Fox News bumps Jeanine Pirro’s show after anti-Muslim remarks
Jeanine Pirro is off Fox News prime time — for one night, at least.
Fox News removed Pirro’s program, “Justice With Judge Jeanine,” from its usual 9 p.m. time slot on Saturday, one week after the network took the rare step of publicly rebuking the host for an on-air monologue that questioned a Muslim lawmaker’s loyalty to the United States.
Fox News declined to say whether Pirro had been formally suspended. “We are not commenting on internal scheduling matters,” the network said in a statement Saturday evening.
A former prosecutor known for fiery monologues, Pirro is one of the most fervent on-air champions of President Donald Trump, an old friend from her days in New York political circles who often urges his Twitter followers to tune in to her show.
She came under heavy criticism last weekend for her remarks about Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., a Muslim who wears a hijab. “Is her adherence to this Islamic doctrine indicative of her adherence to Shariah law, which in itself is antithetical to the United States Constitution?” Pirro asked.
Among those calling her comments prejudiced was a Muslim producer at Pirro’s own network. Several advertisers said they would no longer sponsor her show.
Fox News, which has mostly stood by its star personalities in past scandals, responded by saying that Pirro’s remarks “do not reflect those of the network and we have addressed the matter with her directly.”
The network has not elaborated on that discussion or what internal punishment, if any, was meted out.
Fox News was also grappling with an uproar over another of its star hosts, pundit Tucker Carlson, who has faced scrutiny for offensive comments he made on a shock-jock radio program about a decade ago. The comments were recently published by the left-wing advocacy group Media Matters for America.
Carlson did not miss any of his regular network appearances this past week. On air, he thanked officials at Fox News for backing him. The network has not issued its own statement on the matter.
Pirro has not apologized for her remarks. “My intention was to ask a question and start a debate, but of course because one is Muslim does not mean you don’t support the Constitution,” she said in a statement last weekend.
Since then, Pirro, an active user on Twitter and Instagram, has been silent on social media.
Last week, Omar — who was recently criticized for comments in Congress that some lawmakers viewed as anti-Semitic — thanked Fox News after the network distanced itself from Pirro’s remarks. “No one’s commitment to our constitution should be questioned because of their faith or country of birth,” she wrote on Twitter.
Viewers who tuned in to watch Pirro on Saturday night instead saw a rerun of Fox News’ documentary-style show, “Scandalous,” a series that usually focuses on the travails of prominent Democratic politicians and their relatives. The episode that ran Saturday was about the 1991 rape trial of William Kennedy Smith, a nephew of President John F. Kennedy.