Fox News labeled President Joe Biden a “wannabe dictator” who attempted to have “his political rival arrested” during a live broadcast of Donald Trump’s post-arraignment speech.
Fox News was the only major cable news network to carry Trump’s Tuesday evening speech live, with CNN and MSNBC opting to not to air it live.
This is what’s wrong with the media. Shortly before Hannity came on Fox News last night, this ridiculous chyron, which is based on nothing but biased opinion, appeared. It read:
“Wannabe dictator speaks at the White House after having his political rival arrested.”
#1 A Grand… pic.twitter.com/ayibqU1UHV
— Brian Krassenstein (@krassenstein) June 14, 2023
Speaking from a stage at the Trump National Golf Club Bedminster in New Jersey, Trump attempted to downplay the allegations he mishandled classified documents at Mar-a-Lago before trying to shield them from the government when investigators demanded them back.
Trump claimed he was the victim of political “persecution”, baselessly accused Biden of directing efforts to prosecute him and said Biden was “the most corrupt president in the history of the United States”.
“I hadn’t had a chance to go through all the boxes,” Trump told the audience, claiming that the boxes held everything from memorabilia to abandoned items of clothing, and not the hundreds of classified documents he is accused of hoarding. “It’s a long tedious job. Takes a long time, which I was prepared to do, but I have a very busy life. I’ve had a very busy life. They make it more busy, because you’re always fighting.”
“These boxes were containing all types of personal belongings. Many, many things. Shirts and shoes and everything,” he added.
Towards the end of the speech, Fox News viewers were presented with a split screen carrying a separate speech from Biden at the White House.
Below the image, the news chyron read: “wannabe dictator speaks at the White House after having his political rival arrested”.
Fox News ends its 8pm hour w/ the chyron: “wannabe dictator speaks at the White House after having his political rival arrested”
Chyron went away when Hannity took over at 9. pic.twitter.com/EpWpqqzMqH
— Alex Thompson (@AlexThomp) June 14, 2023
The text remained on screen until Sean Hannity came to air at 9pm.
In explaining the decision not to broadcast the speech live, CNN news anchor Jake Tapper told viewers, “frankly [Trump] says a lot of things that are not true and sometimes potentially dangerous.”
Similar comments were made by MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow who said “there is a cost to us as a news organisation to knowingly broadcast untrue things.”
“We are here to bring you the news,” Maddow said. “It hurts our ability to do that if we live broadcast what we fully expect in advance to be a litany of lies and false accusations, no matter who says them.”