Fancy some infighting? Look no further than the latest spat Wednesday between Fox News personalities Geraldo Rivera and Sean Hannity over the topic of the violent January 6 riots. Though the two are friends off-air, Rivera spared no words when he accused Hannity of “gaslighting” the public regarding the Capitol insurrection.
Fact From Fiction
The conversation between the two panelists got testy as they discussed the House committee’s undergoing hearing on the January riots. Hannity had invited Rivera as well as conservative political commentator, Dan Bongino, onto his show.
Hannity started the segment by leveling some questions at Rivera such as why the DC police chief was denied assistance six times during the riot, and what was Nancy Pelosi’s role in preparing the Capitol for such an event.
Rivera responded by welcoming his fellow panelists and hoping for an “erudite discussion” on the topic, though that went out the window with his next comment addressed towards Hannity.
“I think you’ve been, with all due respect and I love you, gaslighting, changing the subject,” Rivera said to Hannity. “The fact that the Capitol was targeted and that the prime instigator, the one who unleashed the mob, was the president of the United States. For god sakes, Sean …”
Rivera was certainly on the offensive and sounded like he was tired of Hannity focusing on the details leading up to the riot instead of what exactly happened on January 6 and for what reasons.
That’s when Hannity interrupted saying, “Geraldo, you just made an accusation against me. We’ve been friends a long time. Wait a minute. You just told me I’m gaslighting.”
As one would expect from Fox News, what happened next was an indiscernible bout of yelling as the two men talked over each other. Hannity of course defended former President Donald Trump, saying that he only told supporters to “peacefully and patriotically march to the Capitol so [their] voices would be heard.”
Agree To Disagree
Hannity later made comparisons between the Capitol riots and last summer’s Black Lives Matter protests echoing sentiments from fellow Fox commentator Tucker Carlson. Bongino also took shots at Rivera as well but as usual, not a clear consensus or agreement on the issue was made.
Around the eight-minute mark, Hannity simply ended the segment with an “Alright I gotta go guys,” and cut off Rivera while he was still speaking. So much for that “erudite” discussion he spoke of earlier.
The on-air squabble highlights the country’s division on what to make of the deadly attack earlier this year. As Rivera said, Hannity has been using his platform to shift blame for the riots away from former President Donald Trump. While both sides of the aisle have condemned the riots, some members of the GOP have taken great strides to downplay the events of January 6.
No Stranger To Controversy
If it’s one thing, Fox News has never been one to shy away from controversy no matter how extreme. Hannity is simply one commentator in a roster of other divisive personalities in the network, but it is surprising to see a fellow panelist stand up to him on-air for once. Other Fox antics include Megyn Kelly defending Britney Spears’ conservatorship, to Greg Gutfeld picking fights with comedian Russell Brand. If there’s a way to stir the pot for some intrigue, Fox News certainly finds a way.