Bullyboy Sean Hannity reacted to his name coming up as a figure in the Trump impeachment inquiry and Ukraine scandal with personal attacks, lies and denying what he was not accused of.
As you may recall, the deposition testimony of ousted Ukraine Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch revealed she was promised that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo or “somebody around him” would consult with Sean Hannity about the smear campaign being waged against her by Trump allies. In other words, smears waged by the Hannity contingent.
Last night, Hannity responded with just the kind of grace and class you’d expect from him – i.e. none. And, predictably, poor widdle Seanie-Pooh, who just happens to be a powerful television and radio host as well as Donald Trump’s Bedtime BFF, played the victim. He frantically waved his hands around and called MSNBC’s John Heilemann “a dumb jackass.” That last smear would certainly engender howls of outrage from thin-skinned Hannity had anyone on another network said the same about him. The guy who recently defended Trump’s fraudulent Hurricane Dorian map now whined about “fake news” from everyone else.
Karoli, at Crooks and Liars (where I am a contributor), has a good summary:
After playing numerous clips from MSNBC, Hannity shook his fist at CNN President Jeff Zucker, declared the whole thing "fake news," and readied another John Solomon smear of Joe Biden to distract his viewers.
"In reality, despite the obsessive fake news reporting by the media mob, I don't know anything about this woman," Hannity insisted. "She was barely mentioned but a few times on this program just in passing, basically, and to this day I haven't talked to anyone from Ukraine that I knew was from Ukraine -- no one!"
He added, "I certainly was not lobbying for her removal."
Sorry, Hannity, but your claim never to have talked to anyone from Ukraine reminds me of the time you pretended that birtherism “never was my issue.”
There are receipts proving you a liar this time, too. From Media Matters:
Hannity has repeatedly hosted Joseph diGenova and Victoria Toensing, lawyers for Ukrainian oligarch Dmitry Firtash.
According to a Media Matters database, diGenova has appeared on Hannity’s show at least 37 times in 2018 and 2019. His partner Toensing has appeared on Hannity’s show at least 20 times during the same period.
Additionally, Hannity has hosted conservative writer John Solomon over 100 times in 2018 and 2019. Solomon, now a Fox News contributor, is also a client of Toensing and diGenova, and he coordinated with personal Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani to inject his Ukraine disinformation into the media.
Not only that, but Media Matters has video of Hannity and diGenova, from March 20, 2019 in which diGenova specifically attacks Yovanovitch and calls for her removal from Ukraine to “answer a slew of questions.”
HANNITY: There’s so much coming that backs up everything we’ve reported.
DIGENOVA: Yes, this is going to all open up finally and we can have a nice second part of it by calling home the United States ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch, for consultations and to answer a slew of questions about her conduct and her assault on the president of the United States.
Watch the behavior that makes Hannity look more guilty below, from the November 5, 2019 Hannity. Underneath is the Media Matters mashup showing diGenova calling for Yovanovitch's removal on the Hannity show.
If Trump is reelected we’ll need a new word for: government by conspiracy theory.
Remember that liberal media since the 1980’s made Trump famous enough to be elected. Protofascism takes a bipartisan effort.
In the mainstream media, the conspiracy theories of Russians/US conservatives must be seen as equal to testimony made under oath to congress.
Some people like myself knew that US democracy was crumbling when the first black president bombed Africa for 8 years. The fact that Trump was even considered as a candidate is evidence that the USA is a failed democracy.
It took the best and brightest US academics and celebrities and the most technologically advanced communication systems to bring us to protofascism.
If we don’t teach new generations critical-thinking they won’t be able to discern the truth, without which there can be no justice.
Passionately whining with faux umbrage that you’ve “never even been to Oklahoma” when you are accused of robbing a bank in Ohio serves to confuse the tunnel visioned and easily misled conservative minds.
Regarding Burisma and the Bidens, Hannity and the Right Wing have deliberately obfuscated the actual facts of the matter. Burisma was indeed a shady company and was linked with corruption in Ukraine – but this was during several years before Hunter Biden was ever asked to join their board. While that corruption was going on, the Ukrainian prosecutor Shokin was noted for his unwillingness to handle it. Shokin was frankly a part of the corruption. At some point late in the Obama presidency and years after the company had committed its various and sundry actions, Burisma contracted with Hunter Biden to become a highly paid member of their board. By pretty much all accounts, Hunter Biden was paid a lot to do practically nothing for them. I’m fairly sure that they thought this appointment would be seen by the Obama presidency as a “good faith” gesture, and that presumably Joe Biden would be influenced by it. Instead, the Obama White House sided with the international community and demanded that the corruption in Ukraine be examined – and part of this involved dumping an obviously corrupt prosecutor who was refusing to investigate companies like Burisma. Biden’s trip to tell the Ukrainians this message was ordered by President Obama, who in turn was working in cooperation with a lot of other countries – essentially telling Ukraine to clean up their act or risk losing their funding. When Biden told the Ukrainians to do this, they tried to laugh him off, as he discussed in the clip Fox keeps playing of him. They figured he’d never do this and figured that he had no power to tell them anything. Biden of course told them to call Obama if they doubted him and gave them a deadline to fire the corrupt prosecutor. The Ukrainians thought twice and backed down, firing Shokin and installing an actual prosecutor.
We should keep in mind that had there been any actual legal malfeasance by Hunter Biden or even Joe Biden with Burisma and the Ukrainians, the actual investigation that was done by the new prosecutor would have uncovered it fairly quickly. The Ukrainians would have been motivated to embarrass Biden if they could for having the temerity to challenge them. But the new prosecutor found instead that there was nothing illegal or inethical in what happened with Burisma and Hunter Biden. He did find that Burisma had a prior history of corruption, but that they were behaving themselves when Biden was on the board. (He noted that the last illegal acts had happened two years before Biden was recruited). In the aftermath of all this, the fired prosecuctor, Shokin, began making noises to any Right Winger who would listen that he was somehow fired for trying to investigate Burisma rather than the truth, which was directly the reverse of his statements. Various angry Right Wingers in the US began to listen to nonsense like Shokin’s, and began trying to foment nonsensical conspiracy theories about Ukraine as a way of distracting from the very real hacking done of the DNC by Wikileaks and their Russian sources. And various gullible (and frankly stupid) Right Wing hosts like Hannity and Glenn Beck fell for these ruses, as did cranks like Rudy Giuliani, and began peddling them in turn to their audiences – who were in turn fairly gullible about conspiracy theories like these. And the most prominent audience these guys have is Mike Pence’s childish spokesman, who was stupid enough to have Giuliani run around Europe trying to find the Fools’ Gold of this stuff. Part of that process involved “getting tough” with Ukraine – meaning that now they would try to withhold aid in the service of the conspiracy theory and on behalf of the criminals who had previously been ousted, like Shokin.
Again, let’s remember – the Obama White House was working to FIGHT corruption, and their instruction to Ukraine was intended to clean out the bad actors. The Pence White House was working to ENCOURAGE corruption, in the hopes that they could blackmail Ukrainian officials into helping them smear the Bidens. It appears that some criminal acts were committed as part of the Pence White House’s dark work here – including the exposed impeachable offenses around that phone call, and other undisclosed fraud committed by the Ukrainians around Giuliani. And let’s note that after those Ukrainians were arrested (in the process of trying to flee the US), at least one has come forward to say he will roll over on the others – which could take the investigation right back into Giuliani if not all the way into the Pence White House. So the criminal behavior was committed by the guys working with the Pence White House, and they’re frantically trying to smear the guys before them who were trying to stamp out the corruption and criminality. That’s while they’re trying in vain to make this about “process” when the House committee hearings are completely constitutional and appropriate (and attended by the very Republicans they say are being left out), or about the identity of a whistleblower (when that information is irrelevant after we’ve already had it corroborated and when it’s obvious their intention is to have that person physically attacked or worse). These guys can sing all day long about their distractions. It will not change the facts.
Finally, regarding the Bidens and Ukraine. There’s frankly nothing illegal or even unethical in Hunter Biden accepting a Board seat on a company. I would agree that we can discuss the MORALITY of accepting a giant paycheck from a company like Burisma, but that’s irrelevant as far as criminality goes. And we’ve seen that this Board seat and paycheck did nothing to save either Burisma or the corrupt prosecutor Shokin from being dealt with. All we have is a possible discussion about whether the son of a Vice President should think before accepting a Board seat and a paycheck. And in the greater scheme of things, that discussion is pretty small potatoes. Certainly the Right Wing has no issues with the relations of White House figureheads getting all kinds of perks, or they would not have allowed any of the Trumps, the Reagans or the Bushes to get away with all the goodies they received.
Substantively his editorial is crap. Unlike his buddy Trump, Hunter Biden and Burisma have undergone at least one thorough investigation (actually, I think more) in Ukraine and no wrongdoing found. If they weren’t sufficient why isn’t Trump sycophant Barr on the case? Ever notice Hannity always cries conspiracy at Hillary, Comey, Brennan, Strzok, McCabe, etc. but Barr can’t come up with squat to indict?
Of course the slight of hand deception Hannity is playing is even if everything he says about Biden’s corruption is true, it doesn’t address Trump’s case. While Hannity waves it all off with Trump’s narrative of being a Boy Scout trying to fight corruption, Hannity fails to address a single fact belying Trump’s fiction. All Hannity can do is smear the accusers and reporters as being part of a “deep state” conspiracy.