As the satirical "Christian" site The Babylon Bee reports, "Upon the revelation that Sean Hannity had consulted with the same lawyer Donald Trump allegedly used to cover up an affair, the nation reported Tuesday it was concerned that the talk show host and political pundit might not be completely objective in his coverage of current events."
He is as far as the president is concerned, though, for Hannity, writes the Washington Post, "is one of the few people who gets patched immediately to Trump" — who of course is always on the lookout for smart, impartial takes on political reality. In the talk show host's frequent calls to Bedlam Central, continues the Post, the two discuss "ideas for Hannity’s show"; "what the president should tweet"; the p.r., demagogic need for Trump to "distance [himself] from Washington elites"; the indispensability of the president "trust[ing] the instincts that [Hannity] argues won Trump the White House"; the imperative of "keeping conservatives happy on immigration"; the joy of "venting about the Russia probe"; and scapegoating "senior Justice Department figures such as Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein."
In Trump's atrophied brain, Hannity has come to represent a sort of Clark Clifford, albeit one without any of the former wise man's extensive Washington experience. Since college, which he never completed, Hannity has done nothing but work as a talk show host; he is a mouth in unceasing action, nothing more. Nonetheless, the vacuous chief executive "is known to cite Hannity when he talks with White House advisers," who in turn have dejectedly acknowledged that the professional windbag is nothing less than the president's "shadow" chief of staff, observes the Post.
Indeed it seems Hannity has been crucial to Trump's turn, of late, from even attempting to appear presidential; to instead "return to the combative and television-infused style of his business career." Trump never did grasp the criticality of at least listening to professional, seasoned advice, thus he's now settling, quite comfortably, for the yammering rabble-rousing of a brownshirted broadcaster.
Hannity's celestial status may deeply dismay the president's official advisers, but according to Gabriel Sherman's reporting in Vanity Fair, Hannity's Fox News colleagues are downright despondent about the network primetimer's utter lack of journalistic ethics. The "revelation … that Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen’s three-person client roster includes Sean Hannity was shocking [in its absence of on-air disclosure], even to those inside Fox News," writes Sherman. "What the fuck? This is the most embarrassing thing I’ve ever seen," said one staffer to Sherman. "This is bad," said another. "It violates every rule of journalism."
Little did we know there was one left at Fox News. But in the network's alliance with Trump, the one remaining ethical rule was bound to be marked for extinction. To borrow from Hitch, Trump poisons everything.