Following a New York Times report that the FBI questioned whether President Donald Trump was serving as a Russian agent, Fox News’ Sean Hannity accused the agency of having hatched a nefarious plan to sabotage the commander in chief.
During his Monday night monologue, the cable host purported to have “a bombshell” scoop on the “deep state” that far surpassed anything Fox News had previously realized regarding the intelligence community and the ousting of former FBI Director James Comey.
“We now know top people within the FBI, filled with hatred, and frankly, anti-Trump rage, have put aside all values and their blatant political bias, were seeking redemption for the firing of James Comey,” he asserted. “They actually plotted to destroy your duly-elected president, and this goes way beyond what we already knew up until this point.”
However, the main piece of evidence Hannity held up to back his claim was a quote from Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Texas) who told the network that “in May 2017, political bias infected senior FBI leadership, and emotion ― not evidence ― drove their decision-making.”
That was the same month the president fired Comey.
Ratcliffe also told Fox News that it was his line of questioning with former FBI General Counsel James A. Baker that revealed the agency had looked into whether Trump had dismissed Comey at Russia’s behest. The congressman stated that he felt the information leaked regarding the transcript of his discussion with Baker was “selective” and that the full version would prove his above quote to be true.
Touting Ratcliffe’s remark on bias, Hannity slammed the intel community for opening the probe “without a single shred of evidence, zero probable cause, zero proof of any collusion.”
“It was a witch hunt,” he declared.
Still, it remains impossible to determine the credibility of Ratcliffe’s remarks without the complete transcript.
According to the Times and its sources, FBI agents and senior officials within the agency had become concerned over whether the president’s firing of Comey obstructed justice given that there was an ongoing investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election. In response to that and suspicions the president may have been wittingly or unwittingly working for Russia, the agency launched its investigation.