The conservative Fox News network has scrambled to slam President Joe Biden's response to Russian President Vladimir Putin's recent invasion of Ukraine, the fledgling democratic nation that broke from the U.S.S.R. in 1991.
Most recently, hosts of Fox and Friends criticized an apparent flub from Vice President Kamala Harris that insinuated Ukraine was a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). At a recent DNC gathering, Harris said “The United States stands firmly with the Ukrainian people in defense of the NATO alliance." The White House later clarified her comments in the official transcript to say that "The United States stands firmly with the Ukrainian people [and] in defense of the NATO alliance."
In the Fox and Friends segment, co-host Rachel Campos-Duffy speculated Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy likely wished that former President Donald Trump was still in office.
This prompted backlash from historian Kevin Kruse.
This prompted Campos-Duffy to respond with praise of Trump's handling of Ukraine during his time in the White House.
In her attempt to defend Trump, however, Campos-Duffy inadvertently said he was guilty of a major offense that resulted in his first impeachment back in 2019.
The impeachment inquiry against Trump began when the House launched an investigation into a phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Just days after Trump reportedly directed an appointee of his at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to freeze nearly $400 million in congressionally approved military aid to Ukraine, Trump urged Zelenskyy to open up an investigation into then-candidate Joe Biden and into debunked conspiracies about a Crowdstrike server.
The aid freeze distressed Ukrainian officials, with the House's impeachment report declaring they
"expressed grave concern, deeply worried about the practical impact on their efforts to fight Russian aggression, but also about the public message it sent to the Russian government, which would almost certainly seek to exploit any real or perceived crack in U.S. resolve toward Ukraine."
House impeachment managers argued that Trump was exploited aid already promised to Zelenskyy as a "quid pro quo" for opening an investigation into his political opponents. Meanwhile, Republicans insisted there was no quid pro quo, and that Trump was just keeping a campaign promise to root out corruption.
But according to Campos-Duffy, a "quid pro quo" was exactly what it was and Trump's actions were honorable:
"Trump gave them weapons. He used that leverage to try to get Zelinsky to expose the proven Biden family corruption in Ukraine."
Social media users were quick to pounce on the admission.
The quip led some to take shots at her intelligence.
Campos-Duffy hasn't responded.