The hosts and editors of Fox News at two of Rupert Murdoch’s largest newspapers are calling on President Donald Trump to either present evidence or immediately stop accusations of “electoral fraud” and are calling on him to “leave office with dignity” if he cannot refute his defeat.
Fox News anchorwoman Laura Ingraham prepared Trump supporters on Friday night to “accept” an “unfavorable outcome” of the president’s defeat hours before her station announced the presidential election in favor of Democratic candidate Joe Biden. On Saturday, the Wall Street Journal and the editorial staff of the New York Post, both owned by Murdoch’s News Corp., released op-eds calling for Trump to immediately drop the baseless story of the “stolen election” that he continues to tweet four days after election day. Just one month after the Post called Trump an “invincible hero,” the newspaper’s editors are now urging him to “wish Biden well” and admit instead of promoting “groundless conspiracies.
The WSJ board said that Trumps and his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani’s generic “Philadelphia is historically corrupt” allegations will not stand up in court and the president should “dignifiedly concede” after all the votes are counted. Only a handful of incumbent Republicans have called Biden a “president-elect,” something Fox News moderators were supposed to avoid even when their own network called Saturday’s election for Biden a “president-elect.
“Get Rudy Giuliani off the air. Ask for the recounts you’re entitled to, wish Biden well and look to the future,” wrote the NYPost editors.
In response, Media Matters for America president Angelo Carusone issued a statement condemning the alleged move: “Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch are actively undermining confidence in our election, and this decision will further stir up some of Trump’s most conspiratorial supporters, who are already prone to violence.
Zero-sitting Republicans have publicly called on Trump to yield as of Saturday night.
“It looks almost impossible that President Trump will win reelection,” wrote the New York Post editorial staff on Saturday. “To preserve his legacy, Trump must persuade Republicans to move forward – by behaving with dignity in the face of likely defeat.
On Friday night, Ingraham shared a similar sentiment with both Trump and his supporters, preparing them to accept the overwhelming possibility of defeat.
“If and when it is time to accept an unfavorable outcome in this election, and we hope it never happens, but if and when it does happen, President Trump must do so with the same grace and composure he has shown,” Ingraham said.
So far in the past 24 hours, only a handful of incumbent Republicans have named Biden as their elected president: Utah Senator Mitt Romney, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, Vermont Governor Phil Scott, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, and Michigan Congressman Paul Mitchell. Baker issued a statement on Friday saying, “The President’s statements that there is a national conspiracy are not supported by any of the facts and are detrimental to democracy.
Governor Baker added that Trump’s statements “cheapen” both the American electorate and any candidate running in 2020.
The editorial board of the Wall Street Journal called on Trump to “present” evidence immediately or to stop allegations of electoral fraud, reducing his potential chances for 2024 should he decide to run again.
“But Mr. Trump’s legacy will be greatly diminished if his final act is a bitter refusal to accept a legitimate defeat… Mr. Trump hates to lose, and no doubt he will fight to the end. But when defeat comes, he will serve himself and his country best by honoring America’s democratic traditions and leaving office with dignity.
“We hope that in that case [at the end of the vote count and the lawsuit]he would give in gracefully,” the WSJ editorial continued. “We would hate to see this legacy ruined by the refusal to accept the normal change of power.
The country’s major news media, including Fox News, CNN, Associated Press and MSNBC, all called the presidential elections by Saturday afternoon for Biden to finally run. Trump, in turn, attacked the news channels and on Saturday morning, while playing golf in Sterling, Virginia