Stephen Hayes and Jonah Goldberg, two longtime conservative commentators on Fox News, said they were leaving the network, concluding that “the voices of those responsible are being drowned out by the irresponsible.”
They specifically quoted Tucker Carlson’s documentary in three parts Patriot cleansing, which ran on Fox Nation, which they said was “a collection of incoherent conspiracy theories, filled with factual inaccuracies, half-truths, misleading imagery and judgmental omissions. And its message is clear: The U.S. government is targeting patriotic Americans in the same way – and with the same tools – as it used to target al-Qaeda. “
The series put forward a series of conspiracy theories about the siege of the Capitol on January 6, including that it was a “false flag” operation, that “the left is chasing the right,” and that there is a civil war on terror orchestrated by deep state. Hayes and Goldberg wrote that such allegations were “dangerous” and that Carlson’s series was just one in a series of cases of misinformation put forward by Fox News’ opinion page.
They wrote on their website The Dispatch: “Over the past five years, some of Fox’s top opinion leaders have reinforced the false claims and bizarre stories about Donald Trump or offered their own in his service. In this sense, the release of Patriot cleansing was not an isolated incident, it was just the most sinister example of a long-standing trend. Patriot cleansing creates an alternative story from January 6 that is not only contradicted by common sense, not only by the testimonies and journalistic statements of many participants, but by the reporting from Fox News’ news department itself. “
Patriot cleansing ran on the subscription streaming service Fox Nation, but the trailer for the series received not only setbacks from characters like Liz Cheney, but other Fox News personalities like Geraldo Rivera. Anti Defamation League also urged the network not to run it.
A Fox News spokesman did not immediately return a request for comment. But Carlson told the New York Times’ Ben Smith, who first reported on departures, that it was “good news,” and “our viewers will be grateful.”
Hayes and Goldberg have been on the network since 2009.
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