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NBC News host Chuck Todd and others questioned the ethics of Fox News and Sean Hannity on Tuesday morning, arguing that the right-wing pundit should not cover Michael Cohen since it was revealed that he had a legal relationship with him.
With the news swirling around Cohen, who was raided by the FBI last week, Todd argued that Fox News should not allow Hannity to continue covering the situation.
“Going to find out what kind of org Fox is today. No serious news org would allow someone this conflicted to cover this story,” Todd wrote on Twitter.
Going to find out what kind of org Fox is today. No serious news org would allow someone this conflicted to cover this story https://t.co/8KX1JLlzpx— Chuck Todd (@chucktodd) April 17, 2018
Todd wasn’t the only one questioning the ethics. The Atlantic said “the ethical implications boggle the mind” in regards to the relationship since the Fox News host had bashed Special Counsel Robert Muller after the FBI’s raid of Cohen. Hannity went so far as to say the special counsel had “declared war” on Trump with the raid.
Todd’s tweet was a springboard for others to question the ethics of Fox News and Hannity covering the Cohen situation.
We know what kind of org Fox is: They allowed serial sexual harassers to lead the company for years, paying women millions to keep quiet. They haven't done anything about the fake Seth Rich story. They'll do something when it hurts the bottom line. https://t.co/gt0DM3d4fx— Emily C. Singer (@CahnEmily) April 17, 2018
We’ve known for years what type of organization they are. https://t.co/uTIOmYXwdN— Jake Dawson (@jdny2) April 17, 2018
“going to find out”— Imani Gandy (@AngryBlackLady) April 17, 2018
Because right up until today, everyone thought they were real respectable-like. https://t.co/U1xp5BecAa
Alan Dershowitz, a frequent guest on Hannity’s television show, also seemed to think there were ethical implications.
“I really think you should have disclosed your relationship with Cohen when you talked about him on this show,” Dershowitz said. “You could have said just that you had asked him for advice or whatever. I think it would have been much, much, better had you disclosed that relationship.”
In response, the Fox News host said his relationship with Cohen was “minor” and said it “had to do with real estate.”
Alan Dershowitz (!) says that Hannity should have disclosed that he was a client of Cohen before discussing the FBI raid last week.— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) April 17, 2018
Hannity responds: "I have the right to privacy." pic.twitter.com/lheMdQWqHl
Meanwhile, Fox & Friends, the organization’s morning talk show, defended their fellow host.
“It’s perfectly logical to think that if you’re friendly with somebody, that you might ask him for legal help,” host Brian Kilmeade said.
On Monday night, Hannity also addressed the situation.
“Michael Cohen never represented me in any legal matter,” he said. “I never retained his services. I never received an invoice. I never paid Michael Cohen for legal fees. I did have occasional brief conversations with Michael Cohen—he’s a great attorney—about legal questions I had.”
Andrew Wyrich is a politics staff writer for the Daily Dot, covering the intersection of politics and the internet. Andrew has written for USA Today, NorthJersey.com, and other newspapers and websites. His work has been recognized by the Society of the Silurians, Investigative Reporters & Editors (IRE), and the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).