Fox News is still the major media bastion of Donald Trump support. Lately, however, the network has angered the president’s most ardent followers. Fox famously called Arizona for Joe Biden before any other network and eventually went along with the others in calling the presidency for him, too. The network’s opinion hosts—Hannity, Carlson, Ingraham—are as Trump-sympathetic as ever, but some of the organization’s other anchors have called the president’s legal challenges frivolous and questioned where exactly Trump might find the votes he needs to pull ahead.
Fox News’ Leland Vittert spars with the Trump campaign’s Erin Perrine: pic.twitter.com/K42pPreEQ9
— Alex Salvi (@alexsalvinews) November 14, 2020
The irritated reactions to Leland Vittert’s segment with Erine Perrine say it all. Countless people on social media called him a hack who should be working at CNN, while more prominent Trump sycophants like former White House adviser Seb Gorka openly wonder: what’s happening to Fox News?
It still dishes out Trump love, but it’s not wall-to-wall pro-Trump anymore, which predictably pisses off Trump supporters. Faced with the actuality of losing, they’re tired of mainstream media writing off the president’s reelection chances that were dashed two weeks ago. However, Trump’s desperation heave (and his supporters’ refusal to accept reality) has allowed other right wing media outlets to fill the void and tell the president and his followers exactly what they want to hear.
Newsmax, which has become one of the most reliably Trump-favorable media organizations around, is one of those outlets. It has refused to call the election for Biden, and even featured Turning Point USA’s Benny Johnson doing his best Tucker Carlson impersonation to explain. Johnson made his bones as a conservative ragtag social media personality, which roughly translates to making terrible video content and even worse memes. Here, he copies Carlson’s cadence and even facial expressions while delivering a dollar store diatribe about why Newsmax won’t coddle its viewers like other media companies do.
Newsmax doesn’t have a decision desk, so no, they don’t “call” elections. https://t.co/ebhdlYpyWL
— Parker Molloy (@ParkerMolloy) November 15, 2020
What could make former Fox viewers feel more at home than a dumber and even less authentic version of one of their favorite anchors? How about One America News, one of the president’s favorite servile media outlets. When Trump was doing daily coronavirus press briefings at the White House (remember those??) he made sure to call on OAN regularly. Naturally, they’ve returned the favor, peddling his election fraud narratives and still giving him a solid chance to win. This is OAN’s electoral map as of Monday morning, almost two weeks after Election Day:
Meanwhile on OAN… pic.twitter.com/uw3yWzl0DB
— Andrew Feinberg (@AndrewFeinberg) November 16, 2020
Notably, OAN has called North Carolina for Trump with the president leading by roughly 74,000 votes, but leaves Michigan as undecided even though Biden leads there by 144,000 votes. Go figure.
Other outlets are spewing the same election conspiracy in different forms. While the Daily Caller and Daily Wire have mostly couched election conspiracies and pivoted to Harry Styles trying to feminize manhood, sites like Breibart and Gateway Pundit are wall-to-wall with fraud exclusives. The latter featuring a multi-part series chronicling voter fraud in multiple states. Alex Jones’ Infowars has waded even deeper into the dreck, including analysts who explain why Trump is still likely to win a second term.
The disinformation is everywhere, and it’s not hard for disaffected Fox viewers to fuel their election fantasies and find exactly what they’d like to hear somewhere else on the internet.