Fox News host Tucker CarlsonTucker CarlsonStefanik in ad says Democrats want 'permanent election insurrection' Joint Chiefs Chairman Milley becomes lightning rod on right 90 percent of full-time Fox Corp. employees say they're fully vaccinated: executive MORE mocked anchor Shepard Smith on Wednesday night after his colleague offered an impassioned defense of the network's legal analyst over his assessment that President TrumpDonald TrumpUkraine's president compares UN to 'a retired superhero' Collins to endorse LePage in Maine governor comeback bid Heller won't say if Biden won election MORE committed a crime in his interactions with the leader of Ukraine.
The back-and-forth came after Joseph diGenova, a former federal prosecutor, said on "Tucker Carlson Tonight" one night earlier that Fox News legal analyst Andrew NapolitanoAndrew Peter NapolitanoAndrew Napolitano out at Fox News amid allegations of harassment Fox's Napolitano says grand jury erred in Taylor case: 'I would have indicted all three of them' Fox's Napolitano: Supreme Court confirmation hearings will be 'World War III of political battles' MORE was a "fool" for saying Trump committed a crime.
Smith took major issue with the statement, saying on his Fox News program Wednesday afternoon that "attacking our colleague, who’s here to offer legal assessments on our air, in our work home, is repugnant." Smith also appeared to call out Carlson over the comment going unchallenged.
Carlson later Wednesday devoted an entire segment to the episode on his show, showcasing clips of the comments while appearing alongside diGenova.
After airing Smith's statements, Carlson mockingly quipped, "Repugnant."
"Not clear if that was you or me but someone was repugnant," he said, adding that Smith "ironically" called diGenova "partisan."
He then argued that "unlike some daytime hosts, I'm not very partisan," before asking diGenova whether Trump indeed committed a crime by soliciting help from Ukraine to investigate 2020 presidential candidate Joe BidenJoe BidenUkraine's president compares UN to 'a retired superhero' Biden touts 'progress' during 'candid' meetings on .5T plan Biden to tap law professor who wants to 'end banking as we know it' as OCC chief: reports MORE and his son Hunter Biden over allegations of corruption.
"Absolutely not," diGenova said, dismissing many of the arguments Napolitano made. He also questioned Napolitano's credentials to make such a claim, asserting that the former New Jersey superior court judge has never been a U.S. attorney or conducted a federal grand jury.
"I have done all of those things. If he wants to have an opinion, that's fine," diGenova said.
DiGenova later asserted that he was "very truthful" while making an assessment of Napolitano's legal argument about Trump.
Carlson then argued that "it doesn’t seem honest to me when a host, any host on any channel, including this one, pretends that the answer is obvious."
“That there is ironclad consensus about what the answer is when there, in fact, isn’t, when it’s a subjective question. That’s not news, is it? That’s opinion," he said.
A whistleblower complaint regarding Trump's interactions with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has ensnared the president's administration in controversy this week. The complaint, which was released on Thursday, accuses Trump of a broad effort to pressure Ukraine to investigate the Bidens over allegations of corruption.
A White House memo of the leaders' July 25 phone call shows that Trump asked Zelensky to work with his personal attorney Rudy GiulianiRudy GiulianiAlabama official dismisses Lindell claim that 100K votes were flipped from Trump to Biden: 'It's not possible' Adam Laxalt to be called to testify in trial of Giuliani associate Eric Trump lawyer in New York attorney general's fraud case quits MORE and Attorney General William BarrBill BarrWoodward: Milley was 'setting in motion sensible precautions' with calls to China Barr-Durham investigation again fails to produce a main event Virginia governor's race enters new phase as early voting begins MORE to investigate a political opponent.
Before the memo's release, Napolitano had said that Trump had already confessed to impropriety by acknowledging that he'd asked the Ukrainian leader to look into Biden.
"It is a crime for the president to solicit aid for his campaign from a foreign government," he said.
Napolitano also said earlier in the week that the charges against Trump were more serious than what former special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerSenate Democrats urge Garland not to fight court order to release Trump obstruction memo Why a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG Barr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel MORE found in his investigation into Russian interference and alleged obstruction of justice.
"If true — we haven’t seen the whistleblower complaint, and, under the law, it has to be revealed — if true, this is an act of corruption," he said.