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Fox News hosts hit back at Trump after new attacks on Megyn Kelly

A slew of Fox News hosts are hitting back at Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump after he reignited his feud with network anchor Megyn Kelly.

{mosads}Trump, who appeared to patch things up with Fox News after bashing Kelly and the network for days following the first GOP debate, resumed his fight Monday in a series of late-night tweets.

In his tweets, Trump said Kelly “must have had a terrible vacation” and was “off her game,” following her 10-day break, retweeting followers commenting on the female anchor’s looks, including one labeling her a “bimbo.”

Anchor Bret Baier, who hosted the Aug. 6 debate alongside Kelly and “Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace, took to Twitter like other colleagues to tell the celebrity real estate tycoon to move on:

“Hannity” host Sean Hannity, who interviewed Trump after the initial dust-up, advised his “friend” to focus elsewhere and leave Kelly alone.

Hosts of two Fox News morning shows, Brian Kilmeade of “Fox & Friends,” where Trump often appears, and Bill Hemmer of “America’s Newsroom,” also pushed back against the celebrity real estate tycoon.

Fox’s Jedediah Bila labeled Trump’s tweets about Kelly “childish and in poor taste,” while several other Fox contributors, staffers and commentators either panned the businessman’s criticisms or defended Kelly.

Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes also jumped into the fray, blasting Trump’s “unacceptable” and “disturbing” attack on Kelly. 

“Donald Trump’s surprise and unprovoked attack on Megyn Kelly during her show last night is as unacceptable as it is disturbing. Megyn Kelly represents the very best of American journalism and all of us at FOX News Channel reject the crude and irresponsible attempts to suggest otherwise,” Ailes said in a statement shared with The Hill.

“I could not be more proud of Megyn for her professionalism and class in the face of all of Mr. Trump’s verbal assaults. Her questioning of Mr. Trump at the debate was tough but fair, and I fully support her as she continues to ask the probing and challenging questions that all presidential candidates may find difficult to answer.

“Donald Trump rarely apologizes, although in this case, he should. We have never been deterred by politicians or anyone else attacking us for doing our job, much less allowed ourselves to be bullied by anyone and we’re certainly not going to start now. All of our journalists will continue to report in the fair and balanced way that has made FOX News Channel the number one news network in the industry.”          

Trump said in a statement shared with The Hill that he disagreed with Ailes, reiterating his initial criticisms following the first GOP debate.
“I totally disagree with the FOX statement. I do not think Megyn Kelly is a quality journalist. I think her questioning of me, despite all of the polls saying I won the debate, was very unfair. Hopefully in the future I will be proven wrong and she will be able to elevate her standards to a level of professionalism that a network such as FOX deserves,” Trump said in his statement.
“More importantly, I am very pleased to see the latest polls from Public Policy Polling showing me at a strong number one with 35% in New Hampshire, the Monmouth University poll showing me, again at number one, with 30% in South Carolina and the latest national poll from Gravis where I am again the clear front runner with 40%. It was also just announced that I won the prestigious corn kernel poll at the Iowa State Fair by a landslide.”
“I will be in Iowa tonight with my speech being broadcast live on CNN and other networks. My sole focus in running for the Presidency is to Make America Great Again!”
The flurry of responses is striking, after most of the network’s personalities refrained from commenting on Trump earlier this month.

Kelly has mostly taken the high road, saying she wouldn’t apologize for grilling Trump during the debate about controversial comments he made about women.

Trump has been leading the GOP field for weeks, and two polls out Tuesday found he is backed by at least 30 percent of GOP primary voters in the early-voting states of New Hampshire and South Carolina.

—This story was updated at 2:09 p.m. 

Tags Donald Trump Fox News Megyn Kelly

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