Sean Hannity proved, once again, that he’s willing to say absolutely anything to defend members of Steve Bannon’s Republican Party, even if it means suggesting a 14-year-old consented to being defiled by a 30-something district attorney — who now happens to be running for Senate.
While discussing the allegations that Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore seduced and initiated sexual contact with a 14-year-old girl on his radio show, Hannity attempted to dismiss her claims as “consensual.” His co-host, Lynda McLaughlin, first described the encounter as consensual, but Hannity quite clearly agreed. Neither seem to understand what consent means, or that a 14-year-old can’t legally give consent in the state of Alabama.
Here’s the exchange:
Hannity: How do you possibly tell, know the truth? Except, okay, so the two other girls were older in this case. He was apparently, like, 32, and he dated — one girl was 18, one girl was 17, they never said he did — there was no sexual — there was kissing involved, and then they’re saying this one encounter with a 14-year-old…
McLaughlin: And it was consensual —
Hannity: And consensual, that’s true. And there’s, you know, I just don’t know how you find out the truth.
When transcripts of Hannity’s conversation with McLauhglin hit Twitter, a predictable shit storm erupted — and one that Hannity must have known was coming as he addressed the comments on his Fox News show later Thursday evening.
“I thought she was talking about the 18-year-old or the 17-year-old,” Hannity told his guest, fellow Fox News host Geraldo Rivera. “That one line was absolutely wrong, I misspoke.”
Even if Hannity misspoke, as he claims, his ruthless defense of Moore throughout Thursday night’s show remains repulsive. Hannity repeatedly implied all four women who spoke to The Washington Post were liars — he even floated the possibility that they were paid to smear Moore.
I’ve listened to clip (and you can too). It’s pretty difficult to ascertain whether Hannity or McLauhglin were referring to the 14-year-old Leigh Corfman, now 53, when they said it was “consensual.” Corfman, however, is the only woman who said her sexual contact with Moore went beyond kissing.
But does it really matter whether Hannity “misspoke”? He still chose to stand on the side of someone who was accused of preying on four teenagers. Hannity challenged the veracity of their stories, instead of challenging Moore.