Fox News reportedly refused to air an advertisement created by a progressive PAC that featured testimonials from law enforcement officers about their treatment by the pro-Trump mob that stormed the US Capitol on January 6.
"We couldn't have fathomed in our wildest imaginations that even a Fox News would reject an ad that simply condemns the insurrection, and condemns people who support the insurrection," Ben Meiselas, a co-founder of the PAC MeidasTouch, told the Los Angeles Times. "What Fox has really become is a fascist echo chamber gatekeeper for their base."
The advertisement features testimony from some of the law enforcement officers who responded to the riot.
"It's been very difficult seeing elected officials and other individuals whitewash the events of that day or downplay what happened," said DC Metropolitan Police Officer Michael Fanone in the advertisement in a clip that was originally from an interview on CNN.
"I experienced the most brutal, savage hand-to-hand combat of my entire life," he added.
During the riot, prosecutors say Fanone had a heart attack after he was shot several times with a stun gun, dragged down steps, and beaten with a flagpole, as Insider previously reported.
—MeidasTouch.com (@MeidasTouch) June 6, 2021
Capitol Police Captain Carneysha Mendoza is also featured in the advertisement, speaking about the chemical burns to her face she experienced. That clip was lifted from her testimony before the Senate in February.
The advertisement ends with on-screen text that reads "the GOP betrayed America."
Meiselas and his brothers, Brett and Jordan, who founded MeidasTouch last year, told the LA Times they had placed the ad buy with Fox News last week but were told Friday that the network would not air it. They said they had never in the past had an advertisement rejected by Fox News.
A spokesperson for Fox News told Insider that claim was false and said the network had turned down previous advertisements from the PAC.
The progressive organization posted the minute-long advertisement to its Twitter page and said it planned to air the advertisement on other networks.
The PAC told the LA Times it had paid Fox News $185,000 to run the advertisement from June 6 to June 15 during its programming.
"The fact they want to cancel and censor the voices of law enforcement who bravely guarded the Capitol. It's the height of hypocrisy, and it's un-American," said Brett Meiselas.
In the months that followed the riot that resulted in five deaths, some Republicans have increasingly attempted to downplay its severity with some comparing rioters to tourists. Republicans in the Senate last month torpedoed an attempt to create an independent commission to investigate the January 6 insurrection.
Earlier this year, MeidasTouch made headlines for running an advertisement that compared former Republican Sens. Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue the "Grinches of Georgia."