Instead of smearing the voting machines to undermine American elections, as it did in 2020, Fox News is now smearing our legal, democratic processes.
You’d think that fighting two billion-dollar lawsuits over their dishonest election denialism in 2020 would give Fox News and the Murdochs pause for doing it again this year. But now, those enemies of democracy are simply changing scapegoats.
Whereas in 2020, Fox made false accusations about voting technology businesses, i.e. entities that can sue and claim large money damages, this time around, the Murdoch-funded Enemy Of Democracy network is smearing the democratic systems, themselves, with insinuations and suggestion.
On Thursday night, Jesse Watters was a vision of smeary, smirky, smarminess as he deliberately and repeatedly suggested there was something wrong with the elections in Nevada, Pennsylvania and Arizona without actually coming up with a single incidence of wrongdoing.
As a large graphic blared, “WHAT’S HAPPENING IN NEVADA” and a banner read, ‘NEVADA’S ELECTION PROCESS IS CHAOS,” Watters complained that mail-in ballots and same-day ballots are mixed together “in a pile.” Not that Watters said what’s wrong with that - because there’s nothing he can point to that is wrong with it. But he continued sneering that Nevada gives voters a week to cure their ballots if there’s a problem. Undoubtedly, that’s the process their state law provides for, as Watters undoubtedly knows. But he left that part out of his attack on democracy.
“So, what’s going on here?” Watters “asked.” “Elections used to be decided on Election night. American Idol can handle millions of votes in a commercial break. But it takes Arizona, Nevada a week?” Yes, the guy who spent more than three minutes baselessly sowing doubt about our voting systems also doesn’t think we should take the time to carefully get the results right and make sure the tallies reflect the will of the voters.
“None of it makes sense because they don’t want the system to make sense,” Watters said with seemingly unintended irony. As a new banner read, “DEMOCRATS FLOOD ELECTION WITH MAIL-IN BALLOTS,” Watters lied and said, “The longer some of these races drag out for, the better it is for Democrats. Because they’ve created a system centered around ballots, not votes. It’s not about winning your vote any more, it’s not about persuading you, it’s about flooding the state with as many ballots as possible and getting them filled out Democrat.”
Watters still had not made a single allegation of actual wrongdoing.
Watters then played a clip of President Biden saying that Kamala Harris’ husband, Doug Emhoff, has been traveling the country “making sure that the folks who actually count the votes in these states do it honestly.” Watters dishonestly characterized that as, “Doug Emhoff is in charge of election security? Is this a joke?”
No, it’s a Jesse Watters lie. Watters further lied when he turned that into Emhoff “making sure the right people count the votes.”
The smirking Watters, who thinks it’s funny to “joke” about killing Dr. Anthony Fauci (and was rewarded by the Murdochs with a prime time show just a few weeks later) moved on to suggest John Fetterman only won his Senate seat in Pennsylvania because “over a million people in Pennsylvania voted early.” Following the law, no doubt.
But Watters said accusingly, “You get 50 days before an election to get your ballot in. 50 days. So, Democrats have a month and a half head start to work their ballots.” Um, so do the Republicans, as Watters surely knows.
“Over 20% of all ballots in Pennsylvania came in before Election Day,” Watters continued, suggesting there was something wrong without actually saying he had found something wrong.
Watters moved on to suggest – again without offering a single bit of evidence – that Fetterman only won because he “hid his condition for months, debated a week before the election, showed he couldn’t talk, but by then, it didn’t matter. Fetterman had bagged hundreds of thousands of votes already.”
As if Fetterman’s losing opponent, Dr. Mehmet Oz, hadn’t had the same opportunity to rack up early votes and just the same opportunity to beat Fetterman.
Still without pointing to a single wrongfully cast or counted vote, Watters moved on to smear Arizona’s gubernatorial election, where Katie Hobbs is currently leading Kari Lake in a still-undecided race. “Katie Hobbs didn’t even debate Kari Lake,” Watters accused. With an even more hideous smile, he said that because Hobbs is currently Arizona’s secretary of state, “she knew the game better than anyone.”
Again, not a single real accusation of actual wrongdoing.
The hideous smile stayed on Watters’ face as he “asked” if Arizona's heavy early voting was because “people couldn’t wait to vote for Katie Hobbs, probably the lamest candidate of this election?” He "answered" his question, saying, “No, they just flooded Arizona with ballots. Katie, as the secretary of state, is in charge of running the election where, you know, there happened to be an ink shortage that blew out 20% of polling machines in Maricopa County, on Election Day.”
Still not coming up with any actual proof of wrongdoing, Watters “asked,” “How does the candidate for governor get to be in charge for running the election for governor?”
Probably the same way Republican Brian Kemp did. Not surprisingly, Fox News had no problem when Kemp ran to become Georgia’s governor while remaining in his secretary of state job. Even though he demonstrably worked to suppress minority, i.e. likely Democratic, votes.
“The only reason this race is tight is because Kari Lake is a great candidate,” Watters said. Really? Lake is a former TV news anchor and a former Democrat who voted for Barack Obama. She has no apparent experience in public office. But she’s an election liar who joked about the assault on Paul Pelosi and who announced that she quit her TV job because she didn’t believe her journalism was accurately capturing Arizonans – then three months later announced her candidacy. I guess that's Stalker Watters' idea of greatness.
While I was writing this post, Democratic Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto was declared the winner of Nevada’s Senate race. It means Democrats retain control of the Senate. At the same time, Democrat Cisco Aguilar, defeated Jim Marchant to become the state’s next secretary of state. The New York Times reports:
Mr. Marchant, the Republican nominee, had helped organize a national right-wing slate of candidates under the name “America First.”
With Mr. Marchant’s loss to Mr. Aguilar, all but one of those “America First” candidates were defeated. Only Diego Morales, a Republican in deep-red Indiana, was successful, while candidates in Michigan, Arizona and New Mexico were defeated.
Yes, let’s breathe a sigh of relief and celebrate. But don’t think for one second that the threat to democracy is over.
You can see why I say that below, from the November 10, 2022 Jesse Watters Primetime, via Media Matters.
I’m hoping that we remain very angry, and determined to NEVER stop being aware of the hatred the loons will continue to spew.