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Media Matters Falsely Claims Hannity Advised Mueller’s Witnesses To Smash Their Phones

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Sean Hannity was deliberately taken out of context and smeared by the media for comments he made on his show over the Mueller investigation. Media Matters edited his comments to make it seem as if Hannity was calling for witnesses to destroy evidence.

Media Matters for America’s Senior Researcher Andrew Lawrence tweeted, “Tonight Hannity is freaking out about Mueller searching encrypted apps and ‘advised’ all Mueller witnesses to ‘bash’ their phones ‘into itsy bitsy pieces.'” That tweet was retweeted thousands of time and the media and the left ran with it. It has prompted stories in Rolling Stone, Mediaite, the Daily Beast, Business Insider, The Hill and Newsweek.

There’s only one problem… it’s a total lie. Here’s what Hannity actually said:

“HANNITY: This is interesting—they are demanding that witnesses turn in their phones so team Mueller and, of course, his pit bull Andrew Weissmann and Jeannie Rhee, who worked for Clinton, get to review all of their electronic communications. He wants the phones turned over even texts that are on what are called encrypted apps like WhatsApp or Signal or one of these things.”

“Maybe Mueller’s witnesses, I don’t know. If I advise them to follow Hillary Clinton’s lead, delete all your emails and then acid-wash the emails and hard drives on the new phones, then take your phones and bash them with a hammer into little itsy-bitsy pieces, use BleachBit, remove the SIM cards, and then take the pieces and hand it over to Robert Mueller and say, ‘Hillary Rodham Clinton, this is equal justice under the law,’ how do you think that would work out for everybody who Mueller is demanding their phones of tonight?”

“I’m certain the result would not be the same as Hillary’s.”

That’s sarcasm and they know it. Notice how Media Matters omitted the part of that transcript that makes it obviously tongue-in-cheek. Hannity is not saying to do those things in regards to the Mueller investigation. He’s actually saying the exact opposite, because unlike Hillary Clinton, they’d face serious legal consequences. Hannity made the same point two more times later in his show. The first time he made clear it was a joke, the second time he threw the idea up rhetorically to a guest so he could rebuff it.

“HANNITY: Mueller wants everyone’s cell phones. My advice to them, not really, kidding, bad advice would be, follow, Hillary [sic], you know, lead.”

“FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR SARA CARTER: Absolutely.”

“FOX NEWS LEGAL ANALYST GREGG JARRETT: Yes.”

“HANNITY: To lead them acid wash them, bust them out and take out the SIM cards and here little pieces, here Mr. Mueller, here, I’m following Hillary’s lead.”

“HANNITY: And as I said, now that Robert Mueller wants everybody’s phones in case they used one of these applications I guess, you know, WhatsApp, or whatever you call this stuff, so he wants all this information and interestingly, he wants it and I wonder if everybody that has phones if they did when Hillary did and that’s delete the emails, delete the app, acid-washed the phone, break it up to the little bits and take the SIM cards out, how would that work out for all the people Robert Mueller’s requesting phones from?”

“DIGENOVA: If they have done any of those steps that you just identified, they would have obstructed justice and we would be subject to prosecution.”

Lawrence eventually tweeted out the video showing the second exchange where Hannity was joking. It got very few retweets. This was a political media hit job on Hannity by Media Matters pure and simple. But they weren’t alone, as Ben Shapiro highlighted, here are other headlines:

  • GQ: Sean Hannity Encourages Mueller Witnesses To Do Even More Crimes Than They May Already Have Committed
  • The Washington Post: Galaxy Brain Sean Hannity Advises Mueller Targets To Smash Their Cell Phones
  • The Washington Post: Hannity’s Phone-Smashing Rhetoric Heads In A Different Direction
  • Salon: ‘Acid Wash The Emails!’: Sean Hannity Urges Russia Witnesses To Destroy Evidence Live on Fox News

Shapiro pointed out the obvious, “He was making a relatively obvious point: the FBI seemed just fine with Hillary Clinton’s team smashing emails, supposedly in keeping with government protocols, but they are meticulous about demanding encrypted messaging from witnesses in the Mueller probe.” That’s exactly right. Hannity was pointing out the double standard under the law concerning how Democrats versus Republicans are treated. His verbiage was deliberately taken out of context by the leftist media. Same old, same old.

SOURCES: The Washington Free Beacon, The Daily Wire, Independent Journal Review, TheBlaze, Breitbart, The Right Scoop, Chicks on the Right, Legal Insurrection, Twitchy, The Daily Caller, Mediaite

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