After Donald Trump built a presidential campaign on xenophobia about immigrants, and even demanding President Obama’s citizenship papers, Fox host Megyn Kelly can’t think of any good reason for the media to follow a story in which questions have been raised about whether wife Melania Trump may have been an “illegal” immigrant herself.
As Politico explained, 1995 nude photos of Mrs. Trump, recently published in the New York Post, contradicted her previous claims to have come to the U.S. in 1996, supposedly with the kind of visa that would have precluded her from working here in 1995. Politico notes that this raises questions about her application and citizenship status, even today.
This is just the latest in a string of incidents casting doubt on Melania Trump’s integrity and truthfulness. First, there was her plagiarized speech at the RNC a few weeks ago (which Fox also tried to dismiss as a nothingburger). More recently, her website was taken down in the wake of revelations that he she had falsely claimed to have earned a college degree.
Casting more suspicion on Mrs. Trump’s citizenship process is the fact that the response has raised more questions than it has answered. On Twitter, Melania Trump issued a blanket denial, saying, “Let me set the record straight. I have at all times been in full compliance with the immigration laws of this country. Period.” The Trump campaign has been similarly vague, The Washington Post reported:
This week, Trump campaign spokeswoman Hope Hicks responded to a list of detailed questions of Melania Trump’s immigration status with only one line: “Melania followed the laws and is now a proud United States citizen.”
But never fear, Melania lovers. Megyn Kelly and her Fox pals Mike Huckabee and Howard Kurtz had Mrs. Trump’s back. Not with any facts or evidence, mind you, but with attacks on anyone who might be raising the questions.
On The Kelly File, reporter Trace Gallagher slyly began a report on the matter by saying, “There is still no concrete evidence that Melania Trump has ever misrepresented her immigration status.” Which is really not the question here… yet. But Kelly did not correct the record. Gallagher did note “there are certainly inconsistencies” in Melania’s various accounts of her immigration process.
Kelly sneered that the media “is hot on the trail of the most relevant issues to voters.”
“This Melania story is so totally overblown,” Kurtz agreed. “Who cares?” he asked, about what kind of visa Trump had 20 years ago. Of course, the U.S. government might, for one. Not to mention those who would find it hypocritical and ironic for the guy who has built his political brand partially on xenophobia and a demand for Obama to produce his citizenship papers (promoted repeatedly on Fox) to be married to exactly what Trump has railed against.
Self-described “down-the-middle journalist” Kelly dismissed those who might think it goes to the issue of the character of both the potential first lady and president. Instead, Kelly framed the matter as just “trying to get him for his stance on illegal immigration.”
Kurtz acknowledged that if it can be proven Melania Trump came here illegally, “That would be news.” This, as he and Kelly had just tried to argue that nobody should be bothering to find out.
Then, they got down to the horrible “liberal” media that was investigating the very thing Kurtz agreed might well turn out to be news. “It’s all about some anti-Trump animus in the press,” he accused. As if Fox wouldn’t be all in on an “investigation” if similar questions arose about Bill Clinton.
And it’s funny, Kelly devoted another segment to this “non-issue” last night. Yet there was still no guest with a differing opinion. Instead, she had a Trump-friendly chat with Trump-supporter Mike Huckabee.
Now, Kelly suggested the accusations against Melania were just a case of feminists hating on her because she’s a “traditional” wife and mother:
KELLY: And that actually bothers some people, I would say some feminists on the far left in this country, who don’t—who feel like that somehow undermines the choices other women make.
Not that Kelly offered up any proof that that’s behind the actual, unanswered citizenship questions. But she could safely assume Huckabee would not call her out on it.
Instead, he upped the anti-left deflection:
HUCKABEE: Well, one of the dumbest things about this is that they’re talking about something that happened over 20 years ago, and she was in her 20’s. She’s, as I say, she’s not the candidate. Why don’t we talk about Obama’s college transcripts?
Instead of challenging Huckabee's birther jab, Kelly piled on to the right-wing deflection:
KELLY: Or why don’t we talk about Bill Clinton if we’re going to talk about spouses?
Today, a group filed a public records request to get Melania’s immigration records.
Oh, and while Kelly was whining about this non-news story, over two segments? She never had time to discuss Trump’s lie about having seen a video of money landing in Iran.
Watch the poutrage above, from the August 4 The Kelly File.
Crossposted at Newshounds.us