Fox News Anchor Shep Smith Debunks His Own Network's Conspiracy Theory

On Tuesday night, Shepard Smith debunked the widely spread (and false) Uranium One conspiracy theory — a work of fiction his colleagues are pushing to this day.

It’s not every day that you see a news anchor “fact check” their own organization. But on Tuesday, that’s exactly what happene, and on Fox News no less.

Anchor Shepard Smith, who has been with Fox News since its inception in 1996, helped debunk a widely-held conspiracy theory popular among colleagues at his network.

Smith spoke on the so-called Uranium One conspiracy, which holds that a deal was made between Hillary Clinton, while she was serving as secretary of State, and Russia, for the transfer of nuclear material to that nation. In exchange, according to this theory, Clinton received millions of dollars in donations to her and her husband’s charity, the Clinton Foundation.

Those allegations are beyond the realm of truth, however, and have been debunked on several occasions. Nevertheless, news anchors on Fox have continuously pushed the conspiracy to this day.

Their efforts, despite being tied to a false narrative, seem to be working: President Donald Trump still encourages people to look into the theory every so often through Twitter.

But on Smith’s program Tuesday night, the Fox News host corrected the record — including calling a Trump claim from June 2016 about the deal “inaccurate.”

“The Clinton State Department had no power to approve or veto that transaction. It could do neither,” Smith said.

He went on to detail that nine departments — not solely the State Department — were given power to advise former President Barack Obama before the deal could be made, and that the deal didn’t transfer American uranium to the Kremlin at all.

“The nine department heads all approved the sale of Uranium One,” explained Smith. “It was unanimous, not a Hillary Clinton approval.”

Smith concluded his segment with a final blow to the conspiracy theory.

"The accusation is predicated on the charge that Secretary Clinton approved the sale. She did not. A committee of nine evaluated the sale, the president approved the sale, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and others had to offer permits, and none of the uranium was exported for use by the US to Russia."

Despite citing the facts, many viewers loyal to the conspiracy theory lashed out at Smith.

It's naive to think the right's dedication to hating Clinton could be overturned by the reasoned explanation of an anchor who has been part of the network for more than 20 years. Some people latch onto ideas so hard that, even in the face of overwhelming evidence contradicting their beliefs, they’re still willing to hold onto them.

Yet despite some of his viewers' misgivings, Smith should be given huge props for examining this issue and bravely calling out those who peddle this fictitious account — including his peers just down the hall.

Banner / Thumbnail : Shannon Stapleton/Reuters 

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