Geraldo Rivera Condemns Sean Hannity Over Jan. 6 Text: 'Remember That Concern You Had'

Geraldo Rivera launched an on-air attack against Sean Hannity on Tuesday after it was revealed that he and other Fox News personalities messaged Donald Trump's former chief of staff Mark Meadows during the January 6 insurrection, urging the then-president to put an end to the riot.

Rivera appeared on Hannity's show after the House Select Committee investigating the attack at the Capitol revealed that Hannity, Laura Ingraham and Brian Kilmeade all texted Meadows as the mob was storming the building, citing concerns about the violence taking place and how negatively it would affect Trump.

"Can he make a statement? Ask people to leave the Capitol," Hannity texted Meadows on January 6, revealed Republican Rep. Liz Cheney, vice chair of the congressional committee investigating the riot.

Ingraham also texted Meadows that Trump "needs to tell people in the Capitol to go home. This is hurting all of us. He is destroying his legacy." Kilmeade texted Meadows: "Please get him on tv. Destroying everything you have accomplished."

During his show, Hannity condemned the media for focusing on the Capitol riot instead of the hundreds of Black Lives Matter protests which occurred in the summer of 2020 across the country.

In response, Rivera said that while the disorder of the Black Lives Matter protests was "concerning," the January 6 attack was "unleashed, incited and inspired" by the president.

Hannity then interrupted Rivera to state that Trump did not urge his supporters to attack the Capitol on January 6 after spending several weeks falsely claiming the 2020 election was rigged, but to "peacefully, patriotically" march to the building in protest.

In response, Rivera said: "I beg you, Sean, to remember the frame of mind you were in when you wrote that text on January 6, and when Laura did, and when Brian did, and when Don [Trump] Jr. did.

"Remember that concern you had. Remember the frustration of our beloved 45th president—where was he? How could he be doing this? Why doesn't he say something? You saw unfolding before your very eyes an attack on democracy, an attack on the Constitution."

During the criticism, Hannity said that he texted Meadows because he "wanted the riot to end" before handing over to Fox News commentator Dan Bongino.

Bongino then accused Rivera of "backstabbing" the former president, adding that it is "disgusting" and "vile" that he pretends to be Trump's friend.

In response, Rivera shouted over the top of Bongino that he supported Trump until he "abandoned democracy" and "refused to accept the will of the people."

Cheney said that the messages sent to Meadows by the Fox News presenters show there is "no doubt [that] the White House knew exactly what was happening" at the Capitol and Trump still "refused to act when action by our president was required" for more than three hours.

The texts appear to be a direct contradiction to how many Fox News hosts later reported on the January 6 riot, including downplaying the seriousness of the attack or spreading conspiracy theories that the violence was actually committed by far-left Antifa protesters.

The messages also raise questions of impartiality and ethical standards at Fox News, including the issue of their journalists contacting senior White House officials to pass on messages to the president.

"Texting the chief of staff to urge him to tell the president to call for an end to rioting is a good thing," Tim Graham, director of media analysis at the conservative Media Research Center, told The Associated Press. "But, ideally, journalists shouldn't be texting political advice to the White House."

Fox News has been contacted for comment.

hannity mark meadows
Geraldo Rivera (L) attacked Sean Hannity (R) during his Fox News show after it was revealed that he messaged Donald Trump's former chief of staff Mark Meadows during the January 6 insurrection. Roy Rochlin/Taylor Hill/WireImage/Getty Images