Fox News Responds After White House Demands Network Issue Retraction

Fox News Responds After White House Demands Network Issue Retraction

Fox News responded on Thursday after the White House demanded a retraction of its coverage of alleged bribery allegations against Hunter Biden, the son of President Joe Biden.

The network said it stood by its coverage of those allegations and no such retraction would be offered.

On Wednesday, Ian Sams, White House spokesman for oversight and investigations, fumed about the allegations, which Fox News covered both on its airwaves and online.

Sams argued in a letter to network executives that since a former FBI informant who claimed to have had knowledge of the alleged bribery was indicted for allegedly lying, Fox News needed to retract its coverage, Deadline reported.

The White House official was referring to Alexander Smirnov, who has been charged with lying to federal agents and falsifying records.

Smirnov has pleaded not guilty to those charges.

In a letter addressed to Fox News Media CEO Suzanne Scott, Fox News President Jay Wallace and Bryan Boughton, the network’s Washington bureau chief, Sams slammed network hosts Sean Hannity and Jesse Watters.

He also pointed to numerous Fox News articles and opinion stories with which the White House had issues.

“I would cite the number of times Jesse Watters and Sean Hannity promoted this allegation and made false statements about President Biden on primetime television throughout this time period, but the footnote citations would fill multiple pages,” Sams wrote.

“As you of course now know, the source of this allegation has been federally indicted for making the whole thing up,” he continued, according to The Hill. “Despite this, Fox has taken no steps to retract, correct, or update its reporting on this false allegation from 2023.”

“We feel strongly that all Fox News Digital articles on this topic should at a minimum be updated with editor’s notes informing readers that the source of this allegation has been federally indicted for making it up,” Sams wrote.

“We also feel strongly that Fox News Channel television personalities like Hannity and Watters, among others, should inform their viewers on air that they have been sharing a discredited allegation from a source who has been federally indicted for making it up,” he said.

In a letter obtained by the outlet, a Fox News representative defended its coverage, noting it had covered all developments in relation to the allegations — including Smirnov’s indictment.

“Fox News Media has reported on all key developments since the announcement that Alexander Smirnov was charged with lying to the FBI, featuring the story prominently,” the representative said.

“We will continue to report on developments in all aspects of the ongoing investigations, hearings, and trials.”

Smirnov was arrested four weeks ago and has been ordered to remain in jail as a judge considered him a flight risk, The Washington Post reported.

The dual American and Israeli citizen has accused Hunter Biden and his father of accepting $5 million apiece from the Ukrainian energy company Burisma, where the former sat on the board during Joe Biden’s tenure as vice president.

An attorney for Smirnov defended his client and said he had been a reliable asset for the FBI for years.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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