- The Washington Times
Friday, April 22, 2022

Some Fox personalities couldn’t resist taking jabs at former colleague and ship-jumper Chris Wallace after the collapse of his new gig at CNN+, a casualty of the new management’s decision Thursday to scuttle the streaming service after just 30 days.

Mr. Wallace left Fox News in December to host an interview show on CNN+, and later said that working for Fox had become “unsustainable,” which may have created some bad blood with the Fox crew.

“Apparently Americans were not willing to fork over three whole dollars for a daily dose of Humpty Dumpty or the occasional interview from political swamp creature Chris Wallace,” said host Sean Hannity on Thursday night’s show.

“Humpty Dumpty” is Mr. Hannity’s nickname for CNN’s Brian Stelter.

“Hannity” also showed a graphic of four cartoon ghosts with the faces of CNN personalities Wallace, Stelter, Anderson Cooper and Jake Tapper circling a tombstone with the inscription: “RIP CNN+.”

Mr. Hannity was restrained compared with his colleague Greg Gutfeld, who took repeated shots at Mr. Wallace during Fox’s top-rated afternoon show “The Five.”

“The Democratic bench is thinner than Chris Wallace’s demo reel from CNN+,” said Mr. Gutfeld.

A few minutes later, he said that Black Lives Matter “has done to Black people what Chris Wallace did to CNN+: Entice them with a promise and then ditch them at the side of the road.”

Mr. Gutfeld also said, “I’m going to do this every segment, so just get used to it.”

He wasn’t kidding. During a discussion of former President Barack Obama’s speech against the “disinformation problem,” Mr. Gutfeld said, “To quote Chris Wallace, I don’t think the credibility of this initiative is sustainable.”

He said: “Look for independent voices with free time. I guess that eliminates Chris Wallace.”

In a segment on climate change, Mr. Gutfeld said, “I think it is a challenge that we will be facing, but a lot of the solutions that are coming from the left are unreliable. Look at CNN+, how much money they invested in wind power by hiring Chris Wallace.”

After Judge Jeanine Pirro said that a passenger on an airplane once threw up on her, Mr. Gutfeld asked, “Was it Chris Wallace?”

Mr. Gutfeld concluded the show with a video of a buffalo wandering by a city tavern cordoned off with police tape, saying that “as we know, CNN+ closed down, so you see a lot of their talent out on the street.”

“For example, I just looked out at Sixth Avenue, and who did I see just hanging out in front of a tavern? None other than, guess, Chris Wallace, just wandering around, crossing over the police tape,” Mr. Gutfeld said. “They just shut down CNN+, there he is, he’s a little downtrodden, but who knows, he’ll probably head over to CNN proper, they’ll probably find a spot for him.”

The conservative Media Research Center, which compiled a video of Mr. Gutfeld’s ripostes, called it “probably the funniest thing you’ll see all day.”

“Well deserved mocking! Has anyone made a worse career choice than Chris Wallace? Going from Fox News to CNN+? Lesson learned,” said Kevin Tober, a news analyst at MRC’s NewsBusters.

Meanwhile, the Daily Beast scolded Mr. Gutfeld, saying he “saw an opportunity to be petty.”

“Unsurprisingly, Gutfeld made it known that he was not a big fan of Wallace even while the award-winning journalist was at Fox,” said Daily Beast media reporter Justin Baragona. “After Wallace heaped praise on President Joe Biden’s inauguration speech last year, Gutfeld roundly mocked the anchor with an over-the-top performance.”

Warner Bros. Discovery, which took over CNN in the recent merger between Discovery and former owner WarnerMedia, announced Thursday that CNN+ would shut down April 30, a month after its March 29 launch and an estimated $300 million expense.

Mr. Wallace worked at NBC and ABC News before jumping in 2003 to Fox News, where his duties included hosting “Fox News Sunday.”

• Valerie Richardson can be reached at vrichardson@washingtontimes.com.

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