If there were any doubt as to what Fox News host Jesse Watters thinks about Donald Trump uttering false claims about past elections on live television, his response to other cable networks’ fact-checking of the former president says it all: “So what?”
On Wednesday, Watters griped about CNN and MSNBC informing their viewers the previous night that despite what Trump had said about his prior campaigns during a victory speech in New Hampshire, he has never won that state in a general election. “Completely untrue,” CNN’s Daniel Dale noted, as did MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow, who broke into Trump’s live remarks to do so. While Trump has now won three primaries in New Hampshire dating back to 2016, the Granite state went blue in the two previous general elections.
Yet Watters appeared annoyed at the notion of not allowing an easily provable false declaration to go by uncorrected.
“Donald Trump promised to lock in the nomination by Super Tuesday, and the media is foaming at the mouth. He’s popular and his policies are even more popular, and the media won’t expose you to a popular politician with popular policies,” said Watters, whose network has been the top-rated cable channel for eight consecutive years, and whose show was the second-most watched of 2023, after Fox’s The Five.
Watters then played clips from CNN’s and MSNBC’s handling of Trump’s false comments. After, he began with a suspect claim of his own.
“First Iowa, now in New Hampshire. Our cable competition, if you can call them that, will not take the former president live,” he insisted, even though both CNN and MSNBC did air parts of Trump’s New Hampshire speech. As for Trump’s victory speech after the Iowa caucus, CNN again aired a portion of it, while MSNBC opted against it.
The real point Watters appeared to be making is that neither network will take Trump live and not barge in with pesky fact-checks. Fox host Sean Hannity, appropriately enough, didn’t dare do such a thing Tuesday night.
Watters continued:“So CNN excavated their fact-checker like Encino Man to interrupt a historic acceptance speech, because Donald Trump’s boasting that he won New Hampshire three times when he only won it twice?” he said with a shrug. “So what?”
“And voters need to be protected from such dangerous language?” Watters added sarcastically.