June 16, 2017

Mike Huckabee threw an inflammatory hissy fit for his pals at Fox News in order to deflect and distract from Donald Trump’s unhinged and suspicious behvavior the Russia investigation.

Huckabee visited Fox’s America’s Newsroom show this morning after a round of bat**** tweets from Donald Trump attacked the Russia investigation and reporting that he is being investigated for obstruction of justice.

Huckabee did not dispute a single fact in any news report. Instead, he hammily threw up a smokescreen about the reporting with broad attacks.

HUCKABEE: Look, the reliability of the mainstream press, particularly The New York Times and The Washington Compost, as I like to call it, is somewhat between a Ouija board and Tokyo Rose. That’s how reliable these anonymous sources are. And that’s what we have to start questioning: Who are these sources? If you can’t name ‘em, maybe you shouldn’t publish the story because you get embarrassed time after time, caught with your pants around your ankles, when it turns out that the stuff that you’re breathlessly putting on the front page is absolutely untrue. And most of it has been.

Instead of challenging that statement (most of the reporting errors I could find were minor and it’s Trump who has been distorting them and doing the lying), anchor Shannon Bream helped validate it.

BREAM: Well and we’ve heard that from former FBI Director Comey when he was testifying. He said, “So many of these stories that were out were completely false, but it’s not my job to go out and be correcting all these things that were said.”

Bream kinda, sorta suggested that The Washington Post’s reporting on obstruction of justice was credible and accurate but in the most timid manner. Then she immediately pivoted to make the story about leaks:

BREAM: But here’s what we know. Just a couple days ago, The Washington Post cited five sources, five, that they say told them that the president is now under investigation by Mueller for obstruction of justice. That’s five people. Now a spokesperson for Mueller’s office says, “We put very stringent controls in place and will deal severely with people who leak,” and yet it is still happening.

Huckabee, however, wanted to focus his deflection efforts on smearing the media:

HUCKABEE: Well whoever’s still leaking this, if it’s an inside government person, they’ve committed a felony, and they should go to prison for a very long time. I don’t think that’s where it’s coming from. I think a lot of this stuff they’re just pulling out of the thin, blue air. Or the people are just calling up and saying, “This is true.” You can fill Jets Stadium with people who will be anonymous sources, but it doesn’t mean that there’s any veracity to their claims.

Ironically, Huckabee began to complain about the lack of verification in today’s journalism:

HUCKABEE: And we’ve lost the art of journalism in America where there is no checking of facts and getting it verified repeatedly by many, many sources that are willing to go on the record. And the result is I don’t blame Donald Trump for being angry. I want the entire country to be upset with this kind of shoddy reporting because it’s frankly disruptive to the work of our republic.

Gee, where was Huckabee when Fox helped Trump promote his bogus birtherism on Fox News, without any significant challenge? Oh, that’s right, “fact-loving” Huckabee defended it. Maybe because he, too, was a birther dog whistler. And where has Huckabee been as colleague Sean Hannity has shamelessly smeared a murdered DNC staffer even after Fox News has repudiated the conspiracy theory? Or how about Judge Napolitano’s baseless claim about the Brits spying on Trump, also disputed by Fox, that started an international incident?

Oh, that’s right, those untruths were designed to make Trump look good. Bream seemed to have forgotten all about those incidents, too.

But Huckabee wasn’t done. Perhaps emboldened by a lack of challenge to his Trump-friendly theatrics, he ratcheted them up.

HUCKABEE: Everybody talks about Russia and fake news. How do we know this doesn’t come from Russian fake news sources? I want to go back to something I’ve said for years. People who know don’t talk and people who talk don’t know. That’s a maxim of politics. When I see people who are telling me something that happens, I feel like that if they’re talking, they don’t really know, and if they don’t really know, they’re not talking.

[…] These [sources] are people who are making this stuff up to make Donald Trump look bad because I’m convinced there is an attempt to overthrow, and I use that word purposely, overthrow this president, and that is anarchy.

Bream offered no challenge to that inflammatory accusation either. Instead, she said they were out of time. But not before she and Huckabee shared a friendly chuckle over his recent tweet saying Mueller wanted to talk to him:

Watch Bream act as though she thinks it’s a news anchor’s job to give a friendly, uncritical platform to Republican mouthpieces below, from the June 16, 2017 America’s Newsroom (some transcript excerpts via Media Matters).

Originally published at Newshounds.us

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