What’s a Trump toady like Sean Hannity to do when a DOJ inspector general report debunks his “witch hunt” propaganda? Why, demand his fans ignore the report’s major finding and lie about it.
As you probably know, the Department of Justice’s IG report on the origins of Crossfire Hurricane, i.e. the Russia investigation was released yesterday. Although “Attorney General” Bill Barr rushed to discredit it on behalf of Dear Leader Donald Trump, The Washington Post noted the report found that the investigation “was sufficiently predicated and largely confirms previous findings about the origins of the probe by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III.” In other words, as I wrote yesterday, the "witch hunt" accusations were nothing but a right-wing fever dream.
However, the Post also noted that report criticized “officials’ investigative decisions, notably about how they decided to secretly monitor the communications of a Trump campaign aide,” namely Carter Page.
Naturally, that was all Hannity needed to temporarily extract his nose from Trump’s derriere and declare victory. But birther Hannity went the extra mile of anti-American dishonesty on behalf of his Bedtime BFF and told his radio show listeners to “put the conclusion differences aside” in order to claim that “everything, everything we reported, everything we told you was dead-on center accurate.”
That’s a big fat lie. As Media Matters pointed out, the report states, “FBI officials involved in opening the investigation had reason to believe that Russia may have been connected to the Wikileaks disclosures that occurred earlier in July 2016, and were aware of information regarding Russia's efforts to interfere with the 2016 U.S. elections.”
But Hannity has been smearing the Russia investigation as a “witch hunt” or “like the old KGB” for years. In fact, Russia has used Hannity broadcasts in its propaganda. And let’s not forget how Hannity also worked to acquit Russia of the Wikileaks disclosures by framing murdered DNC staffer Seth Rich.
Now, Hannity just shrugged off the truth in favor of a more self-serving and more demagogic lie. Media Matters caught Hannity on his radio show yesterday:
HANNITY: Well, everything we said, everything we reported, everything we told you was dead-on, center accurate. And the mob and the media has missed what is the biggest abuse of power, corruption scandal in the history of the country.
It is -- this report -- putting aside whatever differences and -- for the attorney general and for John Durham to come out like they have -- and I'll get to these statements in a second -- it is all there in black and white. It's all there. Put the conclusion differences aside for a second here.
Of course, Hannity adopted as complete truth Barr’s attack on his own DOJ, his own FBI and his IG in favor of Dear Leader: “The Inspector General’s report now makes clear that the FBI launched an intrusive investigation of a U.S. presidential campaign on the thinnest of suspicions that, in my view, were insufficient to justify the steps taken,” Hannity read enthusiastically.
Regardless, IG Michael Horowitz's report did not prove Hannity right about "everything," it showed the opposite, even if you believe Barr. As Media Matters reported in an excellent roundup of Fox News lies that were just debunked by the report, Hannity has previously declared, “The entire basis of Robert Mueller’s so-called investigation is based and predicated on a lie … The only evidence we do have tonight is that Hillary Clinton bought and paid for a salacious phony document filled with Russian lies to try and influence all of you during that election.” FACT CHECK: The report found the investigation was not based on the so-called Steele dossier.
Also, Fox News contributor Sara Carter told a credulous Hannity that the FBI had placed a spy inside the Trump campaign. FACT CHECK: The report found that no spies were implanted in the Trump campaign.
Not even Barr propped up those Hannity lies.
And those are just the two pieces of debunked Hannity BS I found with a quick look.
Listen to Hannity’s dishonesty below, from the December 9, 2019 The Sean Hannity Show, via Media Matters.
(Hannity image via screen grab)
We’re beyond Fox standard operating procedure of leaving out key facts with data-mining. We’re beyond just exaggerating to spin. We’re beyond whataboutisms, false equivalencies, personal destruction and other smears. We’re into the BIG LIE bigly to sell up as down, black as white. The Mueller Report “exonerated Trump”. The Horowitz Report finds a Deep State coup to overthrow Dear Leader. It’s not just opinion hosts saying this but their newsies as well.
We laughed at Trump retweeting a photoshopped image of himself on Stallone’s body. Read an article yesterday there’s actually an entire school of MAGA art dedicated to shameless images of Dear Leader as a cowboy breaking a bronco, leading tanks into battle, heading the Great Supper, whatever. Hero worship memes. Even Bagdad Bob would blush. Kim Jon Un is envious.
Is there any end to the false ‘realities’? America should be worried.
It appears that the basic Fox News approach to this situation has been to take a public stance of “we were proven right” even though the report categorically does the opposite. Hannity is certainly trying that approach, and trying to pretend that the nonsense he’s been spouting for years with John Solomon and Sara Carter is somehow now proven.
The other part of the approach has been for the angry Right Wingers to simply attack Horowitz and dismiss him because he was part of the Obama White House. Just last week, they were celebrating him and saying that his report would spell certain doom for anyone not on the Far Right. Now they’re saying that it’s really the DURHAM report that will have all the goods. Except that all Durham has is an extended version of the Horowitz report. And he has a criminal referral for the one low level attorney who messed around with his second or third warrant application. There frankly isn’t much else to find.
The Horowitz report is useful as a post-mortem of how the FBI followed its procedures, or in some cases, failed to follow those procedures to the letter. Given that this was a process that went on over two years and saw multiple indictments criminal convictions, it’s natural that there were a few issues along the way. But that doesn’t have anything to do with Hannity’s frantic attempts to wave his hands and distract everyone. We’ll have to see what the Durham report says – I wouldn’t expect to see a massive roundup of the Right Wing’s favorite enemies – more like a few smacks on the wrist and a bit of tut-tutting.
By the way, has Hannity’s clock finally struck yet? He spent the last three years ominously intoning “Tick tock, Tick tock”. Did anything ever come from that clock other than a tiny cuckoo bird?
Sean Hannity is a liar, a fraud, a coward, and a traitor. Never forget, never forgive. Ever.