Credo Action

Don't let Megyn Kelly leverage her NBC platform to promote right-wing hate

Sign the petition

The petition to NBC executives reads:

“Ensure NBC employees like Megyn Kelly are not using the network’s platform to promote right-wing hate.”

    You'll receive periodic updates on offers and activism opportunities.

    Don't let Megyn Kelly leverage her NBC platform to promote right-wing hate

    Anti-LGBTQ hate. Racist white nationalism. Anti-Muslim bigotry. This is the extremism that right-wing cable television personality Megyn Kelly regularly invited on to her primetime Fox News show, "The Kelly File."

    Kelly is a conservative ideologue who spent years at Fox News passing dangerous right-wing extremism off as “fair and balanced” news. Now she is headed to NBC, where she will host two shows and contribute to NBC’s breaking and political news programming.1

    NBC had troubling ties to Trump during the presidential campaign. It offered the racist, fascist sexual predator high profile national platforms that put the network’s integrity into question.2 Now, even though the massive resistance to Trump is fueling record ratings for MSNBC’s prime-time shows, network executives have been steering the direction of its programming to the hard right.3 We need to speak out now to let NBC’s executives know that they must not enable Kelly to use her new position to promote the same right-wing extremism she brought to Fox.

    Tell NBC executives: Ensure NBC’s employees are not using the network’s platform to promote right-wing hate.

    Fox News’ bigoted, xenophobic and misogynistic reporting helped lay the groundwork for Donald Trump’s rise to power, and Kelly was one of its flagship personalities. Because she had moments where she seemed to stray from the Fox party line – Trump launched a sexist attack on her after she asked him a question about his misogyny during a presidential debate – media coverage sometimes painted her as a moderate. But it is important to remember that her reporting mainstreamed racism, xenophobia and anti-LGBTQ bigotry for years.

    A look at the guests she brought on to her show speaks volumes about the extremism she amplified on her platform. They included:

    • Anti-LGBTQ extremist Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council, a group designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC);
    • Virulent xenophobe and racist Ann Coulter, whom the SPLC has referred to as “a white nationalist in the mainstream;” and
    • Brigitte Gabriel, founder of Act for America, a group that spreads ”hate speech demonizing Muslims,” according to the SPLC.4

    Kelly’s own on-air views were similarly hateful. She minimized the impact of racism on communities of color, challenged the notion that police brutality disproportionately impacts communities of color, defended Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric, promoted anti-transgender bigotry, and amplified and legitimized the recent right-wing smear attack against Planned Parenthood.5,6 NBC cannot let her spread the same kind of hate.”

    Tell NBC executives: Ensure NBC’s employees are not using the network’s platform to promote right-wing hate.

    Comcast/NBCUniversal is already under intense scrutiny for its ties to Trump. Through "Celebrity Apprentice," it has a contractual arrangement with Trump, which creates a conflict of interest that undermines the credibility of NBC News, MSNBC and CNBC. A little over a year ago, NBC came under criticism for inviting Trump to host "Saturday Night Live," a decision that not only legitimized Trump’s hate, but provided him with a free national platform to bolster and sanitize his image. NBC News failed to report first on the Access Hollywood tapes that showed Trump bragging about grabbing women’s genitals though they were in the network’s possession for four days before The Washington Post broke the story.7

    Now more than ever, we need media outlets to challenge Trump and the right-wing hate he promotes, but it seems that NBC is moving in the opposite direction. In addition to the presence of Kelly in the NBC lineup, NBC News Chairman Andy Lack is trying to move MSNBC away from its left-leaning roots.8 He has brought in George Will and Greta Van Susteren from Fox and Nicolle Wallace, who was a spokesperson for President George W. Bush and John McCain’s presidential campaign. Lack is also in talks with Trump supporter and conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt.9,10,11

    NBC celebrated Kelly’s hire with a press release that completely white-washed her right-wing career at Fox.12 Before Kelly’s shows start in June, we have to demand that NBC’s leaders do better and refuse to let her use her show to promote hate.

    Thanks for everything you do.

    References:

    1. Lisa Marie Segarra, "Megyn Kelly had her first day at NBC," Fortune, May 1, 2017.
    2. Katie Sullivan, "NBC News Is Struggling To Report On Its Own Trump Problem," Media Matters, Dec. 12, 2016.
    3. Ryan Grim, "With Trump in the White House, MSNBC is resisting the resistance," The Huffington Post, May 1, 2017.
    4. Zachary Pleat & Cristina López G., "Will Megyn Kelly bring the hate group leaders And extremists who frequented her Fox show to NBC?," Media Matters for America, Jan. 6, 2017.
    5. Jessica Torres, "GOP debate moderator Megyn Kelly has long history of offensive, out-of-touch comments about minorities," Media Matters for America, Aug. 4, 2015.
    6. Rachel Larris, "Megyn Kelly defends anti-Planned Parenthood smear videos with blatant falsehoods," Media Matters for America, Dec. 1, 2015.
    7. Bill Carter, "NBC caught in dilemma over its own Donald Trump, Billy Bush tape," CNN Money, Oct. 10, 2016.
    8. Grim, "With Trump in the White House, MSNBC is resisting the resistance."
    9. Hadas Gold, “George Will joins MSNBC, “ POLITICO, May 8, 2017.
    10. John Whitehouse, "NBC is building a Trump normalization machine," Media Matters for America, Jan. 4, 2017.
    11. Yashar Ali, "Conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt in talks for MSNBC show, sources say," New York Magazine, April 28, 2017.
    12. NBC News, "Megyn Kelly Joins NBC News," Jan. 3, 2017