‘Stop lying’: Hannity denies being told to stop covering former Ukraine ambassador

November 8, 2019

Two Congressional witnesses have tried to link Fox News personality Sean Hannity to State Department discussions about Ukraine. But Hannity put an end to the rumors on his Fox News show Thursday night with a strong denial. “All of you had better stop lying about me,” Hannity warned.

Hannity mentioned in testimony

During a closed-door hearing last month, former Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch claimed that the State Department had asked Hannity to stop covering allegations against her on his Fox News show.

She was asked by House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) if she had ever found out “whether the Secretary of State was going to defend you or not, apart from the refusal by the Secretary to issue a statement in your defense?”

Yovanovitch said that what she “was told by Phil Reeker was that the Secretary or perhaps somebody around him was going to place a call to Mr. Hannity on Fox News to say, you know, what is going on? I mean, do you have proof of these kinds of allegations or not? And if you have proof, you know, tell me, and if not, stop.”

“And I understand that that call was made. I don’t know whether it was the Secretary or somebody else in his inner circle. And for a time, you know, things kind of simmered down,” she added.

A similar claim was made during testimony from State Department Deputy Assistant Secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs George Kent.

“I believe, to the best of my recollection, the counselor for the Department, Ulrich Brechbuhl, reached out and suggested to Mr. Hannity that, if there was no proof of the allegations, that he should stop covering them,” Kent said.

“You had better stop lying about me”

For his part, Hannity issued a vehement denial of Yovanovitch’s and Kent’s claims, saying the State Department never contacted him about it.

“[Kent] also testified I was talking about the former Ambassador of Ukraine,” Hannity noted. “I’m going to spell it out for all of you one more time, I suggest you read my Twitter account. I don’t know anything about that lady. I have no idea how to pronounce her last name,” Hannity claimed on Thursday night.

“I never talked to Secretary Pompeo or anybody at the State Department about her or anything else,” he added.

“I don’t know anything about her. I would advise you all very strongly, I’m saying this in a nice way. All of you had better stop lying about me, you now have been told the truth again. Stop lying.”

This was the third time that Hannity had addressed the issue on air this week. On Monday, he dismissed the claim as “fake news”:

Apparently I’m being accused of making some kind of allegations against the ambassador and that Secretary Pompeo or someone from the State Department called me about it. No, that never happened. That’d be fake news. The ambassador was barely ever mentioned on our show. I don’t know anything about this woman to be honest. Her name came up a few times on the show. She was an Obama holdover. I did ask one question about a news report. If she was involved in something, it was a question. I never talked to Secretary Pompeo about Ukraine. I never talked to anyone at the State Department about this ambassador. Sorry to burst your fake news bubble.

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Adam Peters

Adam Peters is a Conservative Institute staff writer.