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Florida Republicans Pass Bill Allowing Trans Kids to Be Removed From Their Families

This is just the latest anti-trans bill passed in the state, but it’s among the most dangerous.


Florida’s House of Representatives passed a bill Wednesday that would let the state take transgender minors away from their families if they are receiving gender-affirming care.

The measure passed by a vote of 82–31. A previous version of the bill passed the Senate earlier this month by a vote of 27–12, and the amended version now goes back to the other chamber for a final vote. Governor Ron DeSantis has previously expressed support for the bill and will likely sign it into law if it passes.

If it becomes law, the bill will allow the state to take custody of a child if they have been “subjected to or [are] threatened with being subjected to” gender-affirming care, which includes puberty blockers and hormone replacement therapy. Florida courts could modify custody agreements from a different state if the minor is likely to receive gender-affirming care in that second state. The text refers to gender-affirming care as “sex-reassignment prescriptions or procedures” and qualifies this care as a form of “physical harm.”

Medical facilities would have to give the state Department of Health a signed attestation that they neither provide gender-affirming care to patients nor refer people to providers that do. Their medical license renewal is contingent upon sending in this attestation. Medicaid funds could not be used to pay for gender-affirming care, even though the majority of people do not use Medicaid to pay for such treatments.

Minors who have already begun transitioning will be allowed to continue to do so, but they are no longer allowed to receive care via telehealth, including for prescriptions. Their doctors have to tell them about the “risks” of gender-affirming care, and patients will have to sign an informed consent form, which the ACLU has pointed out often contains misinformation. Doctors who violate any of these new rules could be charged with a felony.

“We’re supposed to be working to keep Floridians healthy, safe, and prosperous. We are not supposed to be here to pass ambiguous bills and take away a child’s ability to be healthy and safe,” said Democrat Rita Harris during the debate.

“Florida ranks fortieth in health care for children. You want to protect children? … And yet here we are, taking away health care from children.”

Republicans across the country have introduced bills targeting gender-affirming care, insisting that by doing so, they are protecting children. Instead, lawmakers are criminalizing LGBTQ people of all ages and putting them at risk of real harm.

And Florida seems to be leading the charge. Republicans have introduced bill after bill targeting LGBTQ people and openly admitted their goal is to erase the community from existence. A little more than an hour earlier, the House passed a bill banning drag performances, which heads to DeSantis’s desk.

House GOP’s Debt Ceiling “Plan” Calls for Medicaid and SNAP Work Requirements

The Republican proposal would fail at addressing the debt but would succeed in making people’s lives worse in more ways than one.

Kevin McCarthy
Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times/Getty Images

Republicans have introduced a debt ceiling plan that really just increases social, environmental, and financial costs.

On Wednesday, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy revealed a GOP debt ceiling bill that would instate work requirements for Medicaid and food stamps, reduce funding for the Internal Revenue Service, repeal green energy programs, and block President Biden’s student loan forgiveness plan. 

The bill is not even guaranteed to pass the Republican-controlled House and has little chance of passing the Senate. But McCarthy’s bill is less about getting something done than trying to compel Democrats to join Republicans’ push to cut spending on services essential to hundreds of millions of people in this country.

On Medicaid, Republicans want recipients to fulfill certain income and work thresholds. If they don’t, states could kick them off their health insurance plans. A Congressional Budget Office report estimated that Medicaid work requirements would cause two million people to lose health coverage.

Republicans also want work requirements for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP. Adults without children must fulfill work requirements up to the age of 56, overturning current law that has the threshold at age 49. Not only are such cuts punitive in nature, but they effectively leave people more vulnerable to precarity. The less we support people preemptively, the higher the costs will be if they fall through the cracks.

On the proposed IRS cuts, the only thing conservatives would be “saving” is bloated tax evaders. A CBO analysis found that the IRS program would in fact reduce the deficit by $120 billion over the next decade (as in, the Republican proposal would add to the deficit).

The proposal also calls to repeal numerous green-related provisions of the Inflation Reduction Act, like tax credits for electric vehicles. And as we have seen, the more slowly we transition from fossil fuels to a greener economy, the more climate disaster we will face and, consequently, the more astronomical the human and financial cost will be. The conservative insistence on appeasing the fossil fuel industry and obstructing climate-friendly solutions is not only deeply crooked but fiscally irresponsible.

Such a dynamic is just as pressing when considering that the bill blocks Biden’s plan to relieve 43 million people from crippling student debt. These are millions of working people who are trying their best to bloom and live more whole and productive lives but are hindered by the burden of such soulless debt. In the short term, Republicans may frame their ideas as cost-saving, but in reality, such measures will increase medium- and long-term costs on society.

All this to say, the GOP proposal is unserious on a few counts. For one, it is self-evidently not concerned with coming to fruition; the primary conservative goal is to egg Biden and Democrats on to support cuts, lest the government default. But moreover, the bill is not about “saving” at all; it encourages money to be stolen from the government by tax-evading elites who flout the IRS, it promotes fiscal irresponsibility by way of encouraging wasteful and toxic fossil fuel reliance, and it further welcomes future social and economic costs by ways of leaving—and pressing—a boot on millions of people.

Florida Passes Anti-Drag Ban So Extreme It Could Ban All Pride Parades

The bill is so vaguely worded that Pride organizers are already worried about celebrations this year.

Sean Drakes/Getty Images
Celebrated drag personality and Palace ambassador Tiffany Fantasia co-hosts the fifteenth annual Miami Beach Pride Parade, wearing a custom dress that declares “Drag Is Not a Crime,” on April 16.

Florida passed a bill Wednesday that could stop all Pride parades and festivals in the state.

The measure passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 82–32 and is now headed to the desk of Governor Ron DeSantis, who is expected to sign it into law. The bill passed the Senate last week by a vote of 28–12.

If it becomes law, the measure would prohibit government entities and employees from issuing permits to organizations that may hold “adult live performances” in the presence of minors. Anyone that does can be charged with a misdemeanor.

The measure would also ban businesses from allowing minors to attend an “adult live performance,” which is defined as a show performed in front of a live audience that “depicts or simulates nudity, sexual conduct, sexual excitement, or specific sexual activities … lewd conduct, or the lewd exposure of prosthetic or imitation genitals or breasts.” Any business that breaks this law will face a fine of up to $10,000 and could lose its license.

“This bill is a blatant attack on free expression, parental rights, and choice,” said Democratic Representative Lavon Bracy Davis. “What are you afraid of? What is it about drag queens that terrify you? Pray tell, why are we censoring artistic expression?”

“I know this chamber has shown quite the concern for impersonation. Well right now, we are impersonating democracy.”

Democrat Fentrice Driskell pointed out that Florida already has laws in place to protect children from being exposed to obscene content, the main argument from the bill’s backers. “Even though the plain text of the bill may not say ‘drag’ ... there’s a greater context happening here, and we all know it,” she said.

Her colleague Daryl Campbell warned that Republicans may currently be targeting the LGBTQ community. But “for those watching, they will come after you when it’s in their interest.”

If DeSantis signs the bill into law, it will go into effect immediately, a little more than a month before Pride Month begins in June. Festivals such as St. Pete Pride in St. Petersburg, the state’s largest Pride celebration, could lose their permits.

The measure is so vaguely worded that Pride organizers in the state have already expressed concern. “We do believe that this might be the last Pride as you know it,” Patrick Gevas, one of the organizers of Miami Beach Pride, told NBC 6.

Critics have slammed the bill as being overly broad, which could have unintended consequences. Republicans backing it have admitted that the measure would prevent performances of The Rocky Horror Picture Show and the musical Hair.

But the measure will also have an intended consequence: “erasing” LGBTQ people from existence. Florida Republican Representative Randy Fine said last week that if passing the bill “means erasing a community because you have to target children, then, damn right, we ought to do it!”

The ACLU slammed the bill when it first passed the Senate as “an extreme governmental overreach of power.” “This is not democracy. This is not freedom,” the group said in a statement.

Florida is the latest state to advance a (vaguely worded, extreme) measure attacking drag performances, which have become a particular target for the right wing in recent years. In March, Tennessee became the first state to pass a law banning drag performances, but the measure was blocked by a judge before it could go into effect on the grounds that it was overly broad and violated free speech rights.

DeSantis has also set his sights on drag performances, revoking the liquor licenses for multiple businesses that have hosted drag shows—even though undercover agents sent to one show “did not witness any lewd acts.”

The Latest Wrinkle in Republicans’ Quest to Ban the Abortion Pill

A new lawsuit against the FDA seeks to preserve access to the pill, regardless of what the lower courts have said.

Probal Rashid/LightRocket/Getty Images

The maker of the generic version of the abortion pill mifepristone sued the Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday in an effort to keep the drug accessible nationwide.

A complicated legal battle over mifepristone is playing out in the U.S. judicial system. A Texas federal judge ruled two weeks ago that the drug, one of the medications used to induce an abortion, had been improperly approved by the FDA and should be yanked from the U.S. market. The Department of Justice appealed the decision, first to the Fifth Circuit Court, which only partially stayed the ruling. The Justice Department then appealed the case to the Supreme Court, which issued a temporary administrative stay.

The Fifth Circuit’s ruling, if upheld, will judicially nullify the Abbreviated New Drug Application, or ANDA, for the pills made by GenBioPro, which the FDA approved in 2019. GenBioPro says its pills are used in about two-thirds of the 500,000 medication abortions that happen in the United States each year.

GenBioPro sued the FDA for indicating in court filings that if the Supreme Court does not intervene, then the agency will abide by the lower rulings and pull GenBioPro’s drug from the market. The company argued that doing so would violate laws about the process for withdrawing a drug’s approval.

“In addition to the severe harm to GenBioPro’s commercial viability from suspension of its ANDA, catastrophic harm also results to members of the public, including doctors and patients, who have developed extensive reliance interests in the approval and availability of GenBioPro’s mifepristone,” the company said in the lawsuit.

GenBioPro also said that it has repeatedly asked the FDA for assurances that its approval status will be protected, but the FDA has not responded. “Because of the FDA decision and the enforcement threat and uncertainty it has created, GenBioPro is suffering irreparable financial and reputational harm, severely threatening its core business model and commercial viability,” GenBioPro said.

The GenBioPro lawsuit is an attempt to keep mifepristone available, regardless of whether the Supreme Court decides to stay or uphold the lower court rulings. The nation’s high court is expected to issue a decision Wednesday.

Medication abortions make up more than half of all abortions performed in the United States. These drugs can be ordered online and delivered via mail, making them a key resource for people who live in states that have cracked down on abortion access since Roe v. Wade was overturned last summer.

Elise Stefanik Likes to Talk About Crime Until It Happens in Her Own District

A 20-year-old woman was shot and killed after her friend turned into the wrong driveway. That was in Republican Representative Elise Stefanik’s district.

Elise Stefanik
Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

On Saturday night, a group of friends had driven up the wrong driveway as they were searching for another friend’s house. And as they turned their vehicles around, the owner of the home shot at them.

The 65-year-old homeowner, Kevin Monahan, fired two shots and killed 20-year-old Kaylin Gillis, authorities said—for the simple offense of being in the passenger seat of a vehicle that pulled into a wrong driveway before promptly turning around. The violent shooting occurred in upstate New York, in the district represented by Republican Representative Elise Stefanik.

On Tuesday, Stefanik tweeted a Notes-app-style statement that her “heart breaks for the tragedy of the loss of Kaylin Gillis’ young life” and that she fully supports efforts “to ensure justice is served.” But within the hour, Stefanik went back to her regularly scheduled programming of whipping up outrage about crime in New York City.

Stefanik has spent much of her career fearmongering about crime, all the more so amid the Manhattan district attorney’s indictment of twice-impeached former President Donald Trump. She, along with other Republicans, has attempted to discredit Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg by trying to frame New York City as a bastion of crime.

Stefanik, not even a member of the House Judiciary Committee, was invited to join a hearing Monday that falsely framed New York as awash in crime. The New York City crime narrative is a popular one, but as witnesses in the hearing pointed out, New York City is safer than many of the places House Republicans leading the smear campaign come from.

The campaign has been all the more vacuous given that Republicans have put forth no actual solutions to crime that may be taking place, other than building more jails and throwing more people in them. Seldom have they genuinely pursued a broader policy vision they pretend to care about, whether it be improving people’s mental health or combating social alienation.

Meanwhile, Stefanik and other Republicans have blocked any attempt to prevent shootings like the one in her district or in Kansas City, Missouri, where 16-year-old Ralph Yarl was shot after accidentally ringing the wrong doorbell. After the Nashville school shooting last month, Stefanik called the move for gun control “overly political.” Never mind that more than 160 mass shootings have taken place just this year in America.

Republicans have made it easier, again and again, to access guns in a country ravaged by mass shootings. They have fomented social distrust, in a society where hate and divisiveness have become as American as apple pie.

And in Stefanik’s weak-hearted chicanery, she embodies precisely how hollow it all is. Instead of confronting why our society has produced such anger and why that anger is allowed to so easily access weapons of killing, Stefanik and Republicans are instead inflaming that anger and making sure it is as armed as possible.

Florida Expands “Don’t Say Gay” Law Through High School

The law bans classroom discussion on sexual orientation or gender identity.

David Dee Delgado/Getty Images

Florida’s Board of Education voted Wednesday to dramatically expand the state’s infamous “Don’t Say Gay” law through high school.

Governor Ron DeSantis signed the original law, officially named the Parental Rights in Education law, in March 2022. The law bans schools from teaching students in kindergarten through third grade about sexual orientation or gender identity, arguing that those topics are not age- or developmentally appropriate.

The amendment approved Wednesday expands that ban. Instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity was originally banned from pre-kindergarten to third grade. Now, “for Grades 4 through 12, instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity is prohibited unless such instruction is either expressly required by state academic standards … or is part of a reproductive health course or health lesson,” the amendment states.

Teachers who provide such instruction anyway risk losing their teaching license. Parents can also decide to remove their student from any health classes.

“It was NEVER, EVER, EVER about ‘protecting children,’” warned former Democratic state Representative Carlos Guillermo Smith, ahead of the vote.

The LGBTQ rights group Equality Florida slammed the measure after it was passed. “The lust for government censorship is insatiable,” the group said.

The proposal will go into effect after a procedural notice period, which lasts about a month, an Education Department spokesperson told the AP.

Florida is cracking down on discourse around sexuality and gender identity, often in ways that are overly broad and extreme. A Republican representative introduced a bill in February that would bar any kind of sex education in public schools until sixth grade, and then allow abstinence-only sex ed in the grades after. The bill, which passed the House and is in the Senate, is so vague that it would also prohibit younger students from discussing their periods with school officials.

DeSantis is widely expected to announce a 2024 presidential run, and he has made clear he is waging war on anything he deems “woke.” He’s been in a weird legal battle with Disney World for a year, since the company’s then chairman condemned the “Don’t Say Gay” law. He has promised to defund diversity, equity, and inclusion programs on college campuses; limited what can be taught or read in schools; and had his allies force out the president of a liberally minded college.

Tennessee Lowered Permitless-Carry Age on the Day of the Nashville Shooting

Younger Tennesseeans will not be prosecuted for carrying a gun without a permit.

Jon Cherry/Bloomberg/Getty Images

After a mass shooting, one might reasonably expect a society to enact some sort of legislation or change to prevent such a thing from happening again. Imagine almost the exact opposite: loosening gun laws on the same day as a mass shooting. That, in fact, is what happened in Tennessee.

On March 27, a school shooting in Nashville left three children and three adults dead. Also on March 27, a Tennessee judge approved an agreement that would allow 18 to 20-year-old Tennesseans the right to carry a gun without a permit.

The decision came in response to an out-of-state firearms group that was suing Tennessee, arguing it is somehow unconstitutional to prevent 18-year-olds from carrying guns sans permits.

And in late January, Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti decided to settle the case, agreeing that his office would not prosecute people between the ages of 18 and 20 who carry guns without permits. The proposal was officially approved on the same day as the Nashville shooting.

“It is the 16, 17, 18 and 19-year-olds killing and doing the shooting, wreaking havoc,” mother and retired U.S. Army member Eboni Anderson told Action News 5. “And the leaders are … just saying … ‘Go ahead … leave [guns] on a silver platter and go kill yourselves. We’re aware of this.’ I can only hope the younger generations are aware they’re giving us the guns because they want us to kill each other.”

Skrmetti’s decision had gone through with little awareness, even on the side of elected officials; Action News 5 reported that numerous leaders did not know the change until they had reached out to them for comment.

The weakening of gun safety provisions in Tennessee should not be seen as an aberration. Last week, Tennessee Republicans shut down a “red flag” law that could have prevented the shooting in the first place. They had shut down a similar bill two years ago as well. Tennessee Republican Governor Bill Lee made permitless carry legal in 2021, and his fellow state Republicans have been working to expand the permitless-carry privilege to include all guns, including the likes of AR-15 rifles and shotguns. The legislation would also have Tennessee recognize any out-of-state permit as valid “as if it is a firearm carry permit issued in this state.”

As of 2020, Tennessee was among the top-10 deadliest states in the country from firearms. And in the aftermath of a devastating mass shooting and yet another data point in the over 160 American mass shootings of 2023, Tennessee Republicans show no sign of wanting to change that statistic.

Fox Faces Another, Much Bigger Defamation Lawsuit Than Dominion’s

Smartmatic USA says it “remains committed” to holding Fox accountable.

A truck with a digital sign saying, "RUPERT MURDOCH KNEW" and "FOX KNEW" drives on the road. On the sign is also the website ""
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Fox just lost a decent chunk of money, and their legal headaches are far from over.

On Tuesday, Fox Corporation settled a $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit brought by Dominion Voting Systems to the tune of $787.5 million. The monthslong case that revealed streams of proof that Fox hosts had knowingly peddled lies about the 2020 election came to an anticlimactic end on the trial’s opening day, as the two entities chose to settle and stop the case from advancing.

But while Fox was able to buy off any further embarrassment in the Dominion case they still face a whopping $2.7 billion lawsuit brought by Smartmatic USA, another voting systems company. And after the Dominion settlement announcement, Smartmatic said it “remains committed” to holding Fox accountable.

Smartmatic’s massive defamation lawsuit is based on similar claims that Fox falsely accused Smartmatic of helping to rig the election toward Joe Biden; Smartmatic alleges too that Fox knowingly lied about the company in order to boost network ratings and appease Trump supporters.

In particular, the voting system company alleges that Fox made “over 100 false statements and implications about the company.”

In February, a Manhattan court rejected Fox’s attempt to dismiss the lawsuit, 5–0. The case proceeds against Fox News, Fox Business host Maria Baritromo, Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani, and former Fox Business host Lou Dobbs.

It’s almost humorous to think of Fox appealing to the courts to throw out a case similar to one they just settled for nearly $800 million. After Dominion settled its case with Fox Tuesday, Smartmatic was ready to connect its own fight to the case that left Fox down hundreds of millions of dollars and exposed some of the organization’s many lies.

“Dominion’s litigation exposed some of the misconduct and damage caused by Fox’s disinformation campaign. Smartmatic will expose the rest,” said Smartmatic attorney J. Erik Connolly. “Smartmatic remains committed to clearing its name, recouping the significant damage done to the company, and holding Fox accountable for undermining democracy.”

God Didn’t Want Ralph Yarl to Be Shot

Every detail in the story of the shooting of a Black teenager is worse than the last.

Christopher Smith for The Washington Post/Getty Images
Sixteen-year-old Kansas City high school student Ralph Yarl was shot on the front porch of this home when he went to the house by mistake in an attempt to pick up his twin siblings.

“God’s country.”

That is what attorney Lee Merritt says locals call the neighborhood in which 16-year-old Ralph Yarl was viciously shot after accidentally ringing the doorbell of the wrong address.

If such a place is indeed “God’s country,” we have perverted what it means for something to be godly at all. And if there is indeed a God, or gods, we have disrespected what virtue or moral ambition they could symbolize. Because every single excruciating detail of what transpired in Kansas City, Missouri, just days ago reveals a society unfit to be hailed as something sacred.

On Thursday, 16-year-old Yarl, who is Black, was attempting to pick up his siblings in Kansas City. He walked up to the doorstep of what he thought was the home he was sent to. He mistook Northeast 115th Terrace to be the address he should’ve gone to, Northeast 115th Street. And the honest mistake, a benign mix-up anyone could have made, proved to be costly.

Upon ringing the doorbell of the home, Yarl was allegedly shot point-blank by Andrew Daniel Lester, an 84-year-old white man.

After Yarl had rung the doorbell, Lester said he opened the interior door and, without exchanging any words, shot the young boy—right in the head. And as if the first shot was not enough, Lester apparently shot the boy again when he was on the ground.

“Don’t come around here,” Lester reportedly said after Yarl was somehow able to get up and flee.

Despite the shots ringing out at 10 p.m., certainly not a time of much loud rambunction, Yarl apparently had to run to three different homes before a neighbor finally agreed to help him. It somehow gets worse: A neighbor only “agreed” to help after Yarl heeded commands to lie on the ground with his hands up, according to a GoFundMe set up by his aunt, Faith Spoonmore.

A boy shot in the head and arm, running around yelling for help, was still somehow seen with suspicion before “earning” the right to assistance.

One of the three neighbors, who remained anonymous, said she called 911 after Ralph came to her door; she says she was directed by the 911 operator to stay inside because the shooter’s location was unknown. Among the only nuggets of faith in the story is her reportedly going outside eventually to help Ralph stave off the bleeding, unable to heed the directive to stay inside.

“This is somebody’s child. I had to clean blood off of my door, off of my railing. That was someone’s child’s blood,” she told CNN. “I’m a mom … this is not OK.”

Cleo Nagbe, Yarl’s mother, told CBS that since the incident, her son has been replaying the situation constantly as he slowly recovers, the “residual effect” of the shooting plaguing him.

Nagbe says that Yarl is able to communicate “when he feels like it.” But “mostly he just sits there and stares and the buckets of tears just roll down his eyes.”

Lester has been charged with assault in the first degree and armed criminal action; it is unclear why a man who shot a boy point-blank, once in the head and once in the arm after he was already on the ground, has not been charged with something like attempted murder.

The disparities of our justice system will be something to watch; and of course, the wish is less about a carceral response for any one individual than it is about equal justice for everyone. Yet it is shocking, for instance, that Lester was released after just two hours of being in custody last week; he was released once again on Tuesday less than two hours after surrendering to authorities.

Such an appalling case, and the injustices in its aftermath, is backdropped by two separate cases of people, one Black, one white, being left to die in their jail cells while being held on lesser battery charges. On Monday, a grand jury decided that a group of police officers who shot an unarmed fleeing Black man almost 50 times would not face consequences. Another young woman, who was white, was also shot dead after accidentally pulling into the wrong driveway on Saturday.

All of which is to say that our society is a violent one. Racism undergirds much of this violence, but the violence is so deeply embedded within our social veins of distrusting anger, our structural veins of carceral coldness, that people of all backgrounds are implicated.

Such a society is one that has no capacity to deem any part of it to be “God’s country.” If there is a God, or gods, the compassion and moral commitments that we may derive from them are ambitions we have much more work to bend toward.

No Amount of Money Erases What We Already Learned About Fox in the Dominion Case

A settlement doesn’t make all the other revelations go away, no matter how much money it is.

A crowd of people at a press conference. Someone in the background holds a sign that reads "Fox is guilty."
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
Lawyers representing Dominion Voting Systems talk to reporters outside the Leonard Williams Justice Center following a settlement with FOX News in Delaware Superior Court on April 18.

Dominion Voting Systems and Fox Corporation may have settled their lawsuit out of court, but nothing Fox does will erase what we’ve learned about it along the way.

After a months-long legal battle, Dominion and Fox settled for $787.5 million, in what was originally a $1.6 billion defamation suit. The decision was anticlimactic at best, as people had geared up for an unprecedented trial process.

Technically, per the American Bar Association, “a settlement doesn’t usually state that anyone was right or wrong in the case.” So even though Fox paid up, they aren’t officially admitting wrongdoing. But as Senator Mitt Romney told HuffPost reporter Igor Bobic, “Clearly you don’t agree to pay someone three-quarters of a billion dollars unless you think there’s a real risk you’re going to lose.”

And all that money won’t take back what Dominion has already revealed about Fox. Court documents show that Fox News hosts and executives never believed the conspiracy theories about the 2020 election that they were spreading.

Text messages and deposition excerpts show that hosts, including Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham, knew the election conspiracies were false and that Donald Trump’s lawyers weren’t credible, but they spread the conspiracies and invited the lawyers on air anyway. Carlson, who has repeatedly fawned over Trump on his show, even texted someone he was looking forward to ignoring Trump. “I hate him passionately,” Carlson said of the former president.

Fox owner Rupert Murdoch admitted under oath that he knew his media organization was spreading lies, but he continued to let hosts spout falsehoods and have Trump team members on as guests. A Fox News producer sued the company, alleging executives let the lies stand because they were good for business and coerced her into giving misleading testimony in the Dominion lawsuit.

But in a statement released after the decision was made to settle, Fox said they “acknowledge the Court’s rulings finding certain claims about Dominion to be false.” Fox only admitted that some of the things they said about Dominion were false, but recall that the court already ruled that everything they said about Dominion was false.

“The evidence developed in this civil proceeding demonstrates that [it] is CRYSTAL clear that none of the Statements relating to Dominion about the 2020 election are true,” a judge wrote in a decision last month, allowing the case to proceed to trial.

Fox, for its part, has made no mention of making an on-air retraction or apology about the Dominion falsehoods.

“Fox is about to burn brighter and hotter,” warned Media Matters president Angelo Carusone.

“Fox didn’t just get away with murder; they basically got a license to kill,” he said. “Unless we cut off their inflated guaranteed revenue from their wildly overpriced cable carriage fees, Fox is gonna use the license.”