Fox News Employees Split Over Sean Hannity Disclosure: ‘I’m F-ing Livid’ to ‘It’s a Nothing Burger’

Fox News employees are divided over the news that Sean Hannity had been named as a client of Donald Trump personal attorney Michael Cohen even as the primetime star downplayed the nature of their professional connection — with one staffer calling the story “a nothing burger” and another suggesting the host may have violated company guidelines.

“I’m f—ing livid,” one senior channel staffer told TheWrap Wednesday over Hannity’s failure to disclose the relationship in his on-air discussions about Cohen, who has been at the center of many a news story in recent months. The staffer also voiced disappointment that the network has not sent any communication to employees over the issue.

“We’re left to reading press reports to find out what’s going on, what the company knew about this potential conflict of interest and what it is doing to investigate Sean Hannity’s public claims,” the staffer said.

Also Read: That Time Hannity Torched George Stephanopoulos for Not Disclosing a Clinton Foundation Donation

The same individual also said Hannity’s conduct appeared to be in violation of acceptable behavior found within Fox News employee handbook, which reads in part:

“Conflicts between your private interests and the legitimate business interests of this Company generally arise when your personal interests or affiliations run counter to your responsibilities at work … You should not improperly use your position or resources of the Company in order to benefit yourself, your relatives, your friends or other businesses.”

Both Fox News and 21st Century Fox did not immediately respond to inquiries over whether Hannity had run afoul of company rules.

Other Fox News employees met the Hannity disclosure with a shrug. “Do I care personally? F— no,” one on-air talent told TheWrap. “Sean Hannity is still the No. 1 player in all of Fox shows. This isn’t such an egregious act that he would be fired. He’s not a journalist.”

“If this was something really serious, if they go in and find out something else — if there was a payment or something salacious or borderline illegal — I think that’s when it becomes a very, very big deal,” the individual added.

Also Read: Colbert Completely Loses It Over Hannity-Cohen Shocker: ‘Who Did Sean Hannity Have Sex With?’ (Video)

“A lot of the talk in the newsroom was kind of like poking fun at CNN’s complete obsession [with the story],” a third network staffer told TheWrap, adding that Fox News overseer Rupert Murdoch seemed unlikely to discipline its top star especially with another primetime host, Laura Ingraham, enduring an advertiser boycott over a tweet about high school anti-gun-violence activist David Hogg.

“There was talk that [Rupert] Murdoch didn’t like the way the Laura Ingraham situation was handled,” the staffer said. “Murdoch likes to be tough. When I heard that, I assumed Hannity was going to get a pass.”

On Tuesday, Fox News issued a statement that the company had been “surprised” by Hannity’s “informal relationship” with Cohen but that “he continues to have our full support.”

Also Read: Alan Dershowitz Chides Sean Hannity to His Face Over Michael Cohen Connection (Video)

Still, Hannity has faced heat from some colleagues, including network analyst Alan Dershowitz, who handed Hannity a public rebuke on his Hannity’s own show Monday evening.

“I do want to say that I really think that you should have disclosed your relationship with Cohen when you talked about him on this show,” the Harvard law professor chided. “You could have said just that you had asked him for advice or whatever, but I think it would have been much, much better had you disclosed that relationship.”

Cohen has served as Donald Trump’s attorney fixer for a decade and according to the disclosure in federal court Monday also represented two other clients, Sean Hannity and former Republican National Committee Finance Chairman Elliott Broidy.

While Hannity has insisted his consultations with Cohen were limited and confined to real estate matters, the Trump attorney was directly involved in facilitating cash payments to women who have accused both Trump and Broidy of sexual affairs.

 

Related stories from TheWrap:

That Time Hannity Torched George Stephanopoulos for Not Disclosing a Clinton Foundation Donation

Fox News ‘Surprised’ by Hannity’s Ties to Trump’s Lawyer, Stands by Him Anyway

Alan Dershowitz Chides Sean Hannity to His Face Over Michael Cohen Connection (Video)

‘Morning Joe’ Nukes Sean Hannity Over Michael Cohen Disclosure: ‘Bold-Faced Lying to His Viewers’ (Video)

Fox News employees are divided over the news that Sean Hannity had been named as a client of Donald Trump personal attorney Michael Cohen even as the primetime star downplayed the nature of their professional connection — with one staffer calling the story “a nothing burger” and another suggesting the host may have violated company guidelines.

“I’m f—ing livid,” one senior channel staffer told TheWrap Wednesday over Hannity’s failure to disclose the relationship in his on-air discussions about Cohen, who has been at the center of many a news story in recent months. The staffer also voiced disappointment that the network has not sent any communication to employees over the issue.

“We’re left to reading press reports to find out what’s going on, what the company knew about this potential conflict of interest and what it is doing to investigate Sean Hannity’s public claims,” the staffer said.

The same individual also said Hannity’s conduct appeared to be in violation of acceptable behavior found within Fox News employee handbook, which reads in part:

“Conflicts between your private interests and the legitimate business interests of this Company generally arise when your personal interests or affiliations run counter to your responsibilities at work … You should not improperly use your position or resources of the Company in order to benefit yourself, your relatives, your friends or other businesses.”

Both Fox News and 21st Century Fox did not immediately respond to inquiries over whether Hannity had run afoul of company rules.

Other Fox News employees met the Hannity disclosure with a shrug. “Do I care personally? F— no,” one on-air talent told TheWrap. “Sean Hannity is still the No. 1 player in all of Fox shows. This isn’t such an egregious act that he would be fired. He’s not a journalist.”

“If this was something really serious, if they go in and find out something else — if there was a payment or something salacious or borderline illegal — I think that’s when it becomes a very, very big deal,” the individual added.

“A lot of the talk in the newsroom was kind of like poking fun at CNN’s complete obsession [with the story],” a third network staffer told TheWrap, adding that Fox News overseer Rupert Murdoch seemed unlikely to discipline its top star especially with another primetime host, Laura Ingraham, enduring an advertiser boycott over a tweet about high school anti-gun-violence activist David Hogg.

“There was talk that [Rupert] Murdoch didn’t like the way the Laura Ingraham situation was handled,” the staffer said. “Murdoch likes to be tough. When I heard that, I assumed Hannity was going to get a pass.”

On Tuesday, Fox News issued a statement that the company had been “surprised” by Hannity’s “informal relationship” with Cohen but that “he continues to have our full support.”

Still, Hannity has faced heat from some colleagues, including network analyst Alan Dershowitz, who handed Hannity a public rebuke on his Hannity’s own show Monday evening.

“I do want to say that I really think that you should have disclosed your relationship with Cohen when you talked about him on this show,” the Harvard law professor chided. “You could have said just that you had asked him for advice or whatever, but I think it would have been much, much better had you disclosed that relationship.”

Cohen has served as Donald Trump’s attorney fixer for a decade and according to the disclosure in federal court Monday also represented two other clients, Sean Hannity and former Republican National Committee Finance Chairman Elliott Broidy.

While Hannity has insisted his consultations with Cohen were limited and confined to real estate matters, the Trump attorney was directly involved in facilitating cash payments to women who have accused both Trump and Broidy of sexual affairs.

 

Related stories from TheWrap:

That Time Hannity Torched George Stephanopoulos for Not Disclosing a Clinton Foundation Donation

Fox News 'Surprised' by Hannity's Ties to Trump's Lawyer, Stands by Him Anyway

Alan Dershowitz Chides Sean Hannity to His Face Over Michael Cohen Connection (Video)

'Morning Joe' Nukes Sean Hannity Over Michael Cohen Disclosure: 'Bold-Faced Lying to His Viewers' (Video)

Live Streaming Service FuboTV Raises $75 Million

Live streaming service FuboTV has raised $75 million in Series D funding, attracting a group of investors that includes AMC Networks, 21st Century Fox, Sky and the former Scripps Networks Interactive, which is now part of Discovery.
This investment round brings the total amount raised by FuboTV to $150 million, money the New York-based startup has invested in building out a sports-focused subscription service that got its start in 2015 live-streaming soccer games.
“This…

Live streaming service FuboTV has raised $75 million in Series D funding, attracting a group of investors that includes AMC Networks, 21st Century Fox, Sky and the former Scripps Networks Interactive, which is now part of Discovery. This investment round brings the total amount raised by FuboTV to $150 million, money the New York-based startup has invested in building out a sports-focused subscription service that got its start in 2015 live-streaming soccer games. “This…

Fox News, Surprised by Hannity Ties to Trump Lawyer, Will Support Host

Fox News Channel executives said they would give primetime host Sean Hannity the network’s “full support” despite being blindsided by news that he may have had a business relationship with Michael Cohen, the controversial Trump Organization attorney, that he did not disclose even as he offered commentary on the network about current events involving the […]

Fox News Channel executives said they would give primetime host Sean Hannity the network’s “full support” despite being blindsided by news that he may have had a business relationship with Michael Cohen, the controversial Trump Organization attorney, that he did not disclose even as he offered commentary on the network about current events involving the […]

Disney’s Bob Iger Tells Vogue Magazine Fox Deal Eclipsed Presidential Run

A lengthy Vogue profile of Disney CEO Bob Iger incorporates, of course, ample notes and quotes about his sartorial preference for business casual. But it also fleshes out parts of his background and world view that don’t often get as much ink.
“The status quo, to me, is a joke,” Iger emphasizes, referring to multiple aspects of his stewardship of the company. Given his support for Democratic causes, the quote also has a political dimension. He tells writer Rob Haskell…

A lengthy Vogue profile of Disney CEO Bob Iger incorporates, of course, ample notes and quotes about his sartorial preference for business casual. But it also fleshes out parts of his background and world view that don’t often get as much ink. “The status quo, to me, is a joke,” Iger emphasizes, referring to multiple aspects of his stewardship of the company. Given his support for Democratic causes, the quote also has a political dimension. He tells writer Rob Haskell…

Disney Must Make Offer to Buy All of Sky If Fox’s Own Deal Falls Through

Should Fox’s deal to purchase Sky PLC fall through but Disney’s acquisition of Fox consummate, Disney is required to make a mandatory offer for all of Sky, a U.K. takeover panel has ruled. That is, unless Comcast or another third party acquires a majority stake in Sky beforehand.

The Mouse House will have 28 days within the close of its $52.4 billion acquisition of much of Fox’s movie and TV business to make an offer for Sky, the panel said, adding that the offer must be at £10.75 (or $15.26) in cash for each ordinary share in Sky.

Look familiar? That was the price per share at which Fox announced a recommended pre-conditional cash offer for Sky on December 15, 2016.

Also Read: Would Shari Redstone Really Replace CBS Chief Les Moonves With Bob Bakish?

“The basis for this ruling is… securing control of Sky might reasonably be considered to be a significant purpose of Disney’s acquiring control of Fox,” per the panel’s statement.

Disney, Fox and Sky have each accepted these rulings, the takeover panel said.

Fox, which already owns a portion of Sky, has been trying to buy the whole thing for a while now. In late February, however, Comcast swooped in with a $31 billion offer for the European media giant.

Disney’s acquisition of most of 21st Century Fox’s assets (save news, sports and the broadcast network, basically) is expected to close within about a year.

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Should Fox’s deal to purchase Sky PLC fall through but Disney’s acquisition of Fox consummate, Disney is required to make a mandatory offer for all of Sky, a U.K. takeover panel has ruled. That is, unless Comcast or another third party acquires a majority stake in Sky beforehand.

The Mouse House will have 28 days within the close of its $52.4 billion acquisition of much of Fox’s movie and TV business to make an offer for Sky, the panel said, adding that the offer must be at £10.75 (or $15.26) in cash for each ordinary share in Sky.

Look familiar? That was the price per share at which Fox announced a recommended pre-conditional cash offer for Sky on December 15, 2016.

“The basis for this ruling is… securing control of Sky might reasonably be considered to be a significant purpose of Disney’s acquiring control of Fox,” per the panel’s statement.

Disney, Fox and Sky have each accepted these rulings, the takeover panel said.

Fox, which already owns a portion of Sky, has been trying to buy the whole thing for a while now. In late February, however, Comcast swooped in with a $31 billion offer for the European media giant.

Disney’s acquisition of most of 21st Century Fox’s assets (save news, sports and the broadcast network, basically) is expected to close within about a year.

Related stories from TheWrap:

Donnie Yen Joins the Cast of Disney's Live-Action 'Mulan'

Disney Stumps Internet by Sharing 'When You're Dead Inside' Meme With Pinocchio

Disney Streaming Service Developing 'High Fidelity' Series

Disney Will Be Forced To Acquire All Of Sky If Fox’s Takeover Of UK Pay Net Is Not Complete Before Mega-Deal

Disney will be forced to acquire all of Sky if 21st Century Fox‘s takeover of the UK pay-TV broadcaster is not complete prior to the Mouse House’s takeover of the rival Hollywood studio.
The UK’s Panel on Takeovers and Mergers made the ruling on Thursday morning and the three companies have accepted it.
Disney will have 28 days from the completion of its $66B acquisition of Fox to make a £10.25 ($US15) offer for all the shares of Sky if Fox’s own $15.7B takeover of Sky is…

Disney will be forced to acquire all of Sky if 21st Century Fox's takeover of the UK pay-TV broadcaster is not complete prior to the Mouse House's takeover of the rival Hollywood studio. The UK's Panel on Takeovers and Mergers made the ruling on Thursday morning and the three companies have accepted it. Disney will have 28 days from the completion of its $66B acquisition of Fox to make a £10.25 ($US15) offer for all the shares of Sky if Fox's own $15.7B takeover of Sky is…

Disney Required to Offer to Buy All Sky Shares if Fox Bid Fails

Disney will be required to make an offer to purchase all Sky shares if 21st Century Fox’s bid to acquire the remaining 61% of the satcaster is not approved prior to completion of Disney’s acquisition of Fox, the British Panel on Takeovers and Mergers has ruled. The independent body ruled Thursday that The Walt Disney […]

Disney will be required to make an offer to purchase all Sky shares if 21st Century Fox’s bid to acquire the remaining 61% of the satcaster is not approved prior to completion of Disney’s acquisition of Fox, the British Panel on Takeovers and Mergers has ruled. The independent body ruled Thursday that The Walt Disney […]