Far-right television personality Sean Hannity is a crucial part of Fox News' evening efforts to spin reality in favor of President Donald Trump.
On Wednesday night, that required Hannity to dismiss Lev Parnas, the right hand man of the President's personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani.
Parnas gave an explosive two part interview on MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He's currently under indictment for illegally funneling foreign money into Republican political campaigns.
WIth his lawyer Joseph Bondy by his side, Parnas implicated the President, Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Attorney General William Barr, Giuliani, and Jay Sekulow in the pressure campaign to withhold military aid from Ukraine until its leaders agreed to announce politically beneficial investigations.
Parnas also boasts hundreds of pages of corroborating documents recently released by House Democrats.
So it's no wonder why Hannity, a close personal friend of Trump, would leap to discredit Parnas and the network that aired the jarring interview.
Sean Hannity attacks MSNBC for interviewing Lev Parnas and calls the network "state run TV" https://t.co/kn8W0izFdP— Andrew Lawrence (@Andrew Lawrence) 1579141161.0
"He goes right to state run MSDNC conspiracy channel media...well, people trying to stay out of jail, in my humble opinion will say anything. If you're willing to smear Trump, you're always welcome."
It's worth noting that no reporter has taken Parnas's words for fact, but his statements have boosted calls for the Senate to hear testimony from those named by Parnas to get a clearer picture of just what was happening in Ukraine.
Hannity later claimed again that MSNBC and CNN are "state-run tv" after the second half of Parnas's interview Thursday night.
Sean Hannity says MSNBC and CNN are "both are state run TV" https://t.co/miHU9ZmhxN— Andrew Lawrence (@Andrew Lawrence) 1579227295.0
Of course, the irony of all this is one of Fox News's most devout Republicans accusing MSNBC of being state-run television. Hannity frequently devotes his airtime to conspiracy theories and outright lies designed to paint a flattering portrait of Donald Trump.
It's unclear whose state Hannity believes is running MSNBC or CNN, since the Executive Branch, the Senate, and most of the Supreme Court are on the side of the president Fox News contorts itself to defend.
Fox does the same even outside of Hannity's show, allowing hosts on Fox and Friends and others to let blatant lies go unchallenged.
So taken for granted is Fox's loyalty to Trump that the President rage tweets when Fox doesn't fabricate poll numbers in his favor.
People called Hannity out for the hypocrisy.
Sean Hannity was Michael Cohen's third client and regularly echoes Russian propaganda. We need to be reminded of th… https://t.co/JYpIMlKlnt— Heather Cox Richardson (TDPR) (@Heather Cox Richardson (TDPR)) 1579141444.0
Interesting comment coming from a man owned by POTUS, one of the loudest voices at the actual state-run TV. Project… https://t.co/o7t55W0131— James Morrison (@James Morrison) 1579151027.0
Can someone explain to thumb-head that “state run TV” can’t be on the side that isn’t in power? https://t.co/kqs2cZUxea— bob clendenin (@bob clendenin) 1579143549.0
Honey, that’s some pretty impressive projection even for a Fox News opinion anchor. https://t.co/C603ZPt9Ts— Molly Jong-Fast (@Molly Jong-Fast) 1579142136.0
OK... Interviewing someone WHO HAS EVIDENCE about matters which the President has been impeached over, yet about wh… https://t.co/4FpcatNyOZ— Niko "Trump Knows Parnas" Dismal 🦜 (@Niko "Trump Knows Parnas" Dismal 🦜) 1579217053.0
Hello pot, this is kettle... https://t.co/c1XK8TOwwr— Dr. Hates Kale Frystak 🥃⚜️ (@Dr. Hates Kale Frystak 🥃⚜️) 1579182773.0
Well, he would know. https://t.co/zGeVNowTVr— kristen johnston (@kristen johnston) 1579221981.0
Irony is dead. https://t.co/DI471vCf2y— Dr. Oh-NE-Der Boy (@Dr. Oh-NE-Der Boy) 1579142612.0
Somehow, I don't expect Hannity's detractions to extinguish interest in what Parnas has to say.