If the president spends Sunday rage-tweeting about someone, you can be sure that Fox & Friends will follow suit.
Like clockwork, on Monday, co-host Brian Kilmeade and the rest of the Friends downplayed the ongoing Russia investigation and called House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) “the sleaziest member of Congress” and “a conspiracy theorist.”
The segment followed Trump’s Sunday tirade in response to Schiff telling NBC’s Meet the Press that several reported encounters involving Trump’s campaign team may count as “corrupt coordination” or “corrupt combination.” He specifically named the infamous June 2016 Trump Tower meeting, any efforts by Trump associates to obtain a real estate deal in Moscow, and former security advisor Michael Flynn’s conversations with the Russian ambassador.
Democrats, Schiff said, have an obligation “to make sure that the president of the United States is working in the national interest, that he is not motivated by some pecuniary interest, or fear of compromise or actual compromise.”
When Kilmeade introduced the subject on Monday morning, he questioned Schiff’s assertion that prior business decisions may affect his Trump’s actions as president.
“Since when?” Kilmeade asked. “This is not Benghazi or Whitewater. Those are incidents that they wanted to investigate. They’re having just a wide swath look at a 50-year business career. How is that acceptable?”
Fox News contributor Dan Bongino continued the Monday morning rant for Fox & Friends, adding: “Well, it’s acceptable to Adam Schiff because he is the sleaziest member of Congress. He’s a discredited, third-rate conspiracy theorist who has absolutely zero credibility, and the difference between the investigations under President Obama is Benghazi had evidence. There were four body bags. The IRS actually admitted to targeting citizens. The targeting of [former Fox News correspondent] James Rosen and others actually happened, we have the legal documents. Adam Schiff is inventing crimes. He has no evidence of collusion.”
Kilmeade added: “Not acceptable.”
Bongino continued: “He’s making this up because he’s sleazy, that’s what Adam Schiff does.”
The Friends’ thoughts echoed those of the president’s, who tweeted Sunday that Schiff’s committee had found “zero Russian collusion” and that “he is going to be looking at every aspect of my life, both financial and personal, even though there is no reason to be doing so.” The president added: “Never happened before! Unlimited Presidential Harassment.”
And the talking point that the Trump investigations are uniquely personal and unrelated to his presidency made its way around Fox News over the weekend.
“During previous investigations, you have been investigated for Benghazi or IRS scandals or Fast and Furious scandal,” Fox contributor and frequent Trump booster Mollie Hemingway said Sunday on MediaBuzz. “The thing that makes those a little different, and I’m a huge fan of congressional oversight for whatever they want to do it for, is that those were actually investigating administration issues.”
“The Bill Clinton administration might disagree a little bit about that,” countered liberal panelist Mo Elleithee, noting that the Whitewater probe was about a decades-old real-estate investment.