It appears that Donald Trump can no longer count on favorable coverage from his favorite network, FOX News, as the network breaks from the Trump campaign on the election results and the possibility of election fraud.
On Monday, Fox News host Neil Cavuto abruptly cut off White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany, over claims about the election being stolen, saying that he could not air “false claims” in “good conscience.”
McEnany started the press conference by telling reporters that she was speaking in a "personal capacity," which seemed like an odd qualification to many listeners, but experts later suggested that this clarification was made as a way of getting around the Hatch Act, which bans political activity from taking place on federal properties like the White House. This is something that the Trump campaign has been criticized for throughout the election.
McEnany said that the election is “not over” and that Republicans had “only begun the process of obtaining an accurate, honest vote count.”
She went on to make various accusations of fraud against the Democratic party, and claim that they were intentionally stealing the election.
Cavuto cut into the broadcast saying “Whoa, whoa, whoa, I just think we have to be very clear. She’s charging that the other side is ‘welcoming fraud and welcoming illegal voting. Unless she has more details to back that up, I can’t in good conscience continue showing you this.”
Fox News cuts off @PressSec as she outlined voter fraud issues.
— Matt Margolis (Gab/MeWe/Heroes: @MattMargolis) (@mattmargolis) November 9, 2020
“I just think we have to be very clear that she’s charging [that] the other side is welcoming fraud and welcoming illegal voting. Unless she has more details to back that up, I can’t in good countenance continue showing you this,” Cavuto said after cutting off the broadcast.
“I want to make sure that maybe they do have something to back that up, but that’s an explosive charge to make that the other side is effectively rigging and cheating. If she does bring proof of that, of course, we’ll take you back,” he added.
Trump campaign legal adviser Jenna Ellis criticized Cavuto’s decision to pull the plug on the press conference, saying that, “The enormity of what’s happening in media cannot be ignored. If an attorney held a press conference and said she has evidence exonerating her client, the press should NOT cut away and substitute its own judgment, claiming no proof. That’s acting as a party in interest, not press.”
Cavuto has been critical of the Trump administration in the past as well.
Earlier this year, he warned his viewers not to take hydroxychloroquine, saying, “I cannot stress that enough. This. Will. Kill. You.”
Not long after making those statements, he interrupted one of Trump’s speeches to fact-check claims that were being made about former President Barack Obama’s record.
In his first public appearance since the election on Tuesday, Trump gave a controversial speech from the White House, which caused many networks to cut their coverage prematurely after he claimed that he would win the election if the “legal” votes were counted. MSNBC, NBC, ABC, CBS, and NPR, decided to cut their coverage of the speech prematurely.
Fox still aired the speech earlier in the week, but in the days since the network has changed its tune, and has followed the other networks in fact-checking claims of election fraud.
MSNBC, NBC, ABC, CBS, NPR all cut off Trump’s broadcast, stopping the spread of his disinformation-filled speech.
Tech is fed up. The media is fed up. America is fed up. https://t.co/zUQbFOKmqF
— Tiffany C. Li (@tiffanycli) November 6, 2020