The combination of Fox & Friends and corrupt former Environmental Protection Administration head Scott Pruitt wouldn’t lead you to expect anything good, and boy did they deliver. Donald Trump’s favorite morning show let Pruitt dictate its questions to him and ran at least one section of its script by him before an appearance.
In one case, Pruitt’s staff pitched an interview to Fox & Friends producer Andrew Murray on communities that were “poorly served by the last administration.”
Murray then copied producer Diana Aloi, saying she said she would follow up with “pre-interview questions on the agreed upon topic, the new direction of the EPA, and helping communities that were poorly served by the last administration.”
In subsequent emails, Aloi repeatedly sought “talking points” and the “top three priorities are for the EPA that Mr. Pruitt would like to discuss specifically.”
Then Aloi got the EPA’s sign-off on the script leading into the Pruitt interview. On another occasion, Fox producers sent Pruitt’s staff a list of topics to be discussed, with six of the eight questions he was asked on air related to those topics. This is all a shocking enough violation of journalistic ethics that even Fox News is pretending to care:
In a statement to The Daily Beast on the apparently semi-scripted interviews, a Fox News Channel spokesperson said, “This is not standard practice whatsoever and the matter is being addressed internally with those involved.”
Yeah, I’ll bet. “Guys, let’s make it a little more subtle until the heat dies down, and see about getting the administration to email you from private, un-FOIA-able email accounts, okay?”
Pruitt is gone, but he wasn’t the only one of his kind in the Trump administration … and Fox News, of course, remains.
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.