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Secession-Sympathizing Hannity Attacks Obama's Patriotism, Suggests He Should Be Investigated By DHS

Reported by Ellen - April 18, 2009 -

One night after Sean Hannity enthusiastically endorsed Gov. Rick Perry's threat of secession, Hannity, without a moment of irony, was viciously maligning President Barack Obama's patriotism, even going so far as to suggest Obama should be investigated by the Department of Homeland Security. Hannity's chief gripe was that Obama didn't show enough love for his country. But that didn't stop Patriot Policeman Hannity from spewing a non-stop stream of hatred toward his president, his president's administration, his country's policies, and his fellow citizens who are liberal, all the while accusing THEM of being angry. In fact, it was hard to find a good word for his country in the entire 8:45 opening segment of last night's (4/17/09) edition of Hannity. With video.

Hannity started by accusing Obama of criticizing America too much. OK, fair enough, if that's how you see it, even if it is more than a little hypocritical coming from a guy who, just 24 hours earlier, vigorously defended a governor who threatened to secede. But Hannity's own comments were not just criticism, not just dissent, but blatant antipathy. Hannity complained about Obama's “very disastrous agenda for America,” said “he blames America,” and referred to administration officials as “his liberal henchmen.” Then, in a moment of spectacular irony, he decried the “every angry breath” of the left. “Look at how they used patriotism to justify their own hatred!” Classic case of projection or what?

The “example” of hatred that Hannity showed was a clip of (presumably) then- Senator Hillary Clinton angrily saying, “Since when has it been part of American patriotism to keep our mouths shut and not raise questions about what our government is doing? That has always been the tradition of America.” Where's the hate? The only one I saw acting hateful was “Great American” Hannity.

After Hannity's introductory remarks, RNC chairman Michael Steele joined the discussion. “You always acknowledge great Americans, Sean... You're one this week,” Steele told him.

But Hannity had only begun his malevolence. First, he complained about Obama shaking hands with America-hating Venezuela President Hugo Chavez. Hannity said, “I'm lookin' at Barack Obama and there's a lot he obviously doesn't like about this country.”

Well, isn't that ironic? Let's look at some of the people Hannity doesn't just shake hands with but warmly welcomes to his show again and again. There's Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson, the “patriot” who said, “I think we all agree that Barack Obama was elected by, mostly by black racists and white guilty people. Most black Americans, 96 percent of them, are racists.” Did Hannity shun Peterson after that? No sir-ree. Peterson was back on one of Hannity's Great American Panels two months later. Ann Coulter is another regular guest. She's showed her love for America by maligning 9/11 widows, and “joking” that she wished Timothy McVeigh had bombed The New York Times, for example. Coulter is also a two-time voter-fraud suspect. How much more un-American can you get than someone who votes fraudulently? Yet Coulter not only regularly gets a friendly reception on Hannity's show, I have yet to see the “Great American” even mention the voter-fraud allegations against her.

“Is there anything that (Obama) likes about this country?” Our uber-patriot policeman asked.

“That's the question to end the week,” Steele replied.

“The Dixie Chicks did this once,” Hannity said (and we know how un-American THEY are!). “Obama does this daily now, apologizing for this country... I'm getting a little sick and tired of it, Michael.”

Steele said that what he's seen from Obama is “appeasement through apology... We need to continue to stand firm as a nation.”

So this is standing firm? Apparently, it's OK to support secession, say the most vicious, vile attacks on your president (though the worst was yet to come) and your country's policies on a national news network that's also seen internationally, but if a president suggests we're not perfect while visiting abroad, shakes hands with the wrong person, he hates his country and undermines our national security. This goes beyond hypocrisy and into Orwellian territory.

The America-bashing continued. “Talk about arrogance!” Steele said about Department of Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano. That was a launch pad for a new attack, this time based on the DHS report issued earlier in the week about the threat of right-wing extremism. As Media Matters has noted, FOX News hosts and contributors have been shrieking all week that the Obama administration, out of political opportunism, is targeting as terrorists conservatives, veterans and anyone who dissents. This hissy fit has been thrown on at least three different FOX News shows, including Hannity, and on FOX Business even after FOX News' own Catherine Herridge and Shepard Smith revealed that DHS had previously issued a similar report on left-wing extremism and that both assessments had been commissioned by the Bush administration who had been sounding the alarm about the potential for right-wing extremism. Herridge also noted that military veterans were often vulnerable and sought out by these groups.

None of that information was given to the “we report, you decide” network's viewers of last night's Hannity. In fact, “patriotic” Hannity outright lied (or else was stunningly ignorant) about the purpose and meaning of the report. Rather than investigate whether there's any extremism threatening the country he professes to love so much, he used the report as fuel for more inflammatory rhetoric.

Steele was similarly misinformed and misinforming. He accused Obama of “segment(ing) out conservatives in this country... and labeling them as terrorists. And then! To call into question the service of the men and women who are right now standing on that wall, defending our freedom and linking them to terrorism.” He complained that it was “embarrassing” that Obama and Napolitano had only half-heartedly apologized to Americans while offering “full-throated apologies to the rest of the world.” Did Steele think the country was looking better after this round of diatribes?

Hannity started counting off more of his manufactured indictments. “If you believe we should obey the laws in immigration, if you believe... the Second Amendment guarantees the right to keep and bear arms, if you're pro-life, you're viewed as a potential extremist.”

Hannity ought to know something about extremists. Besides throwing his support for secession, check out the Neo-Nazi Hannity once hung around with. This guy makes Coulter and Peterson look like moderates. Maybe that's why Hannity's so worried about DHS. Maybe he figured that the best way to distract from his own extremist history was to accuse Obama of being one. Showing a little more “love” for his country, Hannity suggested Obama should be investigated by Homeland Security: “You can start your career in the home of an unrepentant terrorist and hang out with a guy named Jeremiah Wright," Hannity began railing. "if anyone hung out with radicals, that need to be investigated by Homeland Security -- are they keeping an eye on Bernardine Dohrn and Bill Ayers? Because that's who I'd be keeping an eye on.” It was pretty clear that Hannity was implying Obama should be monitored, too.

Steele responded with the dubious and unsupported claim that he and the others who had attended a pro-life event the night before were being watched by DHS. “They've got their eye on the 3,000 Americans who assembled in Indiana last night... Sarah Palin and myself and 3,000 other Americans who are concerned about the life issue were gathered there. And I'm sure there was somebody in the room with a notepad and a camera taking snapshots and writing down names.” As Oliver Willis blogged: “Black helicopter watch!” It would be funny if it weren't so vicious and potentially toxic.

Hannity crowed at the beginning of the segment that the tea party protests represented “the return of American outrage” and in lockstep, FOX News gave the video the same name. Well, you're damn right about that, fellas. I'm outraged by your lying, hypocritical demagoguery that allows a cable news host to support secession one night and pose as “Captain Patriot” the next.

Please consider emailing secession-supporter Hannity at [email protected] and letting him know just what kind of patriot you think he really is. I already have.