Sunday September 23rd, 2018 7:57PM

Fox's Smith avoids story covered heavily by colleagues

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

NEW YORK (AP) — While Fox News Channel has spent hours talking about Hillary Clinton and an Obama-era uranium deal in recent weeks, its news anchor Shepard Smith avoided the story entirely.

Fresh evidence that Smith is an island unto himself at the news network came in research released Thursday by the liberal watchdog group Media Matters for America. During the three weeks starting Oct. 17, Fox News spent just under 12 hours talking about the Uranium One deal, with 29 percent of that time on opinion host Sean Hannity's prime-time show.

In recent weeks, the issue has been at the center of the nation's partisan divide. Hannity calls it "the real Russian conspiracy," while Democrats suggest the story is used to distract from news about Robert Mueller's investigation into President Donald Trump and ties to Russia. Conservatives contend that "mainstream" news outlets are obsessed with Mueller's investigation.

Republicans have called for a probe into the 2010 purchase of American uranium mines by a Russian-backed company, noting some of the company's investors had donated money to Clinton. The state department, then led by Clinton, was one of nine U.S. agencies with oversight of the deal, although she has said she wasn't involved. Trump has said the company's sale is a scandal on par with Watergate.

Trump's favorite morning show, "Fox & Friends," spent an hour and nine minutes talking about the deal, second only to Hannity on Fox, Media Matters said.

Smith's 3 p.m. weekday newscast didn't mention the story at all during the three weeks, except for two minutes on Oct. 27 — when Smith wasn't in and Trace Gallagher substituted for him.

Fox did not make Smith or the show's executive producer available for an interview on Thursday. The veteran newscaster is often criticized by Fox's more conservative viewers for reporting on views they disagree with.

"The base doesn't like Shepard Smith," said Tim Graham, director of media analysis at the conservative Media Research Center. "That would be a heck of a Christmas present — dump Shep, let MSNBC have him."

Fox News, in response, said Smith was "one of the most valued and talented journalists" at the network.

The Uranium One story came back in the news through stories in The Hill in October that the FBI was investigating whether Russia was trying to gain influence in the U.S. nuclear industry at the time the deal was being considered. The MRC said ABC and CBS spent a total of 4 minutes, 38 seconds on this story, and NBC News didn't cover it. The watchdog had no accounting for how much time CNN and MSNBC spent on the story, but said they were most likely to debunk it when it was brought up.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Entertainment, AP Online TV News, AP Business
© Copyright 2018
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
In a race against time, Ridley Scott cuts out Kevin Spacey
Hollywood director Ridley Scott intends to cut a disgraced Kevin Spacey out of his already completed movie, reshoot the actor's scenes and still make a release date just six weeks away
5:38PM ( 2 minutes ago )
Church shooting victims face many obstacles in court
Texas church shooting victims would face many obstacles in court
5:36PM ( 4 minutes ago )
Nevada execution in doubt with paralytic drug out
Nevada's first inmate execution in 11 years is in doubt after a state court judge ordered a paralytic drug removed from a never-before-used lethal injection plan
5:31PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Judge jails, sets bail for top lawmaker in Catalonia probe
Spanish judge jails Catalonia's top lawmaker in rebellion probe stemming from an independence declaration, sets bail at $175,000
5:11PM ( 29 minutes ago )
Industrial and tech stocks fall on potential tax cut delay
US stocks slide after Senate Republicans propose delaying a cut in corporate tax rates for a year
4:58PM ( 41 minutes ago )
GOP leaders bolt from Senate candidate Moore after sex claim
GOP leaders bolt from Senate candidate Roy Moore after the former Alabama judge is accused of having sexual contact decades ago with a girl of 14
4:48PM ( 51 minutes ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
Report: 5 women accuse Louis C.K. of sexual misconduct
Comedian Louis C.K. is accused of sexual misconduct, including masturbating in front of them, in a New York Times report
4:37PM ( 1 hour ago )
The Latest: Distributor reviewing Louis C.K. film release
Distributor reviewing release of Louis C.K. film
4:22PM ( 1 hour ago )
Disney hopes for its next blockbuster in newest 'Star Wars'
Disney's $4 billion deal for Lucasfilm and "Star Wars" just keeps getting better for the House of Mouse
4:13PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Entertainment
Will it be AT&T vs the government in $85B Time Warner deal?
AT&T now says it's "uncertain" when its $85 billion Time Warner purchase will close
7:13PM ( 22 hours ago )
AT&T deal delay? Reports say gov't wants TV properties sold
AT&T now says it's "uncertain" when its $85 billion Time Warner purchase will close
3:55PM ( 1 day ago )
'Friends' star Aniston makes TV return with Witherspoon
"Friends" star Jennifer Aniston is coming back to TV and she's partnering with Reese Witherspoon
3:52PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Online TV News
NFL expects Goodell contract extension to be finalized soon
The NFL expects a five-year contract extension with Commissioner Roger Goodell to be finalized soon despite a threatened lawsuit by Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones
4:13PM ( 1 hour ago )
Zuckerberg nears end of US tour, wants to boost small biz
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg toured the US, to discover that he wants to help out small businesses
4:08PM ( 1 hour ago )
Tech stocks fall as potential tax cut delay pressures stocks
US stocks are down as technology and industrial companies fall after Senate Republicans say they may delay their proposed cut in corporate tax rates for a year
3:14PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Business
Nevada execution in doubt with paralytic drug out
Nevada's first inmate execution in 11 years is in doubt after a state court judge ordered a paralytic drug removed from a never-before-used lethal injection plan
5:31PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Rian Johnson to create new 'Star Wars' trilogy
The Walt Disney Co. has announced that Rian Johnson will create a new trilogy for the "Star Wars" universe, greatly expanding the director's command over George Lucas' ever-expanding space saga
5:26PM ( 14 minutes ago )
Minnesota state senator accused of sexually harassing women
A Democratic state senator from Minnesota is facing calls to resign amid allegations that he sexually harassed several women involved in state politics
5:23PM ( 17 minutes ago )
Senate GOP tax bill would delay biz cut, undo deductions
The Senate unveils its version of the Republicans' high-stakes tax overhaul with billions in tax cuts for people and corporations and repeal of the federal deduction for state and local taxes.
5:21PM ( 19 minutes ago )
Syria deal in the works ahead of likely Trump-Putin meeting
The United States and Russia are nearing an agreement on arrangements in Syria as the Islamic State group nears defeat
5:17PM ( 23 minutes ago )