Fox News

Fox News Accidentally Lets Anti-ICE Democrat Speak to President Trump

Fox News hosts thought they were speaking with Ann Kirkpatrick. They were mistaken.


|||Screenshot via YouTube/Barbara L'Italien
Screenshot via YouTube/Barbara L'Italien

A scheduling mix-up caused a pro–Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) segment on Fox & Friends to be anything but.

This morning, the show's hosts introduced congressional candidate and former Arizona Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick, a Democrat whose outspoken support for ICE has put her at odds with many in her party. After introducing the former congresswoman, hosts were surprised to hear a voice reply, "Good morning, I'm actually here to speak directly to Donald Trump."

The voice belonged not to Kirkpatrick, but to Barbara L'Italien, a Massachussetts state senator and a Democratic candidate for Congress. As L'Italien continued her statements, it quickly became clear that she would not be delivering a message in favor of ICE.

"I feel that what's happening at the border is wrong. I'm a mother of four and I believe that separating kids from their parents is illegal and inhumane," she said of the Trump administration's child separation policy. She then introduced herself by name.

Host Jillian Mele disagreed, saying that the children were already reunited with their families. While Mele's premise is partly correct, the administration has only reunited a some of the separated families and previously missed a deadline set by a judge.

Host Rob Schmitt asked for L'Italien's identity as she said her name once again. Her screen then disappeared, cutting the interview short.

Following the appearance, L'Italien tweeted and read the full statement she'd hope to give on air. She later explained that she made it to the interview after Fox News mistakenly reached out to her campaign staffers, believing them to be Kirkpatrick's staffers.

"Over the process of getting the interview scheduled, they repeatedly showed very little grasp on the facts, down to whether or not Ann Kirkpatrick was still in Congress," a source in L'Italien's campaign told ThinkProgress. "Fox News is where you go when you want to talk to Donald Trump, and Barbara felt she had an obligation to her constituents to take advantage of that opportunity. But this would not have happened to an actual news station. Fox's lack of attention to the facts normally is a disaster for the country. It just so happened that today it was embarrassing for them."