Fox News Fumbles Facts, Flings Fiction: Labels Biden as a ‘Dictator

As Tuesday night’s news cycle buzzed with the indictment of former President Donald Trump over his inappropriate relocation of classified government documents, Fox News twisted the narrative. The network flashed a provocative chyron below live feeds of Trump and current President Joe Biden, painting the latter as a “wannabe dictator” orchestrating the arrest of his “political rival.”

Unfortunately for Fox, the chyron fell flat on facts. Biden, in truth, had no hand in the decision to prosecute Trump. The Department of Justice (DOJ), armed with concrete evidence of Trump’s transgressions, persuaded a Florida-based federal grand jury to hit Trump with 37 criminal charges.

Nevertheless, Fox News boldly brandished the unfounded claims in prime time, feeding their pliable audience a potent dose of misinformation. “WANNABE DICTATOR SPEAKS AT WHITE HOUSE AFTER HAVING HIS POLITICAL RIVAL ARRESTED,” the chyron blared, taking liberties with the truth.

Biden has maintained he held no sway in the move to press charges against Trump. The torchbearer of the investigation, Special Counsel Jack Smith, is an experienced hand at examining and prosecuting high-profile figures, including big-name politicians on both sides of the aisle.

Outraged critics wasted no time in calling out Fox News’s questionable editorial choice. Mother Jones news writer Abigail Weinberg vented, “For a network with ‘News’ in its title to broadcast an outright lie is appalling.” She warned of the dangerous trajectory right-wing media might adopt as the presidential race unfolds.

The Fox News chyron echoes the baseless accusations Trump and his allies have repeatedly thrown at Biden, Smith, and the DOJ throughout the inquiry.

In a fiery Wednesday night address from his New Jersey property, Trump berated the investigation as the most “evil and heinous abuse of power in the history of our country,” and disparaged Smith as a “thug” and a “raging and uncontrolled Trump hater.”

Trump took to Truth Social, accusing Biden of being “the president who, together with a band of his closest thugs, misfits, and Marxists, tried to destroy American Democracy!” The ironic twist? Trump himself sought to destabilize democracy by attempting to overturn his 2020 presidential election loss to Biden.

Despite the weight of evidence showing Trump hoarded classified records at Mar-a-Lago after his tenure and hampered efforts by government agencies to retrieve them, Republicans in Congress, including GOP leadership, are leaping to Trump’s defense. They’re reciting his groundless narrative that he’s being politically targeted by investigators for being Biden’s opponent in the next presidential election.

Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (R-California) pledged to “hold this brazen weaponization of power accountable.” House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-Louisiana) dubbed the indictment a “sham,” asserting that “Joe Biden is weaponizing his Department of Justice against his own political rival.”

In a paradoxical turn, Trump promises to “go after” Biden if he wins the 2024 presidential election, further showcasing his hypocrisy.

Throughout his political career, Trump has displayed a propensity for weaponizing his position. He famously asked Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy for political ammunition against Biden before agreeing to offer aid, leading to one of his two impeachments.

Despite Trump’s cries of victimhood, legal experts affirm that the charges against him are solid. Norm Eisen, a senior fellow in governance studies at the Brookings Institution, recently tweeted, “Now that I have seen the indictment, I feel that way even more strongly… Trump will very likely be convicted.” As this narrative unfolds, one can only hope the truth holds its ground against a sea of misinformation.