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NEW TONE ON VIRUS FOR FOX NEWS STARS – TO A POINT
NEW TONE ON VIRUS FOR FOX NEWS STARS – TO A POINT
Fox News Channel’s influential prime-time lineup is starting to reflect the changed realities of the coronavirus outbreak, without embracing old enemies.
The network most popular with President Donald Trump’s supporters has added a daily coronavirus-themed show and extended news hours, is practicing social distancing on the air and is frequently featuring guests like Dr. Mehmet Oz and Dr. Nicole Saphier.

With the country hunkering down to protect against the virus’ spread, talk of “hysteria” and “panic” was gone from the prime-time opinion lineup that is the network’s engine. Sean Hannity promised “facts without fear” and said that “we are all Americans.” Laura Ingraham said federal guidelines restricting movement should be taken extremely seriously.

Some things remained consistent: There was time to criticize Democrats and non-Fox media.

The sister channel Fox Business Network last weekend shelved a prime-time program hosted by Trish Regan, days after she suggested criticism directed at Trump for his coronavirus response was “yet another attempt to impeach the president.”

Tucker Carlson, the first of Fox News’ three prime-time personalities, stood out last week with his calls to Americans to treat the coronavirus seriously. On Monday’s show, Carlson said that protecting the jobs of Americans should be the government’s top priority.

Hannity, Trump’s top media ally and cable news’ most popular host, last week told his viewers that while the coronavirus is a serious matter that poses risks and challenges, it’s not “the end of days. It’s not the end of the world.”

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March 20, 2020