Tudor Dixon’s Fox interview shows how Trump’s effort to overturn 2020 is


“Real America’s Voice” is one of a number of streaming services that aims to gobble up Fox News’s audience from the right. That there was untapped demand for media that sat closer to the fringe than Fox generally traveled was made clear in the years before 2016, with organizations such as Breitbart News building substantial audiences in that space. This was Donald Trump’s campaign strategy that year, in fact: run as the voice of that further-right space, a strategy that worked well for him.

The region is now fairly crowded. There are fringier outlets competing with Fox on cable itself, notably Newsmax and (for now) One America News. On the internet, even more bespoke “channels” have been created to carve out part of the market: MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell’s Frank, for example, or Real America’s Voice — a “network” focused heavily on being the home to Stephen K. Bannon’s conspiratorial daily radio show.

Real America’s Voice also once employed an anchor named Tudor Dixon. And just as Real America’s Voice and networks like Newsmax use the aesthetics and tactics of cable news to mask or muddy the extent of their political activism, Dixon over the weekend demonstrated how Trump’s effort to overturn the results of the 2020 election gets sanitized for broader public consumption.

This is useful for Dixon as she seeks election as governor of Michigan.

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Shortly after receiving Trump’s endorsement in that race, she appeared for an interview with anchor Bret Baier on “Fox News Sunday.” Baier — increasingly the network’s most vocal critic of Trump’s post-2020 behavior — asked Dixon whether she thought the election had been stolen.

“Well, it’s certainly a concern to a lot of folks here in Michigan because of the way the election was handled by our secretary of state,” Dixon replied. “She did things that were considered unlawful by a judge. We have to make sure our elections are secure and what happened in 2020 doesn’t happen again.”

There are three things happening here that are worth exploring.

The first is the suggestion that “a lot of folks” are concerned about the election, which serves as a rationale for suggesting that there was something to be concerned about. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) helped pioneer this bit of self-fulfilling rhetoric when he announced his plans to object to the election results prior to Jan. 6, 2021. It’s endlessly useful: stoke fears and then cite fears as a reason to stoke them further. It’s detached from the reality, which is that Trump lost Michigan by a massive margin (as Baier would soon note).

The second is the assertion that the sitting (Democratic) secretary of state did things “considered unlawful.” The implication for the casual viewer is that the election results were suspect because of some sketchy activity by partisans. The reality is that the secretary of state issued guidance to elections administrators that aimed to reduce the number of absentee ballots rejected for signature mismatches, guidance that a judge determined she offered without going…

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