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Fox News, Once Home to Trump, Now Often Ignores Him


It’s been greater than 100 days since Donald J. Trump was interviewed on Fox News.

The network, which is owned by Rupert Murdoch and boosted Mr. Trump’s ascension from real estate developer and reality television star to the White House, is now often bypassing him in favor of showcasing other Republicans.

In the previous president’s view, in response to two individuals who have spoken to him recently, Fox’s ignoring him is an affront far worse than running stories and commentary that he has complained are “too negative.” The network is effectively displacing him from his favorite spot: the middle of the news cycle.

On July 22, as Mr. Trump was rallying supporters in Arizona and teasing the opportunity of running for president in 2024, saying “We could have to do it again,” Fox News selected not to indicate the event — the identical approach it has taken for nearly all of his rallies this 12 months. As a substitute, the network aired Laura Ingraham’s interview with a possible rival for the 2024 Republican nomination, Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida. It was the primary of two prime-time interviews Fox aired with Mr. DeSantis within the span of 5 days; he appeared on Tucker Carlson’s show shortly after talking to Ms. Ingraham.

When Mr. Trump spoke to a gathering of conservatives in Washington this week, Fox didn’t air the speech live. It as an alternative showed a number of clips after he was done speaking. That very same day, it did broadcast live — for 17 minutes — a speech by former Vice President Mike Pence.

Mr. Trump has complained recently to aides that even Sean Hannity, his friend of 20 years, doesn’t appear to be paying him much attention anymore, one one that spoke to him recalled.

The snubs aren’t coincidental, in response to several people near Mr. Murdoch’s Fox Corporation who spoke on the condition of anonymity to debate the corporate’s operations. This month, The Recent York Post and The Wall Street Journal, each owned by Mr. Murdoch, published blistering editorials about Mr. Trump’s actions regarding the Jan. 6, 2021, riot on the Capitol.

The skepticism toward the previous president extends to the best levels of the corporate, in response to two individuals with knowledge of the pondering of Mr. Murdoch, the chairman, and his son Lachlan, the chief executive. It also reflects concerns that Republicans in Washington, like Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the minority leader, have expressed to the Murdochs in regards to the potential harm Mr. Trump could cause to the party’s probabilities in upcoming elections, especially its odds of taking control of the Senate.

The Murdochs’ discomfort with Mr. Trump stems from his refusal to just accept his election loss, in response to two people acquainted with those conversations, and is usually in sync with the views of Republicans, like Mr. McConnell, who mostly supported the previous president but way back said the election was settled and condemned his efforts to overturn it.

One person acquainted with the Murdochs’ pondering said they remained insistent that Fox News had made the precise call when its decision desk projected that Joseph R. Biden would win Arizona just after 11 p.m. on the night of the election — a move that infuriated Mr. Trump and short-circuited his try to prematurely declare victory. This person said Lachlan Murdoch had privately described the choice desk’s call, which got here days before other networks concluded that Mr. Trump had lost the state, as something only Fox “had the courage and science to do.”

The previous president stays a potent force in Republican politics.

A few of the people acknowledged that Fox’s current approach to Mr. Trump may very well be temporary. If Mr. Trump pronounces he’s running for president, or if he’s indicted, he’ll warrant more coverage, they said.

A spokesman for Mr. McConnell declined to comment. A spokesman for the Fox Corporation also declined to comment, as did a spokeswoman for Mr. Trump.

The connection between Mr. Trump and the Murdoch media empire has long been complicated — an arrangement of mutual convenience and mistrust that has had sensational ups and downs since Mr. Trump first talked himself onto the gossip pages of The Recent York Post within the Eighties.

However the spat between the previous president and the media baron who has helped set the Republican Party’s agenda for a long time is going on in a much larger and more fragmented media landscape, as latest personalities and platforms make it much harder for anybody outlet to vary the narrative. Mr. Trump’s allies within the corners of the conservative media which are more loyal to him — including Breitbart, Newsmax and talk radio — are already seizing on the turn inside Fox as evidence of a betrayal.

Mr. Trump appears willing to fight. He blasted “Fox & Friends” this week on his social media service, Truth Social, for being “terrible” and having “gone to the ‘dark side’” after one among its hosts had mentioned that Mr. DeSantis had beat Mr. Trump in two recent polls of a hypothetical 2024 Republican primary contest. Then, offering no evidence, he blamed Paul Ryan, the previous Republican speaker of the House, with whom he often clashed. Mr. Ryan sits on the Fox Corporation’s board of directors.

The Post was often on Mr. Trump’s side in its editorials when he was president. However it occasionally went against him, like when Mr. Trump refused to concede the election in 2020 and the paper’s front-page headline blared: “Mr. President, STOP THE INSANITY.

Mr. Trump found a house on Fox News when the network’s founder, Roger Ailes, gave him a weekly slot on “Fox & Friends” in 2011. Mr. Trump used the platform to attach with the budding Tea Party movement as he thrashed establishment Republicans like Mr. Ryan and spread a lie in regards to the authenticity of President Barack Obama’s birth certificate.

Initially, neither Mr. Ailes nor Mr. Murdoch considered Mr. Trump as a serious presidential candidate. Mr. Ailes told colleagues on the time that he thought Mr. Trump was using his 2016 campaign to get a greater cope with NBC, which broadcast “The Apprentice,” in response to “Insurgency,” this reporter’s account of Mr. Trump’s rise within the G.O.P. And, when Ivanka Trump told Mr. Murdoch over lunch in 2015 that her father intended to run, Mr. Murdoch reportedly didn’t even look up from his soup, in response to “The Devil’s Bargain,” by Joshua Green.

But as Mr. Trump became larger than anybody news outlet — and greater than even his own political party — he was capable of turn the tables and rally his supporters against Fox or another outlet he felt was too critical of him. He usually used Twitter to attack Fox personalities like Megyn Kelly, Charles Krauthammer and Karl Rove.

The network could at all times be critical of him in its news coverage. But now the skepticism comes through louder — in asides from news anchors, in interviews with voters or in opinion articles for other Murdoch-owned properties.

Referring to the congressional investigation into the Jan. 6 attack, the Fox anchor Bret Baier said it had made Mr. Trump “look horrific” by detailing the way it had taken 187 minutes for him to be persuaded to say anything publicly in regards to the riot. One recent segment on FoxNews.com featured interviews with Trump supporters who were overwhelmingly unenthusiastic a few possible third campaign, saying that they thought “his time has passed” and that he was “a little bit too polarizing.” Then they offered their thoughts on who should replace him on the ticket. Unanimously, they named Mr. DeSantis.

“I spent 11 years at Fox, and I do know nothing pretaped hits a Fox screen that hasn’t been signed off on and sanctioned on the very top levels of management,” said Eric Bolling, a former Fox host who’s now with Newsmax. “Especially when it has to do with a presidential election.”

There will be no denying that Fox News stays Fox News. Viewers in recent weeks have seen occasionally critical coverage of Mr. Trump, but, unlike other news networks, Fox has chosen to air its own prime-time programming slightly than the hearings of the committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack. (The author of this text is an MSNBC contributor.) Mr. Carlson, Mr. Hannity and Ms. Ingraham dismiss the hearings as a “show trial.”

“They’re lying, and we aren’t going to assist them do it,” Mr. Carlson has said. “What we are going to do as an alternative is to attempt to let you know the reality.”

The network has aired the Jan. 6 committee hearings through the day, when far fewer viewers are tuning in. But other segments through the daytime and early evening play up violent crime in Democratic-run cities or Mr. Biden’s verbal and physical stumbles. As the federal government announced that a key indicator of economic health declined last quarter, the headline Fox scrawled across the screen read, “Biden Denies Recession as U.S. Enters Recession.”

On April 13, Mr. Trump called into Mr. Hannity’s show and ran through an inventory of crises he claimed wouldn’t be happening “had we won this election, which we did.”

He hasn’t been interviewed on the network since.

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