Fox News Contributor Names Alleged Whistleblower On Air, Gets Called Out By Host

A Fox News contributor caused a scene on Sunday when she named the alleged whistleblower at the center of the Ukraine scandal that prompted an impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump.

Mollie Hemingway revealed the whistleblower's alleged identity during an appearance on MediaBuzz, a Fox News program that analyzes media coverage and ethics. Hemingway is a senior editor for The Federalist.

Hemingway argued that the name has been leaked by other outlets (most of which are conservative sites) and that she felt "a little bit confused why we're pretending it hasn't already been reported."

She then went on to reveal the name that was reported by other news organizations. Fox News host Howie Kurtz and the fellow panelists during the segment appeared shocked that Hemingway shared the information live during the broadcast.

Kurtz quickly jumped in to say that he doesn't know whether or not the name mentioned by Hemingway is correct.

"I don't know whether this is actually the person or not, and I don't want to speculate about that," Kurtz said. He also called out other organizations for adding to the speculation by reporting unverified names.

"Is this an effort to have it sort of ooze into the mainstream media?" Kurtz asked his panel.

Some GOP allies of Trump have called for the whistleblower to come forward publicly. But many lawmakers on both sides of the aisle argue that Congress and the White House have a responsibility to protect their identity to ensure they're not retaliated against.

Newsweek has not verified the identity of the whistleblower.

fox news logo ukraine whistleblower identity
A flag with the new the logo for FOX flies outside their corporate headquarters on 6th Avenue on April 4, 2019 in New York City. A Fox News contributor caused a stir on Sunday when she revealed the Ukraine whistleblower's alleged identity during a live broadcast. Gary Hershorn/Getty

Hemingway suggested on Sunday that the media has a greater obligation to report relevant information than to try to protect a whistleblower's identity.

"I think people should be concerned about protecting people who are in the public news. But the most important thing is that the media should be in the business of sharing information that is in the public interest," she said.

Hemingway went on to say that you don't see the same level of "concern" for protecting someone's identity when it doesn't "match their political motivation."

Fox News had previously banned employees from using the alleged whistleblower's name. A network executive sent an internal production memo to colleagues requesting they did not name the whistleblower or use the name in graphics, according to a report from CNN.

Though this wasn't the first time a Fox News guest revealed who the alleged whistleblower is on-air. Last week, conservative radio host Lars Larson explicitly said the name during an interview with Harris Faulkner.

Larson later tried to justify using the name, arguing that the "American people deserve to know the name of the man making the accusation that the Democrats hope to use to remove an American president."

Fox News Contributor Names Alleged Whistleblower On Air, Gets Called Out By Host | U.S.