'Special Guest' Sean Hannity to appear at Trump rally

Fox News is apparently allowing host Sean Hannity to appear as a "special guest" at President Donald Trump's...

Posted: Nov 5, 2018 11:46 AM
Updated: Nov 5, 2018 11:46 AM

Fox News is apparently allowing host Sean Hannity to appear as a "special guest" at President Donald Trump's final rally of the midterm season.

Hannity's involvement was promoted in a Trump campaign press release on Sunday afternoon. Rush Limbaugh will also be there, the campaign said, promising "special guest appearances" by both men at the rally in Cape Girardeau, Missouri.

21st Century Fox

Business and industry sectors

Business, economy and trade

Companies

Conservatism

Conservative media

Donald Trump

Elections and campaigns

Fox News

Government and public administration

Government bodies and offices

Media bias

Media content

Media industry

Political Figures - US

Politics

Rush Limbaugh

Sean Hannity

Society

Tea Party movement

US federal government

White House

Political events

Political rallies

Monday's rally plan reaffirms how the Trump White House and parts of the conservative media ecosystem have effectively merged. Many Trump fans have cheered this development, but it opens up Hannity and Limbaugh to criticism. After all, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow was never a "special guest" at a Barack Obama speech. Fox's Bill O'Reilly was never a "special guest" at a George W. Bush event.

So it's quite a sight to see a Trump press release promoting TV and radio stars as his "special guests."

Hannity is not a journalist, but he works at a hugely popular network with "News" in its name, alongside staffers who have to follow policies that forbid this type of political involvement.

Perhaps that's why Fox News reacted to the press release by saying that Hannity is not sponsoring the rally or campaigning for Trump.

A Fox spokeswoman said that Hannity will host his 9 p.m. show from the rally site, and he will interview Trump there.

The White House's communications team, led by former Fox News co-president Bill Shine, set up a similar on-site interview in Las Vegas in September. Trump arrived at the arena, walked up to Hannity's stage for a live chat, then began his rally. It was a made for prime time package, and Monday looks similar.

But the Trump campaign isn't making a distinction between interviewing the president and showing up at the rally as a "special guest." The campaign's website encourages people to sign up for tickets to the event "w/Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, & Lee Greenwood."

It is unusual to see Limbaugh showing up at a rally like this. The Trump campaign pointed out that Cape Girardeau is Limbaugh's hometown.

Trump's "willingness to bring them out on the campaign trail highlights once again how little space now exists between the White House and conservative media," professor and columnist Nicole Hemmer told CNN.

Hemmer, the author of "Messengers of the Right," about the history of conservative media, acknowledged that the merger is not surprising, "but it is a crucially important characteristic of the Trump administration and the conservative movement more broadly."

Given the midterm trends favoring Democrats, Hemmer said Hannity's and Limbaugh's appearances are "more a show of solidarity than a celebration of success."

Hannity and Limbaugh, the kings of conservative talk radio, have been emphasizing GOP get-out-the-vote efforts on their respective shows.

By going on Hannity's show on the eve of the election, Trump is guaranteed one more chance to speak directly to millions of his most loyal supporters. Hannity averages more than 3 million viewers a night.

In the past, Fox News has shown reluctance to have its talk show hosts participate in political events, even though some of the hosts openly campaign for the GOP on their shows.

In 2010, Fox forced Hannity to cancel his plans to appear at a Tea Party rally in Ohio.

At the time, Rupert Murdoch said, "I don't think we should be supporting the Tea Party or any other party."

Times have changed.

Huntsville
Broken Clouds
65° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 65°
Florence
Scattered Clouds
66° wxIcon
Hi: 82° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 66°
Fayetteville
Overcast
66° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 66°
Decatur
Few Clouds
65° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 65°
Scottsboro
Overcast
66° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 66°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 16530

Reported Deaths: 591
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Mobile2124112
Jefferson1712100
Montgomery154134
Tuscaloosa67813
Marshall6689
Lee53332
Franklin5147
Shelby48419
Tallapoosa41864
Butler39213
Chambers34924
Madison3184
Elmore3137
Walker2991
Baldwin2819
Etowah24411
Dallas2443
DeKalb2413
Morgan2311
Coffee2241
Lowndes22210
Sumter2136
Autauga2053
Houston1884
Bullock1833
Pike1790
Colbert1612
Russell1590
Marengo1556
Lauderdale1532
Calhoun1523
Hale1517
Choctaw1488
Wilcox1347
Barbour1321
Clarke1292
Randolph1257
Marion11911
St. Clair1161
Pickens1014
Talladega1003
Dale990
Chilton971
Cullman960
Greene924
Limestone870
Winston820
Covington771
Jackson752
Crenshaw722
Bibb711
Henry712
Macon712
Washington666
Blount581
Escambia493
Lawrence460
Geneva400
Conecuh351
Coosa351
Monroe352
Perry350
Cherokee342
Clay272
Lamar210
Fayette130
Cleburne131
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 21679

Reported Deaths: 356
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Davidson489460
Shelby4718107
Trousdale13934
Rutherford111622
Sumner85245
Hamilton71915
Bledsoe6081
Williamson53310
Putnam4615
Robertson4412
Tipton4303
Lake4130
Wilson3878
Out of TN3794
Knox3575
Bedford2744
Montgomery2613
Rhea1980
Hardeman1940
Madison1752
Loudon1370
McMinn13614
Macon1243
Cheatham1180
Cumberland1111
Dickson1100
Fayette1102
Bradley1081
Blount893
Maury810
Sevier762
Washington750
Coffee680
Unassigned670
Wayne630
Gibson611
Monroe612
Sullivan602
Hickman570
Lauderdale561
Dyer500
Franklin491
Greene482
Anderson391
Marion381
DeKalb370
Grundy321
Hawkins312
Haywood302
Smith301
Hamblen302
Henry300
Marshall301
White300
Obion281
Jefferson280
Carroll271
Meigs260
Overton260
Weakley260
Lincoln250
Lawrence240
Warren220
Cocke200
Carter191
Jackson170
Morgan170
Cannon170
Campbell171
Roane160
Crockett162
Perry160
Johnson160
Polk150
Sequatchie150
Henderson140
Humphreys131
Chester120
Fentress120
Giles120
McNairy120
Scott110
Stewart110
Hardin112
Claiborne90
Houston80
Benton71
Grainger60
Clay60
Decatur50
Van Buren40
Union40
Unicoi40
Moore30
Pickett30
Lewis30
Hancock10

 

 

Community Events