The Fox-fueled rise of new host Trey Gowdy

Trey Gowdy, a former Republican congressman turned Fox News contributor, joins the ranks of the community’s hosts on Sunday night time with the debut of his creatively named weekly program, Sunday Night in America with Trey Gowdy.

Fox looms massive within the profession ambitions of Republican politicians because of its massive viewers of GOP major voters and its distinguished, kingmaking hosts. It has been a launching pad for the occasion’s rising stars over time, from Sen. Marco Rubio and former House Speaker Paul Ryan to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy. And those that depart workplace or lose elections, from former House Speaker Newt Gingrich to Rep. Liz Cheney, have sought out a Fox touchdown spot as a technique to accumulate a gentle paycheck, keep within the community’s highlight, and plan their subsequent transfer. 

But even with the community’s historic intertwining with Republican politics in thoughts, Gowdy’s rise is outstanding. 

As a South Carolina congressman throughout President Barack Obama’s tenure, Gowdy gained prominence by stoking Fox’s obsession with the 2012 Benghazi assaults, finally turning into chairman of a choose committee that House Republicans fashioned on the community’s urging to analyze them. 

After his Fox-fueled committee failed to seek out a lot new data (however succeeded within the GOP aim of defeating Hillary Clinton’s presidential bid), he turned to defending President Donald Trump in Congress and in Fox appearances, earlier than leaving workplace to do the identical factor on the community’s payroll.

And now he has his personal present, a platform he can use to advertise his concepts and earn money whereas he waits to see if a return to politics is worth it.

Fox launched Gowdy to prominence as Benghazi prosecutor

Fox spent years obsessively trying to turn the lethal 2012 terrorist assaults on U.S. authorities services in Benghazi, Libya, right into a political scandal for Obama and Clinton. Gowdy turned one of the community’s go-to congressional friends to debate the assaults, utilizing his common appearances to push the same dishonest claims concerning the administration’s response to the assaults that Fox’s hosts championed. 

Then within the spring of 2014, Fox seized on a newly launched e-mail from an Obama nationwide safety aide, distorting it to falsely recommend that the administration had lied concerning the assaults for political acquire. The community’s commentators began demanding one more congressional probe of the administration’s response primarily based on this manufactured scandal, and then-House Speaker John Boehner obliged, with House Republicans voting to type a choose committee to analyze the assaults. 

Appointed to chair the committee was none apart from Fox’s Benghazi favorite, Gowdy. He used the function to carry a collection of high-profile hearings on the community’s most well-liked matter — and garner extra Fox airtime.

Gowdy’s committee shed little new light on the already extensively investigated assaults and located no new proof of wrongdoing by Clinton, who had been secretary of state on the time. But it did obtain what each Fox hosts and Republican leaders had admitted was its real goal — damaging Clinton’s political energy as she ran for president, notably by means of its focus on her much-maligned use of a non-public e-mail server. 

The overwhelming press fixation on Clinton’s emails, notably within the waning days of the marketing campaign, finally helped guarantee Trump’s 2016 victory.

Gowdy cuts political profession quick for Fox gig

Gowdy didn’t have to attend lengthy to reap his rewards for serving to to elect Trump.

He took over the chair of the House Oversight Committee in 2017, utilizing that submit largely to conduct oversight of Obama’s administration whereas defending Trump’s. But in late January 2018, he announced that may not search one other time period in workplace and was returning to working towards regulation in South Carolina. A number of days later, Fox announced that it had employed him as a contributor. He joined former Rep. Jason Chaffetz, his predecessor as Oversight Committee chair, who had similarly left office for a slot on the community in 2017.

Gowdy’s function, based on Fox’s press launch saying his new job, was providing “political and authorized evaluation.” In follow, that meant that when he appeared on Fox to defend Trump and his allies from investigations into their numerous scandals, his paycheck got here from the community as a substitute of Congress.

That model of commentary apparently captured Trump’s consideration. Fox briefly minimize ties with Gowdy in October 2019 amid experiences that he had been employed as an out of doors authorized counsel to the then-president, who was combating his first impeachment (the association rapidly fell apart and Gowdy rejoined the community that December).

It additionally caught the attention of Fox’s brass. Gowdy did multiple stints earlier this 12 months as one of the revolving guest hosts on Fox News Primetime, the community’s new 7 p.m. EST present.

Gowdy was apparently not prepared for Primetime. But Fox is pleased to offer him an opportunity on Sunday Night.

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