During an appearance on the Fox News program Sunday Morning Futures with host Maria Bartiromo over the weekend, former President Donald Trump once again claimed (falsely) that he was the rightful winner of last year’s presidential election. While his claims have never had any legitimacy and still don’t now, the problem is that this rhetoric has already been proven to incite deadly violence — and yet, Trump is still going with it, and Fox is still airing it. Is there just about any low point that could provide political gain that Trump and Fox would avoid?
On Fox, Trump even insisted that “the people aren’t standing for” the “rigged election,” which sounds suspiciously close to another outright excuse from the former president for the deadly violence that took place at the Capitol on January 6, when his rioting supporters attacked Congress, inspired by his election lies. Trump has already publicly sought to justify what happened, writing on Twitter shortly after the chaos that “these are the things and events that happen” when an election is stolen — which, of course, did not actually happen, but reality hasn’t stopped Trump yet.
On Fox, Trump ranted in part as follows:
‘Georgia was so corrupt. It was so incredibly corrupt. Frankly, nobody’s seen anything like it. And you have a Secretary of State, you have a governor that does nothing about it. And they have to get on the ball… We won this election in a landslide. We got 12 million more votes… 12 million more than I got the last time, the last time I won. This was a rigged election and the people aren’t standing for it. So we will go forward, and let’s see what happens.’
Hear Trump’s comments below (the video was shared by an account in support of him, and the caption perpetrates the nonsense):
President Trump on the rigged election:
“We won this election in a landslide…This was a rigged election and the people aren’t standing for it. So we will go forward and let’s see what happens.”
Fox is all of sudden covering the rigged election? Timing is everything 🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/KW0lVX0yyl
— Teresa 2.0 (@Thorsome4) July 11, 2021
Republican leaders are continuing to provide space for Trump’s lies. Most Republicans in Congress, for instance, have refused to support efforts to launch an investigation of the Capitol riot, and such an investigation would, of course, include a look at the role of Trump and his fellow Republican liars in inspiring the assault on Congress. A full 147 Republicans across both chambers of Congress voted against certifying Joe Biden’s presidential election wins in key states — in other words, conspiratorial, anti-democratic nonsense is clearly embedded within the rhetorical fabric of the GOP. In reality, they are advocating against the duly documented outcome of the democratic process as it stands in the United States. Instead, they’re backing what amounts to authoritarianism.