Fox News has come under fire for questionable graphics and sources before, and the latest example of the network’s fast and loose relationship with facts is receiving considerable backlash online.
A graphic shown during Fox News personality Sean Hannity’s program presents an opinion on Hillary Clinton’s “potential crimes” related to her use of a private email server during her tenure as Secretary of State. The graphic purports that Clinton is likely guilty of two violations under the Espionage Act, including “gross negligence” in mishandling classified documents and “intentionally” mishandling classified documents. (Clinton was never prosecuted and Department of Justice’s Office of the Inspector General’s report found no evidence of political bias and supported the FBI and DOJ’s decision not to prosecute her.)
But this “expert” opinion didn’t come from a legal analyst at all: It came from pro-Trump commentator Gregg Jarrett, himself a Fox employee.
The citation here is just so so good pic.twitter.com/EMZ9vbVAQs
— Andrew Lawrence (@ndrew_lawrence) April 18, 2019
Naturally, this made Fox the subject of considerable derision.
Whenever I prep a legal brief, I ALWAYS cite a lesser Fox contributor, it lends the highest degree of credibility.
— robinmcstay (@robinmcstay) April 18, 2019
Corroborated by the My Pillow Guy & Duck Dynasty Phil!
— Steve Buzzard (@sbuzzard) April 18, 2019
According to some random crank we talked to around the water cooler
— New York City Antifa (@NYCAntifa) April 18, 2019
Like quoting your grandma regarding your handsomeness.
— José Vildósola (@JosVildsola1) April 18, 2019
I wish I lived in the Fox News world where Hillary Clinton is president.
— Jerusalem Cricket (@JerusalemCrickt) April 18, 2019
Jarrett has often defended President Donald Trump over the course of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into whether Trump and his campaign colluded with Russian operatives to subvert the 2016 presidential election. He has called for Clinton’s to be investigated by a grand jury over her email controversy; however, when a grand jury was impaneled by Mueller in the investigation into Russian interference, Jarrett referred to grand juries as an “undemocratic farce.”
— MissAnthrope (@LyssAnthrope) August 5, 2017
Jarrett has taken his vendetta against Clinton even further: He is the author of The Russia Hoax, which alleges that “Hillary Clinton’s deep state collaborators in government” engaged in “nefarious actions” to undermine Trump and bolster Clinton’s candidacy. In 2018, Politifact highlighted several claims Jarrett made in the book––including his suggestion that the collusion investigation was “effectively over”––and highlighted them as false and misleading.