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Sean Hannity has been a staple on Fox News for over 20 years. After the ousting of Bill O’Reilly, Hannity became the most popular host on the conservative network. As a political commentator and conspiracy theorist, Hannity is no stranger to controversy.
Hannity has been known to make inflammatory statements that shocked viewers in the past. Let’s take a quick look at the most shocking things Hannity has ever said or done, including the tragic death he turned into a conspiracy theory (page 7)!
16. He used fake footage
It’s obvious that Hannity enjoys seeing what he wants to see and ignoring facts. When discussing a Michele Bachmann health care protest, Hannity used crowd footage from Glenn Beck’s 9/12 rally to make the attendance look better.
When Jon Stewart so eloquently pointed out the fake news on The Daily Show, Hannity claimed he’d made an “inadvertent mistake.”
Next: Did your taxes really go up 30%?
15. He created tax hysteria
He made false claims about taxes. | Fox News
Hannity was obviously no fan of President Obama. During Obama’s second campaign, Hannity falsely claimed that taxes would go up 30% if Obama were elected again.
He used a report from the Congressional Budget Office, but also failed to reiterate that the increase could only happen if the government allowed the tax cuts that happened under Bush’s term to expire.
Next: When his show looks more like Jerry Springer
14. He made outrageously sexist comments
Sometimes saying nothing is Hannity’s worst quality. In the past, he let outrageous moments happen on his show without checking them.
In June 2013, he watched as right-wing radio host Bill Cunningham berated and harassed commentator Tamara Holder during a discussion about former Attorney General Eric Holder. Thrusting his finger into her face, Cunnigham screamed, “Shut up. Know your role and shut your mouth. What, are you going to cry?”
Next: Hannity ends up in the same boat as Glenn Beck.
13. He told some flat-out lies
He states his opinions as if they are facts. | Kevin Winter/Getty Images
Despite the fact that Fox News’ Glenn Beck had already been called out for lying about White House science and technology adviser John Holdren by saying that he “advocated compulsory abortion,” Hannity decided to double down on the statement.
Facts are a thing, but apparently, he doesn’t know that.
Next: Riots and pitchforks
12. He advocated violence
He has promoted violence as a means of defense. | Paul Zimmerman/Getty Images
Being a conservative is one thing, but Hannity has openly advocated violence on his show.
In 2009, he said, “Here you are, you’re a liberal, probably define peace as the absence of conflict. I define peace as the ability to defend yourself and blow your enemies into smithereens.”
Next: Does Halloween teach children to beg?
11. He stated Halloween teaches ‘children to beg’
Sean Hannity confessed to using fake footage after Jon Stewart called him out. | Comedy Central
Apparently, people (children in particular) can’t even enjoy a harmless holiday like Halloween. At least not if Hannity has anything to say about it.
Back in 2007, the Fox News host said, “Halloween is a liberal holiday because we’re teaching our children to beg for something for free. … We’re teaching kids to knock on other people’s doors and ask for a handout.”
Next: Fake news
10. He (hypocritically) accused liberals of being ‘mean’ and ‘cruel’
Sean Hannity has hypocritically accused liberals of being mean. | Fox News
If there is one thing President Trump has advocated for and brought out in some conservatives, it is mean and vicious bullying.
Therefore many viewers were positively dumbfounded when Hannity said with a straight face, “[Liberal rhetoric] now is so over the top, it’s so vicious, it’s so mean, it’s so cruel, and I don’t hear this coming from conservatives about liberals.”
Next: An astounding ego
9. He arrogantly boasted of his power at Fox
He is vocal about his own freedom of speech. | Michael Kamm/Getty Images
Hannity’s arrogance is unparalleled, and that would be fine if he were a reality TV star of some sort. However, to call himself a news host who doesn’t have to follow the rules of journalism is just insane.
Earlier this year, in an interview with The Huffington Post, he said, “Nobody tells me what to say on my show. They never have and frankly, they never will. I’m not that type of person you can say, ‘Go on air and say this.’ That’s been the beauty of Fox News all these years. They leave me alone.”
Next: Offending the LGBTQ community
8. He attacked the LGBTQ community
Though Hannity didn’t actually make these comments, he allowed Ben Carson to come on his show and spew nonsense while attacking the LGBTQ community in 2013. Carson came on Hannity and said,
Well, my thoughts are that marriage is between a man and a woman. It’s a well-established, fundamental pillar of society and no group — be they gays, be they NAMBLA, be they people who believe in bestiality — it doesn’t matter what they are, they don’t get to change the definition. So he, it’s not something that is against gays, it’s against anybody who wants to come along and change the fundamental definitions of pillars of society. It has significant ramifications.
In the past, Hannity has also urged parents to tell their kids “being gay is not normal.”
Next: Using a tragedy for views
7. He turned a tragic death into a conspiracy theory
People were appalled when Sean Hannity turned a tragedy into a conspiracy theory. | Fox News
Hannity is so deplorable that he turned the death of Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich into a conspiracy theory. He claimed the slain man contacted WikiLeaks before getting shot and killed in Washington, D.C.
Fox News ultimately decided to retract the story with Hannity saying he would stop discussing the story, “out of respect for the family’s wishes, for now.”
Next: He’s loyal to a fault.
6. He justified Trump’s actions
Sean Hannity has justified his friend’s actions many times. | Fox News
Despite riding with him during the election, many conservatives (even those working at Fox News) are currently disappointed with Trump and how he’s running the country. But Hannity is still sticking by his side.
When Trump attacked a Muslim Gold Star family during the 2016 election, Hannity justified his friend’s actions and even asked Trump why the family was attacking him.
Next: The shocking person he decided to defend.
5. He defended a footballer accused of child abuse
Sean Hannity doesn’t disagree with controversial methods of child rearing. | Rick Diamond/Getty Images
In 2014, police arrested Minnesota Vikings player Adrian Peterson for beating his child, much to the horror of many people across the country. Not only did Hannity defend him, but he also took off his belt on air and began whacking it to demonstrate how he was hit as a child. He said,
I got hit with a strap, bam, bam, bam, and I’ve never been to a shrink, by my father. I would tell you I deserved it. I think he went too far, but I don’t want to see this guy get a felony, I don’t want to see this guy lose his job, I don’t want to see this guy — he deserves parenting classes.
Next: Shouldering the birther movement
4. He fanned the flames of the birther movement
He was skeptical about Obama’s birth certificate. | Kevin Winter/Getty Images
After President Obama won the 2008 election, conservatives desperately clung to the birther movement. Despite the fact that Obama had shown his birth certificate several times, Hannity ignored it and continued to say that the president grew up in Kenya.
Next: Blaming the government for tragedies
3. He praised a conspiracy theorist who questioned the events of 9/11
He supports unproven conspiracy theories. | Paul Zimmerman/Getty Images
Hannity was delighted to praise conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, telling him he was doing a great job after he claimed that the United States government committed the 9/11 terror attacks and the Sandy Hook massacre.
Next: Birth control hater
2. He attacked women for asking for birth control
He didn’t find bullying familiar at all. | Dimitrios Kambouris/iStock/Getty Images
It’s clear that Hannity is no fan of women. He’s even been accused of sexual harassment.
He’s also against birth control. He said, “I won’t have sex, but I’ll be paying for the birth control, not fair.”
Next: Tangling with the Pope
1. He denounced the Pope
He thinks he knows better than the Pope himself. | Rob Kim/Stringer
It’s no surprise that Hannity has repeatedly attacked Muslims, but he’s also attacked the Pope. He said that Pope Francis is “not really in a position … to lecture anybody on what it means to be good Christians.”
Follow Aramide Tinubu on Twitter @midnightrami.
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