Now that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has released a memo stating that “Individual 1”, or Donald Trump, has committed a felony, Fox News is going to have a hell of a time reporting on the President of the United States and trying to make him look better.
Fox News has been struggling with this dilemma for a while since the president’s failures, behavior, and unpresidential influence have become too obvious and insane to ignore. We’ve started to see this play out with the way that Fox News host Shepard Smith has become more outspoken than ever about Trump’s mistakes, and he’s actually gotten into fights with his colleagues on air because of it.
One notable moment was when Trump-loving suspect Cesar Sayoc mailed bombs to several Democrats and Trump critics, and Smith got testy with fellow Fox host Chris Wallace because he wouldn’t hold Trump accountable during a report on it.
In speaking about the heated political environment thanks to Trump’s violent, hateful rhetoric, Smith grew upset with Wallace as the host tried to defend Trump and state that the president should not be blamed for the bomber’s actions. Noting that the suspect has specifically mailed bombs to those who Trump has attacked, Smith said:
You just can’t ignore the politics of all this even if you wanted to.”
Wallace continued to defend the president, bringing up the Bernie Sanders supporter who opened gunfire at a 2017 congressional baseball practice and shot at Republicans. Wallace continued to say that the suspect was a “twisted person” and that there were plenty of Trump supporters who were not mailing bombs. Smith continued to get more annoyed, stating that Trump’s rhetoric causes crazy people to get “empowered.” Wallace tried to dismiss him:
What difference does it make, Shep? It’s a twisted individual and to hold President Trump responsible––”
Smith explained exactly why this is a big deal:
The rhetoric from the podium, the ‘CNN sucks’ chants, the ‘lock her up’ chants, it doesn’t bring unity.
To ignore the elephant in the room is just, you know, it’s a fool’s folly.”
When Wallace continued to scold Smith for holding Trump accountable, Smith said:
No one did that, though, Chris, and don’t say I did. All I said what when the rhetoric gets loud, the crazies come out sometime.”
Wallace suggested that linking Trump to this incident (and others like it) was “dangerous” and Smith had the perfect response. He said:
History will decide what the rhetoric has done in this society.”
Having two Fox hosts argue on-air isn’t something you see every day, but it’s nice to know that at least some conservatives are taking Trump’s cult-like following seriously. You can watch the segment below:
Now that the stakes are higher than ever for Trump in Mueller’s investigation, you can expect to see more on-air showdowns on Fox.
Featured image via screen capture