Sean Hannity put on a hammy show of sympathy for the parents of murdered border agent Brian Terry when he trotted them out on the Hannity show last night. Terry, you may recall, is the murdered border agent, the American victim of the Fast and Furious scandal Hannity and Fox News have been doing their darnedest to turn into the Watergate of the Obama presidency. I’m sure some, if not most, of Hannity’s sympathy was genuine. But Hannity’s interest in the couple looked almost completely self-serving as he repeatedly and blatantly prodded the grieving parents into attacking President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder.
The parents, appearing in what was called a “Hannity exclusive” just so happened to have launched that same day a foundation “to honor their fallen son and to bring public awareness to this deadly and flawed program.”
What kind of “public awareness” of the program are the parents seeking? The program has already been halted. How much more public awareness of this program could there be? This smacks of bringing “public awareness” to the supposed misdeeds of the Obama administration that Fox and their BFF's in the Republican Party are so obsessed with. I can’t help but wonder whether Hannity had a hand in founding this foundation and/or if he donated a tidy sum of cash to get it going - and perhaps help guide it.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s certainly the prerogative of the parents to set up whatever kind of foundation they want and one can certainly understand their antagonism toward the Obama administration. And my heart goes out to the grieving Kent and Josephine Terry.
It was the way that Hannity used them to promote his political agenda that is so objectionable.
Rather than ask the Terry’s anything about their son’s life or their own, Hannity launched into the first in a series of not-very-subtle attempts to elicit attacks on the Obama administration:
“When you heard that the government provided the weaponry to the cartels and criminals and drug dealers, the very guns that were used to kill your son, what was your reaction?”
The couple didn’t bite, other than to say they were upset.
So Hannity played a clip of AG Holder saying how bad he felt for the parents. “Mr. Terry, your reaction to that,” Hannity said.
Again, the Terry’s didn’t bite.
So Hannity tried again:
"I understand there was a moment when the Attorney General was confronted on whether or not he had contacted you, both of you, about the loss of your son, guns provided by our government and before you even got the apology, I understand that it was leaked to the press because he was kind of embarrassed in that Congressional hearing because nobody as I understood it up to that point had contacted you. Is that true?”
Not true. Mrs. Terry said Obama had called them at the funeral home.
So Hannity pressed on.
“We watched this now go on for 18 months and the president then decides to invoke executive privilege at the 11th hour on the eve of the Attorney General being held in contempt. I have no doubt the White House is watching both of you tonight. What would you like to say to the President and the Attorney General of the United States?”
“I probably couldn’t say it on camera,” Mr. Terry said. “I’d say get their heads out of the butt anyway.” Mrs. Terry said she thought there was “something to hide.” Mr. Terry added, “They’re lying and they’re hiding it. Oh, yeah. Big time.”
Mr. Terry also said that his son “wasn’t even supposed to be out there that night.”
Wasn’t supposed to be out there that night? That suggests some screw up at the ground level, or at least at a level much lower than the Attorney General. But Hannity wasn’t interested. Rather than try to find out where Brian Terry was supposed to be or get more details on what had actually happened, Hannity doubled down on maligning Obama. He played a clip of President Obama saying that neither he nor Holder authorized the Fast and Furious program and it was not clear who had.
“I would imagine as parents of a lost son that you want to know who, then, in fact authorized selling guns to kidnappers, drug dealers and drug cartels – weapons that ultimately were used to kill your son, another agent and involved in other crimes.”
“What do you make of the fact that they’re trying to turn this around, because we have – these guns have ended up in a lot of crime scenes. Your son is lost, and they’re saying this is a fishing expedition. You have any message to the White House on that?”
And then Hannity had the nerve to say, “This is not politics. This is basic human decency in my mind.”
Predictably, in a moment of GOP media synergy, Foxnews.com has a post about this interview called, "Murdered border agent Brian Terry’s parents accuse Obama officials of ‘hiding something.’"
So maybe Roger Ailes had a hand in starting that foundation.
Oh, I’ll bet it was — as much as he was sympathetic to George Zimmerman’s father:
And even that isn’t entirely appropriate, because that’s the host trotting out that the family accepted it.