Top personalities at Fox News on Wednesday baselessly called into question the legitimacy of the presidential election, parroting the dangerous rhetoric from President Donald Trump aimed at portraying the contest as rigged.
The network’s prime time lineup of pro-Trump propagandists spent the evening suggesting the election was potentially rife with corruption and implying Democrats might be stealing the election.
“Tonight every American should be angry, outraged and worried and concerned about what happened in the election and the lead up to the election,” Sean Hannity declared on his program.
Large chunks of Hannity’s show were devoted to pushing the narrative of deteriorating trust in the voting system. The host, who is close with the President, asked his audience, “Do you trust what happened in this election? Do you believe these election results are accurate? Do you believe this was a free and fair election?”
“I have a lot of questions,” Hannity concluded.
Hannity was joined in his efforts to impugn the integrity of the electoral system by his colleagues Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham, two hosts who also have a history of advancing dishonest arguments to support Trump.
Carlson invited guests on his show, including a Trump campaign lawyer, who skewered the electoral process.
Carlson contended the “outcome of our presidential election was seized from the hands of voters” and put in the hands of “clearly corrupted city bureaucrats.” He added that “many Americans will never again accept the results of a presidential election.”
Ingraham, who asserted that there were “many questions” open about the process, asserted there were “unverifiable dumps of votes” infecting the total numbers.
Ingraham bluntly asked at the outset of her show, “Is the fix already in?”
A Fox News spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment asking whether Fox News executives, such as chief executive Suzanne Scott or president Jay Wallace, were OK with the network’s top talent attacking the electoral system.
But the apparent goal of the erroneous and baseless claims appeared aimed at softening the ground for Trump to dispute the official results of the election.
Other guests who appeared on the network on Wednesday also advanced similar arguments to suggest Democrats were stealing the election. Former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich spent several minutes on “Fox & Friends” casting doubt on the legitimacy of the vote and advising Trump to demand Congress open up investigations in several states.
Trump himself has attacked the legitimate vote counting effort, calling it a “fraud” with no basis. The President has claimed he “did win” the election, despite the scores of votes that have yet to be counted.