It all started three weeks ago, when I agreed to do an interview with "CBS Sunday Morning" and their special contributor, Ted Koppel.
The interview lasted well over 45 minutes, and we discussed in great detail why there's such a great divide in America in politics and in media. In my honest opinion, the exchange was a substantive give-and-take, worthwhile for any audience to see. But what the audience saw was a distorted fraction of that discussion.
“Honestly, I think liberalism has to be defeated,” I told the veteran newsman. “Socialism must be defeated in a political sense. This is not a -- we don't want a revolution in this country.”
“Well, what more do you want?” he replied. “You've got the White House, you've got the House ... you've got the Senate.”
“And then we have angry snowflakes and then we've got a Democratic establishment,” I answered. “I say the press in this country is out to destroy this president.
“We have to give some credit to the American people that they're somewhat intelligent and that they know the difference between an opinion show and a news show,” I added.
I noticed Koppel was looking skeptical, and I said so.
“I am cynical because,” he said, “you know...”
I knew where this was going. “You think we're bad for America?” I asked. “You think I'm bad for America?”
“Yes,” he said, before proceeding to insult me and my TV, radio and Web audiences with this fine piece of objective reporting: “You have people who are determined that ideology is more important than facts.”
Wow. One minute and 10 seconds from a 45-minute interview, and he basically called me a liar. He doesn’t like opinion shows, but he’s certainly free with his opinion.
I guess people like Ted Koppel feel the American people can't distinguish between opinion and news. That's kind of like Obama, remember? He said people clinging to their God, guns and religion. Or Hillary Clinton who said we were ignorant, irredeemable deplorables.
Now, beyond this interview being a total waste of my time, it is a flagrant example of what I call “edited fake news.” Remember, CBS News is the former home of Dan Rather. Remember him? He was forced to resign after reporting an inflammatory fake news story about President George W. Bush. Rather used fake documents to bolster his story.
CBS News is also the former home of Sharyl Attkisson. She was marginalized and stonewalled, and they wouldn't show a lot of her investigative journalism into President Obama and his administration. Is that agenda-driven?
And now CBS has produced a package taking shots at me all while prominently displaying their dishonesty, their bias and total hypocrisy here for every viewer to see.
Koppel’s interview with me wasn't about substance. It wasn't about getting my real opinion. The story was written long before he walked into our studio at Fox. I was just used as a prop to advance his narrative, which is why so little of the interview was actually used.
That is “edited fake news.” Other networks -- they play the same game and they have for many years. It It's time to expose this for what it really is: Cheap shot attacks in the name of, quote, "journalism," all to advance their biased agenda.
What Ted was really asking is this: Are our opinion shows bad for America? He thinks they are. We know, because he gave his own opinion. He did exactly what he said is bad for America.
I express my opinion because I am a talk show host and commentator. I claim to be no more, no less. But Ted Koppel? He thinks he's down-the-middle, fair and balanced. A real journalist.
That's the difference between me and Ted Koppel. I'm honest with my audience. He is not.
But if CBS and Ted Koppel want to prove they have at least a shred of honesty, there is one thing they could do. They could post on the Internet the entire, unedited footage of the interview. Let Americans see the footage they didn’t want to air, and the public can decide.
Until they do, it is Ted Koppel and his “edited fake news” cronies who are bad for America.
Adapted from Sean Hannity's opening monologue on "Hannity," March 27, 2017
Sean Hannity currently serves as host of FOX News Channel's (FNC) Hannity (weekdays 10-11PM/ET). He joined the network in 1996 and is based in New York. Click here for more information on Sean Hannity.