It sure seems like Jesse Watters has swallowed the Q pill. While the Fox News host was once confined to serving as Bill O’Reilly’s man on the street—a role he used to mock Asian Americans and commemorate the anniversary of 9/11 by commenting, of terrorist attacks, it’s “always a Muslim”—Watters has since graduated to using his own weekend show to discuss the pet conspiracy theory of Donald Trump’s most ardent supporters that claims the president is secretly battling a deep state pedophile ring that supposedly includes Hillary Clinton and dozens of Hollywood, media, and political celebrities. During a Saturday interview with first son Eric Trump, Watters commented that QAnon followers have “uncovered a lot of great stuff.”
Watters began the segment by questioning Twitter’s “censorship and some funny business” against the QAnon movement. “[Twitter] eliminated about 7,000 accounts, a hundred and fifty others—100,000 accounts are in the crosshairs,” he said. “Do you think that this is an attempt to kind of interfere in an election?” Watters acknowledged that some QAnon-related theories are “crazy,” including the belief that a pedophile ring is being run in a Washington, D.C., pizzeria and that the online retailer Wayfair is secretly shipping sex trafficking victims, but lauded their posts commenting on the Jeffrey Epstein scandal and their claims about the “deep state.” “I never saw Q as—as dangerous as antifa, but antifa gets to run wild on the internet,” the Fox host concluded, failing to note an FBI memo released last year warning against the domestic terrorist threats posed by QAnon fanatics after several were arrested, including one who was detained by police for blocking Hoover Dam traffic with an armored truck while packing handguns and assault-style rifles. “What do you think of what’s going on there?”
After the segment received blowback, Watters maintained that he was just asking questions. “While discussing the double standard of big tech censorship, I mentioned the conspiracy group QAnon, which I don’t support or believe in,” he told Axios in a statement over the weekend. “My comments should not be mistaken for giving credence to this fringe platform.”
Nor was Fox the only conservative network to espouse a conspiracy theory promoted largely by Trump supporters. Judy Mikovits—an ex-cancer researcher behind a video series called “Plandemic,” which claims COVID-19 was engineered to enrich the likes of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases chief Anthony Fauci and Bill Gates—appeared in a segment hosted on America This Week, a Sinclair Broadcast Group program. (When it was first released in May, “Plandemic” quickly went viral on the parts of the internet trafficked by America’s crazy aunts and uncles; one of its most popular claims is that wearing a face mask “literally activates your own virus” and makes you “sick from your own reactivated coronavirus expressions.”) During the segment, which was filmed five weeks ago and posted online over the weekend but had its TV debut canceled by Sinclair after backlash, Mikovits promoted comparable claims to ex-Fox personality and America This Week host Eric Bolling, including her belief that Fauci assisted in creating and purchasing COVID-19.
The segment was slated to air over the weekend, but after multiple outlets reported on that plan, it was pushed back to be “reworked to provide better context,” per a statement Bolling gave to the Washington Examiner. In additional comments, Bolling told CNN that he does not “second-guess my producers and bookers” and acknowledged to the Examiner that he was “caught off guard by some of Dr. Mikovits’s claims. At no point did I agree with her. Further, I brought on another doctor to debunk the theories she espoused. I repeat: I do not agree with Dr. Mikovits.” Incidentally, Fauci, the man Mikovits has reportedly blamed for contributing to the deaths of millions amid the HIV/AIDS crisis, appeared on Bolling’s show for a 12-minute interview in April.