dobbs slammed the president, saying that “illegal immigrants are surely pleased” by the result. He later added: "This president said it was going to be conditional -- border security, building that wall -- and he just reversed himself. That's a victory for Nancy Pelosi. It will be perceived as such on every television monitor and screen in the country -- and to deny it is to try to escape from reality, and that we ain't going to do here."

    Minutes after that segment aired, Trump tweeted:

    Trump didn’t “cave”; he “holds all the cards”

    Sean Hannity

    Hannity, who speaks with the president so frequently that White House aides reportedly call him the shadow chief of staff, took the most extreme U-turn to match Trump’s rhetoric. Last Wednesday, he argued that Trump would continue the shutdown “indefinitely.” Two days later, he said that “anyone out there” who is “thinking President Trump caved today, you don't really know the Donald Trump I know,” adding, “He, right now, holds all the cards.”

    Jeanine Pirro

    Pirro -- who has been friends with Trump for decades, has advised him privately, and produces a propagandistic show the president watches religiously -- has both remained loyal to Trump and lashed out at those who do not. On Saturday’s program, while displaying a graphic of critical headlines from right-wing outlets, she claimed, “Instead of giving the president credit for recognizing the damage to this country, he was attacked by virtually everyone.” Pirro added that Trump “did not cave” but simply made “a strategy decision to pick the ground to fight on.” She also criticized Coulter for denouncing Trump.

    Pete Hegseth

    Hegseth is a Fox & Friends Weekend co-host and sometime presidential adviser whom Trump reportedly considered for a cabinet slot.

    Rick Santorum

    Santorum is one of CNN’s paid Trump shills.

     

    Sebastian Gorka

    The former Trump aide and current Fox contributor called Trump's decision to end the shutdown a “master stroke.”

    To say Trump caved, “that's a little early, isn't it?”

    Fox & Friends

    The president’s favorite show kept telling him that he was winning throughout the shutdown, and now it won’t tell him that he’s lost. As the president live-tweeted this morning’s program, co-hosts Brian Kilmeade and Steve Doocy each suggested it was too early to tell whether the president had been defeated. Meanwhile, guest Newt Gingrich went after Coulter, saying that Trump “should not pay any attention” to her:

    Coulter subsequently responded on Twitter, mocking Gingrich for his sycophancy:

    Laura Ingraham

    Ingraham, who was reportedly considered for a White House communications role, acknowledged that the president lost but argued that he should get credit anyway.

  • Fox Business Network has spent months legitimizing toxic conspiracy theorist and Mueller target Jerome Corsi

    Blog ››› ››› TIMOTHY JOHNSON

    Melissa Joskow / Media Matters

    Fox Business Network has given disreputable conspiracy theorist Jerome Corsi a prime-time platform to make bizarre and uncorroborated attacks against special counsel Robert Mueller as Mueller’s team investigates whether Corsi had inside information about the release of emails hacked by Russia during the 2016 presidential election.

    Starting in November 2018, when Corsi's legal troubles worsened, Fox Business has hosted Corsi ten times for softball interviews, giving his wild claims a veneer of legitimacy by allowing him to make them on a mainstream conservative network. (Prior to November, the last Corsi appearance on the channel listed in Nexis was in 2011; during that interview he was ridiculed over his book Where's the Birth Certificate?) Corsi and Fox Business hosts have also used his recent appearances to promote a new book he wrote.

    Corsi is a conspiracy theorist best known for serving as the driving force behind the racist “birther” conspiracy theory that targeted former President Barack Obama. He has also pushed other conspiracy theories, including the “Pizzagate” claim and those about the murder of DNC staffer Seth Rich (even though he knew his claims about Rich were untrue). After working at conspiracy theory outlet WND for years, Corsi became the Washington, D.C., bureau chief for Alex Jones’ Infowars in January 2017. Infowars is best known for pushing the conspiracy theories that the 9/11 terror attacks were an “inside job” and that the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting was a hoax. According to Infowars, Corsi was fired for poor performance in June 2018.

    In September 2018, news broke that Corsi had been subpoenaed to testify before Mueller’s grand jury. According to documents he later released himself, Corsi is under investigation over whether he had prior knowledge that WikiLeaks had hacked emails before they were released during the 2016 presidential election. In November, Corsi revealed that Mueller’s team had offered him a deal to plead guilty to lying to the FBI about his WikiLeaks contacts. Corsi said he would reject the plea agreement, and he has since increasingly litigated his case through conservative media.

    Roger Stone, an associate of Corsi’s, was indicted by the special counsel’s office on January 25 on five counts of making false statements and single counts of obstructing an official proceeding and witness tampering. Corsi, who is referred to as “Person 1” in the indictment, is referenced throughout the charging document, which describes his and Stone’s efforts to work with WikiLeaks.

    Since November, Fox Business has been promoting Corsi’s outlandish public efforts to fight back against Mueller. In December, Corsi filed an ethics complaint against Mueller, and later that month, he filed a lawsuit accusing Mueller and several government agencies of violating his civil rights. On January 21, Corsi added The Washington Post to his lawsuit. Corsi is seeking more than $1 billion in damages. As his suit stands currently, Corsi is alleging that Mueller, the Post, the Department of Justice, the CIA, the FBI, and the National Security Agency are all conspiring together to bankrupt him in order to force him to submit false testimony in the Mueller probe.

    Corsi has appeared during prime time on Fox Business ten times since November 2018, according to a search of Nexis. Nine of the appearances have occurred on Trish Regan Primetime, a major platform that has hosted Vice President Mike Pence. The other appearance was on Lou Dobbs Tonight.

    Corsi has used the appearances, all of which were friendly interviews, as a personal soap box, discussing his claims that he wasn’t involved in the WikiLeaks matter, his ethics complaint and lawsuit against Mueller and subsequent addition of The Washington Post to his lawsuit, the allegation that he was involved in a fraudulent cancer fundraising scheme, his unsubstantiated claim that he is being targeted by the Mueller probe because he believes in Jesus Christ, his unsubstantiated allegation that he is under Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) surveillance, his complaints about Mueller’s team subpoenaing his stepson, his ongoing dispute with his former employer Infowars, and to again proclaim his innocence following Stone's arrest.

    Regan often teases Corsi’s appearances as “exclusives” and Corsi has, in turn, thanked her for giving him such a big platform, saying during the December 14 edition of Trish Regan Primetime, “Your show has been of great assistance. I can't thank you enough.”

    During his appearances, Regan has taken Corsi’s unsubstantiated claims at face value and has effusively praised him, including wishing him luck in his legal travails; calling Corsi “a brave man” who is experiencing “everyone’s worst nightmare”; claiming he was targeted by Mueller because he “dared to fight back”; telling him, “You keep fighting. Dr. Corsi, keep fighting” and claiming, “Dr. Jerome Corsi is fighting back harder than ever”; and saying Corsi has “been through a lot” and has “a really amazing story of what has happened to [him] in all of this.”

    Fox Business has also served as a venue for Corsi to hawk his latest book, with Corsi and hosts encouraging viewers to buy it. During his appearance on Lou Dobbs Tonight, host Lou Dobbs closed the segment by saying, “And again, his e-book is coming out next week. The book's title is Silent No More: How I Became a Political Prisoner of Mueller's Witch Hunt. Now, it's coming out next week as any book on Amazon. You can go to Amazon and preorder it now. We encourage you do so. We recommend it to you highly. It is quite a story.”

    Regan promoted Corsi’s book in eight out of nine of his appearances on her show. An exchange during the December 26 broadcast of Trish Regan Primetime encapsulates how Corsi is using the platform. Prompted by Regan’s suggestion that Corsi is under scrutiny because he “dared to fight back” on his Mueller lawsuit, Corsi went on a rambling diatribe about the suit and his claim that he is under FISA surveillance. Regan then prompted him to promote his book, and he was happy to oblige while assisted by an on-screen graphic:

    Fox Business -- and its sister network Fox News Channel -- previously attempted to legitimize Corsi by hosting him to push his birther conspiracy theory and related book.