Fox News correspondent-at-large Geraldo Rivera saw his dream of running for the Senate in Ohio as a moderate Republican go down in flames when the network allegedly told him to decide whether he was a journalist or a politician.
On Wednesday, Rivera announced on Twitter that he was pondering a run for Senator Rob Portman’s seat after he announced he would not run for re-election in 2022. He even came up with a cringy slogan for his campaign: “Geraldo for Ohio, from the great river to the Great Lake, I will fight for you.”
“I decided to make my announcement now because I have made up my mind,” Portman stated when announcing he would not run again. “Over the next two years, I look forward to being able to focus all my energy on legislation and the challenges our country faces rather than on fundraising and campaigning.”
After hearing about Rivera’s possible political aspirations, Fox News reportedly pounced, asking the pundit exactly what his plans were. In the space of a day or so, Rivera went from talking about a Senate run straight back to being a talking head at Fox News. He didn’t have much choice evidently because the two don’t mix journalistically or ethically.
(Video Credit: Fox & Friends)
Steve Doocy put Rivera on the spot: “What is the deal? You made news earlier this week suggesting you might run for office, but then I read yesterday, you apparently sobered up.” Rivera tried to laugh the question off. He stated on Hannity’s show Thursday night that he would not run for office, but for a moment thought he could make progress in a purple state like Ohio as a moderate Republican.
“Well, you know what happens? You wake up, you have a dream and the thing is you probably should keep your dream to yourself,” Rivera told Doocy. “Instead I started talking to Erica about it and we both got very enthusiastic.
“The reaction, the initial vibe was great but it was also much more overwhelming than I ever expected,” he revealed. “Fox freaked out, you know, said pick a lane, are you a journalist or a politician and I wasn’t ready to, you know, jump off my current turnstile, so, instead I had to kind of embarrass myself and say never mind.”
— Geraldo Rivera (@GeraldoRivera) March 10, 2021
“After a 36-hour pondering whirlwind I’ve decided not to seek public office,” Rivera tweeted on Thursday. “Erica and I deeply appreciate the good wishes of those cheering the idea.”
After a 36-hour pondering whirlwind I’ve decided not to seek public office. Erica and I deeply appreciate the good wishes of those cheering the idea.
— Geraldo Rivera (@GeraldoRivera) March 11, 2021
The Cincinnati Enquirer brutally nailed it: “Much like when talk show host Geraldo Rivera opened an empty Al Capone’s vault in the 1980s, his brief flirtation with a Senate run amounted to nothing.”
Rivera did leave the political door open on “Fox & Friends,” noting that if he had kept his mouth shut and considered his run for the Senate in six months it might have been a different story.
It would appear that for now the two Republican contenders, former state treasurer Josh Mandel and former state party chairman Jane Timken, have nothing to worry about.
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