On Monday night, Fox News anchor and conservative pundit Sean Hannity urged his viewers to tweet their criticisms to "fake news Jake Tapper." People tweeted, but they weren't the vicious attacks Hannity likely craved. In fact, Twitter turned into a veritable Tapper love fest.
Hannity spent much of his segment trashing Tapper and CNN anchor Brian Selter.
"You can call out fake news right at the source," Hannity said. "For example, you can tell fake news Jake Tapper exactly what you think of his interview with Anthony Scaramucci. You can do it on Twitter."
It's the kind of petty, mean-spirited move one would expect from Hannity, a man whose style of reporting recently led to the walk-back of a prestigious award. Some even speculate that a heated Twitter exchange between Tapper and Hannity over the revocation of that award is what motivated the Fox News anchor's attack, as CNN's reporting on the incident was something he took issue with.
Instead of inspiring right-leaning trolls though, Hannity's call to arms actually bolstered support for Tapper and CNN. Furthermore, many of these tweets had little good to say about Hannity himself.
I’m a conservative, and I think @jaketapper is one of the best in the business. Tough on Obama and tough on Trump. THAT’S fair and balanced.— Autumn Price (@AutumnDawnPrice) July 25, 2017
Amid tweets covering far more important things, Tapper took a moment to acknowledge the explosion of compliments on Twitter and toss a small jab in Hannity's direction.
I don't think that one turned out the way he intended. Thanks, everyone. Very kind of you. pic.twitter.com/7ANilJ6scE— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) July 25, 2017
News shouldn't be a below-the-belt battle between journalists, but with Fox News louder than ever, sometimes things get unnecessarily ugly. Thankfully, the majority of people on Twitter took this as an opportunity to remind Hannity that picking fights over the internet does not a journalist make.
However, it does reveal Hannity to be a very small man.
Banner and thumbnail credit: Flickr user Gage Skidmore