First, yes, I’m thinking exactly what you’re thinking. Sean Hannity’s portion of this Donald Trump ad appears to have been shot on an iPhone. Things don’t matter anymore in elections. You need to get past it. Second, yes, Sean Hannity is a big Donald Trump fan. He routinely tosses the Donald leading softballs on air and openly admits to informally advising the Republican nominee. So it’s a bit unclear where the line is at this point. But the longtime Fox News star is also, sort of, a journalist. Perhaps, more accurately, the anchor works for a company that has “news” in its name, and he frequently talks about things that have been in the news. And since everyone always says do what you love and follow your passion, why not combine those two passions—Trump and talking?
Over the weekend, Hannity did just that. He set aside any semblance of journalism ethics or even the scantest remaining whiff of objectivity and literally appeared in a promotional video produced by the Trump campaign declaring his support for the Republican nominee. The eight-minute #HEARTLAND4TRUMP video starts off in idyllic America where every day was a Rudy and Field of Dreams montage mashup before Hillary Clinton ruined it. The spot is narrated by Mark Geist, a security contractor in Benghazi during the attacks, and rolls out the usual cast of Ted Nugent and a series of “TV personalities.” When it’s finally Hannity’s turn, here’s what he has to say:
One of the reasons I’m supporting Donald Trump this year is, No. 1, he’s going to put originalists on the Supreme Court, people that believe in fidelity to the Constitution, separation of powers, co-equal branches of government. He’s a guy that will vet refugees to keep Americans safe. And of course he’s gonna build that wall. He says he’s gonna have Mexico pay for it. That’s fine, as long as we secure the country and of course we don’t want people competing for jobs. He said he will eliminate Obamacare, make us energy-independent. And as somebody who’s been a marksman since I’m 11 years old, protecting our Second Amendment rights are paramount to me.
“We had no knowledge that Sean Hannity was participating in this,” a Fox News spokesperson told the Washington Post, “and he will not be doing anything along these lines for the remainder of the election.”