Hannity defends private jet flight for Gingrich as friendly favor

Hannity defends private jet flight for Gingrich as friendly favor
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CNN reported Wednesday afternoon that the Fox News host flew Gingrich to meet Trump in Indiana as the presumptive GOP nominee closes in on his running mate choice.

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"I have known Newt Gingrich since 1990. I emceed his event the night he became Speaker of the House in 1994," Hannity said in a statement to The Hill. "He has been a long term, very dear friend of mine and is a private citizen. Whatever favors I do for my friends is my business.”
 
Hannity, an opinion host who has worked at the network since its inception in 1996, has been vocal in his support of Gingrich as Trump's VP choice. Earlier this week, he said this to Gingrich on his Fox News program, "Hannity": 

"Who would be best at prosecuting the case against Hillary Clinton in terms of the list that he has? Who would be best in terms of making the case and articulating the case for Donald Trump with a positive voice like you have? Who would be the person that would pretty much be assured a win in any presidential, vice presidential debate?"

"I think you’ve checked that corner," Hannity continued. "Who has balanced the budget and given us a surplus? Who has the ability to work with Congress? I check all the boxes, and you're right there at the top, and I think you'd be the right choice." 

Hannity has always maintained he's a talk show host, not a journalist, and therefore should not be held to same ethical standards.  
 
This week Fox News suspended Gingrich's contributor agreement, citing a potential conflict of interest if Gingrich were to be selected as Trump's running mate.  

A source close to the situation also told The Hill that Gingrich wasn't likely to be hired back by the network because of the likelihood he would join a Trump administration in another capacity if the Republican wins in November.

Trump will announce his running mate on Friday in New York, according to campaign manager Paul Manafort.