Republican Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona and Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont both criticized conservative media outlets like Fox News for smearing Jamal Khashoggi.
Flake tweeted in response to a Washington Post article on the smear campaign:
This is reprehensible https://t.co/TvPEvJvaH5
— Jeff Flake (@JeffFlake) October 19, 2018
On MSNBC, Sen. Patrick Leahy said, “I agree with Jeff Flake, it is reprehensible, and it is amazing that I never thought as an American or United States Senator that we would see our country trying to the justify I was a prosecutor for eight years and I handled a lot of murder cases. When Donald Trump says that, well, we have to wait and see what the Saudis might find. Khashoggi walked into the Saudi consulate, and that is the place where if you dropped a pencil on the floor, they would know it. He never comes out, and two weeks later, well, we are waiting for them to find out what happened I will tell you what happened, he was murdered. He was murdered by the Saudis, and he was murdered, because he stood up for the free press, and murdered because he disagreed with him. And let’s show the United States actually cares for freedom of the press and stand up and say so. He was murdered.”
A Saudi prince owns a minority stake in Fox News, so the conservative network has its own Saudi influence issues, but the broader point is that conservatives are trying to help Donald Trump help the Saudis cover up a murder of a journalist. This is not what the United States stands for, and the fact that Fox News would employ a guest who would engage in such vicious and untrue smearing of a murder victim demonstrates why Fox needs to take the word news out of its name.
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