In a very rare moment for Fox News, two of its correspondents were forced to admit that its rival network, CNN, was wrongly accused of scripting last week’s town hall with Parkland, Florida, shooting victims.
Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson both issued corrections on Tuesday night for previous comments made on their shows that suggested CNN made students ask scripted questions at the heated town hall regarding the high school shooting massacre that occurred on Feb. 14.
Carlson was the first of the two to concede. Last week on his show, he hosted 17-year-old shooting survivor Colton Haab whose comments initially sparked the claims.
“For the sake of honesty and full disclosure to which we are committed, we have to tell you there is no evidence as of right now that CNN tried to give Colton Haab a scripted question, and we wanted you to know that,” Carlson said.
Tucker Carlson response to this tonight: https://t.co/K2Oc3MQR4e.— Paul Farhi (@farhip) February 28, 2018
Hannity’s correction followed. Toward the end of his show, he gave a “quick update” to his viewers, asserting that “our job is always to strive for the truth, and we want to correct the record.”
First Tucker, now @seanhannity also backing off story that CNN offered scripted questions to a Florida shooting survivor.— Jon Levine (@LevineJonathan) February 28, 2018
"What [Colton Haab] told all news outlets last week was inaccurate. Our job is always to strive for the truth and we want to correct the record" pic.twitter.com/WEDxyTsM3m
Both of the hosts made comments last week based on statements from Haab, who claimed that he declined an invitation to participate in CNN’s town hall because the network tried to make him ask a question that he did not come up with himself.
“Originally I had thought that it was going to be more of my own question and my own say, and then it turned out to be more of just a script,” Haab told Carlson last week. “And she had actually said that over the phone that I needed to stick to the script.”
However, emails obtained by The Inquirer and eventually released by CNN, indicated that one of the network’s producers was just trying to scale down a 700-word statement Haab’s father wanted him to read into a single question.
Alas, conservative media outlets were quick to jump on the chance to smear CNN for trying to change Haab’s question to fit an anti-gun agenda.
CNN released the original emails after the teen’s father, Glenn Haab, took an altered set of them to HuffPost and Fox News, presumably, to discredit the network. He later admitted that he omitted several words from the email, although he maintained it was not intentional.
“There was nothing malicious behind it,” Glenn Haab told The Associated Press.
CNN reporter Andrew Kaczynski also revealed on Twitter that Carlson actually had the truth available to him since Friday.
I'd also point this information was available to him on Friday, when he attacked CNN for "hypocrisy" but I am glad the record was corrected tonight none the less.— andrew kaczynski🤔 (@KFILE) February 28, 2018
It's certainly gratifying to watch these anchors tuck their tails between their legs, so to speak, and correct the false narratives they promoted. However, the incident is rather unsurprising. Let's face it: Fox News didn't earn the nickname "Faux News" for nothing.
Banner/Thumbnail Photo Credit:
Sean Hannity image credit: Reuters, Mike Segar
Tucker Carlson image credit: Flickr, Gage Skidmore