Fox News host Jesse Watters has been blistered by critics over the last 24 hours for insinuating that special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation could amount to a coup d'etat against a sitting president.
Daniel Politi at Slate.com said that on his Saturday night broadcast, Watters welcomed senior White House aide Kellyanne Conway to discuss the Mueller probe while displaying a chyron that read, "A COUP IN AMERICA?"
"Uh...that's not what a coup means," wrote De Elizabeth at Teen Vogue.
"Cable news banners don’t just appear out of thin air. Producers brainstorm, fact-check, proof-read them. Hosts are sometimes involved too. Yes, mistakes slip through occasionally. But this doesn’t look like a mistake," wrote Brian Stelter of CNN's "Reliable Sources" on Twitter.
Cable news banners don’t just appear out of thin air. Producers brainstorm, fact-check, proof-read them. Hosts are… https://t.co/1uPJCjFU69— Brian Stelter (@Brian Stelter) 1513514814.0
"Coup?! I cover wars. Militaries. Actual coups. Where citizens violently rise up and kill each other for power over each other," wrote Kevin Baron, editor of DefenseOne.com. "This is alarmingly irresponsible language, even for Fox. Inflammatory. Baseless. Dangerous."
Coup?! I cover wars. Militaries. Actual coups. Where citizens violently rise up and kill each other for power over… https://t.co/46IXpNYrl0— Kevin Baron (@Kevin Baron) 1513478004.0
It's clear Fox News is hoping to spark violence if Trump is impeached: Fox News' Jesse Watters Suggests We May Have… https://t.co/2ZbBANYh5K— (((DeanObeidallah))) (@(((DeanObeidallah)))) 1513520756.0
Even FOX's Howard Kurtz calls out ridiculous propaganda from FOX News Trump flack Jesse Watters suggesting an Anti-… https://t.co/hVuHf6Fa47— Richard W. (@Richard W.) 1513531809.0
Even Howard Kurtz. For real.
Stay alert. They're announcing something here. https://t.co/YtPtdxw2ze— Jay Rosen (@Jay Rosen) 1513532747.0
The best preparation for an actual coup (against the judiciary) is to claim that there has already been a coup (aga… https://t.co/08TApTLgwj— Yascha Mounk (@Yascha Mounk) 1513504597.0
The more the White House interferes politically with this investigation, the more they prove why a Special Counsel… https://t.co/NdeVFHT487— Christian Vanderbrouk (@Christian Vanderbrouk) 1513477396.0
In April, Watters was abruptly sent "on vacation" by Fox News after making what appeared to be a crude oral sex joke about President Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka.