December 2, 2020

Speculation swirls about Joe diGenova’s recent absence from Fox

Joe diGenova has not made an appearance on Fox News in almost a month, and fans are starting to wonder if the contributor has been banned.

The Trump booster’s disappearance appears to coincide with a controversial segment in November when DiGenova accused a witness in the impeachment inquiry of working for George Soros, progressive activist organization Media Matters for America reported. Soros called on Fox to fire diGenova for peddling “anti-Semitic” claims about the Hungarian-born billionaire.

DiGenova, Toensing missing from Fox

Media Matters notes that diGenova and his wife and fellow lawyer, Victoria Toensing, have not been on Fox Business since their Nov. 13 appearance on Lou Dobbs Tonight. DiGenova last appeared on Fox News with Laura Ingraham in October.

The spouses are fixtures on Fox’s opinion shows, and their time at the network hit a 2019 peak in September — which makes their sudden disappearance this month rather strange, as Media Matters, admittedly, makes a good point of noting. DiGenova has repeatedly gone to bat for President Trump during the Robert Mueller saga and its Ukrainian sequel, which is now reaching its climax in the House of Representatives.

DiGenova had claimed that Soros was influencing State Department witnesses who testified against President Trump, according to the Washington Examiner. Dobbs teed up that comment by suggesting that diplomat and witness George Kent was part of an effort to have Ukraine drop an investigation into Soros’s supposed “anti-corruption” group AntAc, citing the work of reporter John Solomon.

“There’s no doubt that George Soros controls a very large part of the career foreign service of the United States State Department. He also controls the activities of FBI agents overseas who work for [non-governmental organizations]. That was very evident in Ukraine. And Kent was part of that. He was a very big protector of Soros,” diGenova said.

A lawyer for Soros wrote a letter to Fox demanding that the network fire diGenova for making “anti-Semitic” accusations, citing its previous firing of Chris Farrell of Judicial Watch, who was canned after accusing Soros of bankrolling immigrant caravans heading to the southern border, according to USA Today. Soros has routinely dismissed criticism of his progressive fundraising activities as motivated by anti-Semitic bigotry.

Fired by stealth?

As Media Matters notes, Fox has been accused of sanctioning some of its contributors by stealth in the past. The network suspended Judge Jeannine Pirro, one of its most popular hosts, for two weeks in March after she made controversial comments about Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), according to The Hill.

Fox condemned Pirro’s statements, but never directly stated that she had been suspended. Trump himself then urged Fox to put Pirro — a supporter and friend — back on the air.

The network has not commented on the diGenova situation.

President Trump has criticized Fox for what he perceives as a drift leftward, often criticizing some of its more liberal anchors like Shepard Smith, whose recent vacancy was filled this week by Bill Hemmer. Trump called Fox News “pathetic” Sunday for hosting Democrats like Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) despite Democrats having barred Fox from covering their primary debates.

Some on the left have come to regard Fox News as a peddler of so-called “hate” that all Democrats should reject by boycotting the network. At her final debate before dropping out of the primary race, Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) criticized Tulsi Gabbard for her frequent appearances on Fox News, implying that they somehow rendered her then-competitor untrustworthy or disloyal.

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