“When Hannity’s off the air he gossips with Trump and gives advice about who to hire,” Stelter said on CNN’s “Reliable Sources.” “So let’s just underscore how weird this is. No TV host has ever had this kind of relationship with a U.S. president before.”
“No TV host has ever had this kind of relationship with a US president before … Sure, Obama had big fans on MSNBC, but … no one ever thought Keith Olbermann was Obama’s ‘shadow Chief of Staff'”: @BrianStelter on the relationship between Trump and Fox’s Hannity pic.twitter.com/C46vYLryA8
— Reliable Sources (@ReliableSources) July 8, 2018
Stelter then broadened his criticism to include Fox News as a whole, saying that the conservative network’s support for Trump signals a sort of “merger between a culture-war TV station and a culture-war president.” “No network has ever propped up a president quite like this before. Sure, Obama had big fans on MSNBC, but there wasn’t this kind of coordination. No one ever thought Keith Olbermann was Obama’s ‘shadow chief of staff.’ But that’s how some Trump advisers describe Hannity.””This is new and it’s weird, and we shouldn’t get used to it,” he added. Trump is said to talk to Hannity regularly and to consult with him on decisions such as hires within his administration. The president has also tweeted previews of Hannity’s Fox News show.
Big show tonight on @seanhannity! 9:00 P.M. on @FoxNews
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 11, 2018
In fact, the president has hired multiple Fox News alumni to his administration. Heather Nauert, the State Department’s chief spokeswoman, is a former Fox News host. Last week, Trump hired the network’s former co-president, Bill Shine, to lead the White House’s communications team.