CNN’s Trump Indictment Stress Test

How will Fox, facing a potential $1.6 billion legal bill, navigate the Trump indictment drama?
How will Fox News, facing a potential $1.6 billion legal bill, navigate the coming Trump indictment drama? Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Just as Fox News is attempting to overcome its Dominion-induced, post-Trump hangover, the former president has been thrust back to the forefront of the media cycle amid news that he may be indicted as soon as tomorrow. How will the network, which faces a potential $1.6 billion legal bill, navigate the latest drama? Will Republicans gravitate back to Chris Licht’s new, moderate-ish CNN after its own post-Trump makeover? And did the YoungkinPence town halls rate? All that and more with my colleague Dylan Byers, below the fold.

Tara: Dylan, how do you think the networks and cable news channels will cover this incoming Trump indictment, assuming that the Manhattan District Attorney actually charges him tomorrow? Will Fox News give Trump the full victim treatment, like they did after the F.B.I. raid on Mar-a-Lago, and welcome a chorus of Republicans to echo his belief that this is a political witch hunt? 

Dylan: You’re hitting on a very important question, Tara, which is: What is Fox’s posture toward Trump in a post-Jan. 6, post-Dominion, and possibly post-indictment landscape? The recent Dominion filings revealed that Fox’s leadership and its top primetime anchors were willing to suppress their personal antipathy toward the president in order to stay on the right side of his base for the sake of the business. But that hasn’t always required a full-throated defense of Trump, himself. More often than not, you’ll see Tucker Carlson, Laura Ingraham and Sean Hannity criticize his opponents or portray him as a victim of a left-wing or establishment conspiracy.