BALTIMORE – Everybody says Sarah Huckabee Sanders starts a new job in a couple of weeks, but everybody’s wrong. She used to be White House press secretary, a job that called on her to be a flack for Donald Trump. Now she’s going to Fox News, a job that will call on her to be a flack for Donald Trump.
What kind of flack was she for President Trump? The best – the lying kind. She’s the one who insisted Trump “certainly didn’t dictate” his son Junior’s statement after that infamous meeting with Russians at Trump Tower. But then the president’s own attorneys admitted that, in fact, “the president dictated” the statement.
Sanders is the one who denied Trump knew anything about the hush money to Stormy Daniels. Do we need to debunk that little myth? Sanders also falsely claimed she “heard from countless members of the FBI that are grateful and thankful” that Trump fired FBI director James Comey. It turned out, the precise opposite was true.
Sanders preposterously said Trump “in no way, shape or form ever encouraged violence.” And never mind more than half a dozen easy-to-find videotapes of Trump rallies where he’s egging on crowds toward physical violence.
She’s also the one who was asked several times if she believed Trump’s charge that reporters are “the enemy of the people.” Sanders would not answer. And, echoing Trump, she’s accused the media of “fake news.”
Of course, she wasn’t referring to Fox News when she said it.
She’ll love it at Fox, which bills itself as a news organization but long ago gave up all pretense at not being in the bag for the president of the United States. Sanders will find lots of kindred spirits there.
There’s Sean Hannity, who goes to Trump rallies where he plays chummy cheerleader for Trump, and then goes on the air and calls himself an unbiased observer. Hannity’s one of the voices who echoed Trump’s cries that Barack Obama was actually born in Africa when there wasn’t an ounce of evidence to back him up.
Well, who needs evidence? Hannity’s the one who told the creepy talk show guy Alex Jones he was doing a great job after Jones claimed the U.S. government was behind the Sept. 11, 2001 attack and said the Sandy Hook massacre was a hoax.
Yeah, Sanders will find lots of friendly faces at Fox.
Tucker Carlson, for example. He thinks Trump’s immigration efforts are swell. He’s declared immigrants will make America “poorer and dirtier,” thus contradicting the entire history of the United States.
Carlson’s also the guy who said white supremacists are “actually not a real problem in America.” He made this remarkable, tone deaf statement three days after the bloodbath in El Paso perpetrated by a white supremacist. But Carlson was only echoing Trump himself.
Yeah, Sanders will fit in just fine it at Fox.
Laura Ingraham’s there. She’s another one who loves the Trump policy on immigration, especially when it comes to separating these weepy immigrant children from their parents. Ingraham’s blithely called this experience much like “summer camps” that resemble “boarding schools.”
And don’t forget Jeanine Pirro, who called for “cleansing” government agencies of people who dare criticize the president. She’s the one who watched the Supreme Court hearings on Brett Kavanaugh and called inquiring Democrats “demon rats.”
Yes, it’s true Fox has some on-air people who play it straight. There’s Chris Wallace, there’s Shepard Smith. But, collectively, and image-wise, the station’s an echo machine for the Trump administration. One feeds off the other. Each sounds like the other.
Sarah Huckabee Sanders is scheduled to start doing her commentating there Sept. 6. She’ll be fine. It’s like she’s not even changing jobs.
Michael Olesker, columnist for the News American, Baltimore Sun, and Baltimore Examiner has spent a quarter of a century writing about the city he loves.He is the author of five previous books, including Michael Olesker’s Baltimore: If You Live Here, You’re Home, Journeys to the Heart of Baltimore, and The Colts’ Baltimore: A City and Its Love Affair in the 1950s, all published by Johns Hopkins Press.