News networks broke into round-the-clock coverage of special counsel Bob Mueller’s first indictments in the Trump-Russia probe Monday, but Fox News’ “Fox & Friends” continued to play to their audience-of-one and rushed to comfort the president.
Rather than focus on the indictments against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his top aide, Rick Gates, that were unsealed later Monday morning, the Fox panel discussed Hillary Clinton’s ties to the Trump dossier, the Obama Uranium One deal, and cheeseburgers. Yep, cheeseburgers.
In fact, host Brian Kilmeade suggested that the indictment “makes you wonder about the credibility of the whole thing.”
Kilmeade said that if the charges are related to Manafort, maybe it’s “something that happened before he even joined the Trump administration.”
Manafort never joined the Trump administration, and while the charges are unrelated to the campaign, they do encompass the time he spent as Trump’s campaign chief.
“Susan Collins said there’s no evidence of collusion, that’s important, but there are a couple of stories out there that Paul Manafort apparently back in 2012 apparently he had some money infusions from overseas to the tune of $3 million,” added co-host Steve Doocy.
Collins actually said she has “not yet seen any definitive evidence of collusion.”
“Just keep in mind this,” Kilmeade piled on. “Just because they indict you, it doesn’t mean you are guilty. So if it is Paul Manafort, then they get to fight back. Mount a defense and find out what they have and go to trial and see where it goes from there.”
The panel then proceeded to transition back to Hillary Clinton.
“And I’m wondering if it’s related to last week in the beginning of the week there is a lot of talk about GPS and Fusion GPS and who hired what and who was telling the truth about that,” Kilmeade said. “And if maybe people were feeling pressure inside the Mueller investigation to do something to let people know they were making some progress. Meanwhile, let’s talk about Fusion GPS.”
They later discussed the Fusion GPS story with former Trump aide Michael Caputa, who explained how the dossier “exposes the Russian connections to the Clintons and the Democrats.”
“Great job by MichaelCaputo on @foxandfriends,” Trump tweeted, confirming he was watching as he does every morning.
Great job by MichaelCaputo on @foxandfriends.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 30, 2017
When it became official that the indictments were against Manafort and Gates, the panel transitioned to a discussion of the “controversial” new cheeseburger emoji.
Paul Manafort just agreed to turn himself in to the FBI. What should we report on?
Fox News: Hamburger emoji pic.twitter.com/Wjsvkb2coW
— Roberto Ferdman (@robferdman) October 30, 2017
Fox: emoji journalism pic.twitter.com/NYovIEC83N
— ⚡️ Owen (@ow) October 30, 2017
Maybe Fox News is broadcasting from the dimension where Hillary is president and the biggest scandal right now is the hamburger emoji. https://t.co/TAe28A6ywd
— Matt Novak (@paleofuture) October 30, 2017
In their defense, the Hamburger emoji is far more interesting than a Manafort arrest that leads back to his Podesta days…
— American Son (@GunnerVike) October 30, 2017
The network continued to avoid the issue throughout the day.
FOX: KNEELING NFL PLAYERS!! pic.twitter.com/O64LSbr0db
— Nathan McDermIT🤡 (@natemcdermott) October 30, 2017
Yes, the leak of the info is the biggest concern, and not the fact that multiple people are being charged with serious crimes
Fox is a joke pic.twitter.com/Byp7jWVXoW
— Red T Raccoon (@RedTRaccoon) October 30, 2017
Fox News doesn't even try to hide the fact that they are state television pic.twitter.com/716vhVvXSI
— R. Saddler 📎🗽 (@Politics_PR) October 30, 2017