The New York Times is refusing to apologize to Fox News’ Sean Hannity or retract pieces he says falsely tied his name to at least one American coronavirus death.
“We’ve reported fairly and accurately on Mr. Hannity and there is no basis for a retraction or an apology,” a Times spokesperson told TheWrap after Hannity posted legal letters to his website and threatened to sue the Times and some of its columnists unless the paper retracts and apologizes for pieces that his lawyers claim mischaracterized Hannity’s coverage of the coronavirus pandemic.
Reached for comment Tuesday, a Fox News spokesperson said the primetime host’s letter speaks for itself and pointed TheWrap to Monday night’s “Hannity” program, where he reiterated the points made in his Monday post. His letter dealt specifically with Times columns published on March 22, March 31 and April 18 by Ben Smith, Kara Swisher and Ginia Bellafante, respectively.
“What they wrote was false. It is provably false. Then, rather than do the ethical, honest, journalist thing which would be correct — and that’s retract — and then apologize, what did they do? They secretly stealth-edited their mistake, to me an admission of guilt. The stealth addition, by the way, rendered their phony headline false,” Hannity said Monday night, echoing the content of the legal letter sent to the Times earlier in the day by his attorney, Charles Harder.
He went on to accuse “the mob and the media” of attempting to prevent President Donald Trump from being re-elected in 2020. (Harder has also represented the Trump campaign in its various lawsuits against media outlets.)
Watch Hannity’s segment above.