Hannity addresses Ukraine claims at 2:08-mark in video above
Fox news host Sean Hannity has demanded people “stop lying” about him after it was revealed he had been mentioned by two separate officials in their testimonies to the impeachment committee as it seeks evidence to remove Donald Trump from office.
Hannity was mentioned in the investigation into the president by both the former Ukrainian Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch and George Kent, a State Department Deputy Assistant Secretary who oversees the eastern-European country.
Both said in separate hearings that the state department reached out to Mr Hannity after it was claimed on his show that Ms Yovanovitch had “bad mouthed the president” – an unproven allegation that preceded her early dismissal.
Mr Kent told the enquiry: “I believe, to the best of my recollection, the counselor for the Department, UIrich Brechbuhl, reached out and suggested to Mr. Hannity that if there was no proof of the allegations, that he should stop covering them.”
His comments in an interview last month corroborate claims from Ms Yovanovitch released earlier this week. In her own testimony she described being told secretary of State Mike Pompeo might reach out to the Fox News host personally over the claims.
Hannity has now strongly denied the claim, writing on twitter that Mr Kent’s testimony was “More lies & Fake news”.
“I never ever spoke to Sec Pompeo or anyone else at the State Dept. about Ukraine” he wrote. “I’ve never even heard the names of the people mentioned from State.
“Also, I never talked to anyone in Ukraine. I don’t know anybody there.”
He added: “Here is a Warning, you have all been told the truth AGAIN!! I STRONGLY ADVISE ALL OF YOU TO STOP LYING ABOUT ME”.
The tweets came before another dismissal of the claim on his Fox news show, with Mr Hannity claiming Ms Yovanovitch had only been mentioned in passing briefly “four times” on the show, adding “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.”
However, despite claiming he “doesn’t know anything about this woman” in relation to the former ambassador, footage from as recently as March this year showed the host discussing Ms Yovanovitch on his show.
The allegations repeated on the show about Ms Yovanovitch appear to be based on the reporting of John Solomon – a current Fox News contributor who was also named in impeachment testimony.
Kurt Volker, former United States Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations, told the committee Mr Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani had coordinated with Mr Solomon on stories at a time Mr Giuliani has been accused of leading “a campaign of lies and deceit” against the ambassador.