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Inside Fox News: How the Impeachment is Opening New Divisions in the Newsroom

Relishing triumph over doubters is something Trump also enjoys.

"This is was," said Laura Ingraham on the Prime-time show, describing a letter from White House counsel Pat A. Cipollone that said the White House would not permit the president or any member of the Trump administration to appear before the House impeachment inquiry.

She could just as easily be referred to the tensions roiling Fox. Trump is a famously loyal viewer of the channel, and the attention he pays it has been to drive ratings and amplify the messages of his most outspoken hosts. Because they were not authorized to do so, they were not responsible for the state of affairs

The president is taking a look at the foxes of the United States. Right-wing media is trying to outflank the channel. Internal strife is spilling out onto the airwaves. And yet, these are heady times for Fox News.

Fox's relentless focus on Monica Lewinsky while covering the 1

998 impeachment of Bill Clinton propel the channel's early success. This impeachment story finds Fox on the side of the sitting president, and farewell to it.

The September night house speaker Nancy Pelosi announced the opening of a formal impeachment inquiry, Trump ally Sean Hannity's show drew 3.9 million viewers, according to Nielsen data. The channel has long been listening to its MSNBC and CNN ratings.

Fox serves as creative inspiration for the president and his political message. Fox News holds over Republican voters – and in turn their congressional representatives – is a crucial factor in the battle over impeachment continues.

"Richard Nixon would have killed his own dog for that child of a counterforce," said Rick Wilson, a Republican political consultant and never-trumper who frequently appears on MSNBC.

The International Conflict is open to discussion on air. Tuesday night, after shaper Trump attorney Joe DiGenova called the Whistleblower Who Spurred the Impeachment inquiry a "Suicide Bomber" on Ingraham's show, she followed up quickly to remind viewers that DiGenova meant a "political suicide bomber." Viewers – and perhaps other Fox personalities – who objected to the comments, they said, "If you still think that, then you really should watch another show where we need to spell it all out for you . "

Last week, diGenova was involved in another dust-up.

The consternation started when former judge Andrew Napolitano, a Fox pundit who has turned on Trump in recent months, told Fox chief news anchor Shepard Smith on- That's when Trump's call to Ukraine's president, during which Joe Biden made a "crime." Later the same day, Fox News host Tucker Carlson, who has a warm relationship with Fox Corp. CEO Lachlan Murdoch, invited DiGenova to his show. DiGenova called Napolitano a "fool." The next day, Smith said it was "repugnant" for Carlson not to defend Napolitano. Smith has a long-standing friendship with Wallace, the Fox News president, who uses Smith's show.

"Internally, Hannity is a live man with an opinion guy, and "Wilson said. "But the battering that guys like Shep Smith and even [anchor] Bill Hemmer take it easy."

On-air sniping is a relatively new phenomenon for Fox News. Under longtime chairman and CEO Roger Ailes, who kept a tight rein on Fox's news personalities and created a culture of fear inside the building, said "people have been too afraid to fight in the open like that," said a former producer.

"It's survival of the fittest," one current staffer said, describing a dynamic that tends to favor on-air personalities with the highest ratings and those most willing to engage in a public feud

On his show, Lou Dobbs recently admitted DiGenova and his wife, Victoria Toensing, attorney to accuse "Fox News Sunday" host Chris Wallace of violating an off-the-record agreement. In September, Hannity chided Ingraham for a trump speech. In May, Ingraham called "America's Newsroom," a Fox morning news program hosted by Bill Hemmer and Sandra Smith, to dismiss the media – including Wallace – covering Robert Mueller's letter to Attorney General William Barr, which critiqued Barr's characterization of Mueller's report. Ingham, although not by name.

All of the attention has been made in their own right.

Jeanine Pirro, who is an old friend of Trump's and one of his fiercest defenders, has attempted to meet Cecily Strong, who plays Pirro on SNL, according to two people familiar with the incident. "NBC said, 'Uh, we're not interested,'" One of the people said. "" I thought it would be a hoot [to meet Strong]"Pirro said in a Fox News spokesperson statement. "I saw an article several months ago."

[19459006OnFox'sanniversarySen. Lindsey Graham (RS.C.) called "Fox & Friends" to register his disapproval of the president's plan to withdraw American troops from northern Syria. Steve Doocy, Brian Kilmeade and Ainsley Earhardt co-hosts.

These moments are particularly sensitive for the president. In late August, he interviewed the channel for being disloyal and "not working for us," after Sandra Smith interviewed a Democratic National Committee official. Rush Limbaugh has recently called Fox News "The Never-Trump News Network."

The president's base is unlikely to abandon him, but Fox might have been influential with "reluctant." Sarah Longwell, a Republican strategist and publisher of the Bulwark, a neoconservative news and opinion site.

"It's always the most meaningful when the people who." are loyalists break and oppose this president, "she said.

Carlson and Neil Patel wrote in a: "When it comes to stupid things, it's very significant." Daily Caller said, "Trump should not have been on the phone with a foreign head of state encouraging another country to investigate his political opponent, Joe Biden," and that "there's no way to spin this." conclude that while bad, Trump's actions were not impeachable, argued that CNN's White House correspondent Abby Phillip tweeted what a road map for conservative looking for a way to condemn Trump's call to the Ukraine but avoid impeachment. [19659002] "Well, let me tell you why these democrats are more objectionable," added Longwell.

It has been risen by 25 points among Democrats, 21 points among Republicans and 20 points among independents, according to a Washington Post-Schar School Poll.

But the battle over public opinion is FOX TO HELP TRUMP hold the line.

Tuesday afternoon, Mike Emanuel, Fox's chief congressional correspondent, has tweeted that Fox had learned GOP co-sponsors of Rep. Andy Biggs's (94). R-Ariz.) Motion "to condemn and censure" Rep. Adam B. Schiff (D-Calif.), Chair of the House Intelligence Committee. Twenty minutes later, Matt Schlapp, chairman of the American Conservative Union – and husband of former Fox Trump campaign official Mercedes Schlapp: "Woe to those who do not sign the Biggs censure of ship. "

On Wednesday, Biggs tweeted that the number of co-sponsors had ticked up to 98.

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