Fox Nuts Descend Into Epic Meltdown, Raging At Mueller As Russia Probe Inches Closer To Trump
Panic has taken hold of conservatives as the investigation into the Russian election interference inches closer to President Donald Trump and his inner circle, and they appear to be losing their minds.
From Fox News to Breitbart and talk radio, anger at Robert Mueller is burning white-hot on the right-wing media were calls for the special counsel to resign or to be fired have reached a delusional pandemonium.
Fearing that Mueller is close to finding the “smoking gun” that would get Trump impeached, influential conservative media outlets that Trump is known to follow closely have been building an expansive case against Mueller.
Right-wing pundits keep bringing attention to Mueller’s relationship with fired former FBI director James Comey and his hiring of Democrats for his investigative team and complain that Mueller has gone far beyond his mandate of investigating Russian meddling in the election.
In particular, Fox News chief propagandist Sean Hannity and right-wing pundit Jeanine Pirro have escalated their attacks against Mueller in recent weeks, zeroing in on the sale of Uranium One to the Russia state-owned nuclear firm Rosatom.
The deal, which at the time gave Russia ownership of about 20 percent of America’s uranium production capacity, was approved by nine members on the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) in 2010, while President Obama was in office. Mueller was the director of the FBI at the time.
Trump has not directly tied Uranium One to Mueller, but Hannity is desperately trying to drag the special counsel into a made-up scandal.
Hannity has used his prime-time TV show as a platform to try to discredit both the probe into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and the special counsel, calling for Mueller to resign and bringing up bogus “conflicts of interest” in an apparent attempt to undermine the “witch hunt” and save face with one of his biggest fans, President Donald Trump.
A Media Matters analysis found that since the beginning of the investigation in May, Hannity and his guests have repeatedly called for Mueller to recuse himself or be fired from the probe and brought up phony “conflicts of interest” in attempts to discredit him. Hannity has also repeated several other canards in an attempt to dismiss the investigation, often hyping them when the ongoing probe results in the release of damaging reports.
“Robert Mueller, I hope you’re watching, you need to testify under oath,” Fox News anchor Sean Hannity said earlier this month. “Back in 2009, he was the FBI director, this was when the bureau, the FBI so clearly had this information. He has conflicts of interest. There is no way the American people can trust Robert Mueller to investigate anything Russia-related. For him to be fair and impartial is impossible because of his past role in this. He should resign immediately, tonight.”
Many on the right also argue that Mueller’s indictments extend beyond the scope of his investigation because they don’t pertain to Russian collusion.
Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, has been indicted on a range of financial crimes. Little-known campaign adviser George Papadopoulos pleaded guilty to lying to federal investigators about the extent of his contacts with Russian officials, but not to charges related to campaign coordination.
Democrats have beat back at the allegations against Mueller, arguing that his reputation is beyond reproach and that efforts to raise questions about his credibility are smear jobs by those who are fearful over what he might find.
Republican leaders in Congress have also defended Mueller’s integrity.
“Remember, Bob Mueller is a Republican who was appointed by a Republican, who served in the Republican administration … and stayed on until his term ended,” Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Ohio) said earlier this year. “I don’t think many people are saying Bob Mueller is a person who is a biased partisan.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) has said there is no need to pass legislation protecting Mueller from being fired because there is no indication that Trump intends to do so.
“I think the view up here is, let him do his job,” McConnell said.