Months after losing at least five blue-chip advertisers for trumpeting a discredited conspiracy theory that implicated the Clintons in the murder of Democratic Party staffer Seth Rich, Fox News’ marquee star Sean Hannity has outraged his many critics on the left yet again.
Speaking on his talk radio show last week, Hannity appeared to imply that a woman who accused Republican Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore of sexually assaulting her at the age of 14 consented to the encounter. He told the audience on Hannity, the top-rated cable news show, that he misspoke, saying, that he was referring to two other women who were 17 and 18 at the time they allege Moore tried to woo them. The age of consent in Alabama is 16, so Hannity may be legally correct, though such nuances may be lost on advertisers, who, according to the liberal media watchdog Media Matters for America (MMFA), are increasingly leery of Hannity, who hosts the top-rated news show on cable television.
“If you are a media buyer, you are trying to get your clients ads in front of as many people as you can for as good of a buck,” said MMFA President Angelo Carusone, who has called for a boycott of Hannity’s advertisers, in an interview. “You want to avoid controversies. He demonstrated that he was enormously volatile. It sent a lot of reverberations through the media buying space.”
Some Hannity advertisers do appear to be getting skittish. According to media reports, Keurig Green Mountain Coffee and Realtor.com have quit advertising on Hannity’s show in the wake of his defense of Moore. Though there are no signs of a mass advertiser defection like what happened to Bill O’Reilly, data from ad monitoring services iSpot TV and Standard Media Index suggest that the MMFA boycott, which Hannity has denounced as “liberal fascism,” is having an impact.
According to iSpot TV, Hannity’s Hannity program earned $153.5 million in advertising revenue so far this year as of October 31. That trails Tucker Carlson…
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