What is the “Big Lie”? Is it a former president and his allies claiming widespread voter fraud and a “stolen” election? Or is it a Republican congresswoman calling those lies the “Big Lie”? Who’s to say, suggests one Fox News anchor, whose ostensible job it is to report the news.
During Thursday’s broadcast of America Reports—one of Fox News’ “straight news” programs—anchor John Roberts ended an interview with Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX) by deploying a high-grade bothsidesism to ask him about House Republicans’ push to oust Rep. Liz Cheney. The Wyoming lawmaker is at risk of being forced from her leadership position because she insists on calling out former president Donald Trump’s lies about the 2020 presidential election.
Noting that Cheney survived an attempt to vote her out earlier this year, Roberts pointed out that Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY)—a staunch Trump ally who supported his push to overturn last year’s election—has the inside track to supplant Cheney.
Brady, for his part, attempted to thread the needle and offer up some praise for Cheney, claiming she is a “fierce conservative” who has gained a “great deal of respect” over her “vote of conscience” on impeachment. (Cheney was one of only 10 House Republicans who voted to impeach former President Donald Trump for inciting the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection.)
The Fox anchor then decided to frame Trump’s outright lies about widespread voter fraud as merely a “sharp disagreement” with Cheney, suggesting this GOP feud is an unsettled issue that is still up for debate.
“Trump says the ‘Big Lie’ was the result of the 2020 election. Liz Cheney says, no, the ‘Big Lie’ was suggesting the 2020 election was stolen. Between the two of them, who is right?” Roberts asked the Texas congressman, who is retiring after this term.
“I’ll leave that dispute to them,” Brady said, prompting a chuckle from Roberts.
This was not the first time the Fox anchor has framed Trump’s baseless election claims as nothing more than a difference of opinion between the ex-president and the Liz Cheneys of his own party.
Earlier this week, during an interview with Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY), Roberts brought up Trump’s claim that the “fraudulent” election will now be known as the “Big Lie” before contrasting it with Cheney’s response that the “2020 election was not stolen” and the “Big Lie” was the act of deploying those falsehoods.
“Who of the two of them is right?” Roberts wondered aloud.
After Barrasso didn’t directly answer the question—instead stating that Biden is in the White House and the election was verified—Roberts again asked: “Was the 2020 election stolen or was it fought fairly?”
Fox News viewers may never know.