“GRAHAM SLAM” and “massive criminal conspiracy” — Fox News covers the Horowitz hearing

So, how is the FoxNews.com homepage covering today’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing?

The hearing is being held to question Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz about his newly released report on the Trump/Russia probe. The report found that despite a number of procedural errors and omissions in the process to get Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act approval to monitor Trump campaign aide Carter Page, there was still a legitimate basis to begin the investigation itself.

Fox had been building up hype on this report for years, alleging all manner of conspiracy theories about anti-Trump political bias in the intelligence community and even a vast plot to frame President Donald Trump in the Russian election interference scandal. But the report itself was a big dud for such ambitious hopes. Nonetheless, Attorney General Bill Barr still attacked the FBI and the report’s conclusions on Trump’s behalf.

Early on in the hearing, Fox used the glowing phrase “GRAHAM SLAM” to describe Chairman Sen. Lindsey Graham's (R-SC) attack on the infamous opposition research dossier by former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele, which Trump and others have claimed spurred the entire investigation. (Horowitz’s report says it became a factor only during the FISA process, after the probe itself was already underway based on prior evidence.)

foxnews.com - Screen Shot 2019-12-11 at 10.53.02 AM copy

When ranking member Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) spoke, the main headline became “IN THE CROSSFIRE” — a pun on the FBI probe’s code name “Crossfire Hurricane” — while the subhead drew attention to a key conspiracy theory regularly found on Fox airwaves: “DiFi claims ‘there is no Deep State.’”

foxnews.com - Screen Shot 2019-12-11 at 11.17.21 AM copy 2

And later on, the website quoted Graham in his denunciations of the finding that there was no political bias — seeming to conflate the problems in the FISA warrant process and other issues during the investigation with Horowitz’s finding of a lack of bias in launching the investigation itself.

foxnews.com - Screen Shot 2019-12-11 at 11.53.51 AM copy 2

“GRAHAM SLAM” came up again along with Graham’s allegation of a “massive criminal conspiracy” in the Russia probe.

foxnews.com - Screen Shot 2019-12-11 at 12.40.51 PM copy 2

And at this time of writing, we’re back to the “‘Bias’ question” as the hearing continues.

foxnews.com - Screen Shot 2019-12-11 at 1.18.44 PM copy 2