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“No Applicable Privilege Or Immunity” For Sean Hannity — Constitutional Law Expert Weighs In On 1/6 Summons

“No Applicable Privilege Or Immunity” For Sean Hannity — Constitutional Law Expert Weighs In On 1/6 Summons

Sean Hannity is among the Fox News hosts whose messages to Mark Meadows, turned over by the former Chief of Staff as part of the January 6th investigation, have brought him into the spotlight. He’s now being asked to speak to the House Select Committee to share what he knows about the events of the day — and he’s lawyered up.

Photo by NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP via Getty Images

According to Axios, Hannity’s attorney, Jay Sekulow, has responded, saying that this would “raise serious constitutional issues including First Amendment concerns regarding freedom of the press.”

Legal experts who are not representing Hannity disagree.

George Conway, a conservative attorney who has worked in or adjacent to politics for decades, tweeted Tuesday to deride Hannity and his claims.

“Hannity’s not a journalist,” Conway said, adding that the Fox host was clearly not acting in a journalistic capacity in text messages with the Trump White House, in which he discussed whether January 6th would go down as Trump expected.

Boosting that view on Wednesday, constitutional law professor Laurence Tribe added his own understanding from a legal viewpoint, saying that a legitimate investigation could not be blocked by a mere claim of journalistic protections.

“Journalism” isn’t a magic wand you can use to block otherwise legitimate investigations. Not even the right to protect his sources [entitles] Hannity to refuse to testify about his advice to Trump surrounding 1/6. There’s no applicable privilege or immunity.”

Hannity has previously expressed concern about what his texts being exposed to investigation could mean, saying last month that he’s “had to give up email” as the investigation progressed.

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