“Morning Joe” didn’t miss an opportunity to marinate over the news that Sean Hannity had been a client of Trump attorney Michael Cohen. Co-host Mika Brzezinski raged at her primetime rival and denounced his failure to disclose his relationship with Cohen to the public.
“He’s lying to his viewers, bold-face lying to his viewers to not disclose that he is a third client of Michael Cohen,” said Brzezinski on Tuesday. “But yet to do these incredible hit jobs on the raid on Michael Cohen’s office of which his stuff is being raided and taken away, this is crazy. This is crazy town in the news business.”
“If you do not take him into the office and figure out how to go forward with this host on Fox News, then I don’t — I don’t know what you’re doing over there,” she added. “I don’t know what has happened over there.”
Scarborough offered his sympathy for the good journalists at Fox News (too many to name on-air apparently.) The show singled out Shepard Smith for a special commendation.
“You saw it written on Shep Smith’s face yesterday,” said Willie Geist. “In a normal world, of course, this would be a massive problem … Fox has a responsibility to look at this.”
On Monday, a federal judge in New York forced attorneys for Michael Cohen to reveal the names of two other clients who had retained the Trump fixer in 2017 and 2018. One was Fox News firebrand Sean Hannity.
In addition to completely overshadowing the Pulitzer Prize announcements, the news sent a tremor throughout Fox News as network hosts were forced to grapple with how the story should be covered. Since the departure of Bill O’Reilly, Hannity has emerged as the most powerful anchor at the network and his primetime show is widely considered the anchor of the channel’s primetime coverage.
In a statement to TheWrap yesterday, Hannity insisted that Cohen had never “represented” him.
“Michael Cohen has never represented me in any matter. I never retained him, received an invoice, or paid legal fees. I have occasionally had brief discussions with him about legal questions about which I wanted his input and perspective,” said the Fox News host.
“I assumed those conversations were confidential, but to be absolutely clear they never involved any matter between me and a third party.”