Fox News Hasn’t Asked Paid Contributor Ken Starr About His Pedophile Client Jeffrey Epstein

By Justin Baragona (Maxwell Tani)
Photo Illustration by The Daily Beast / Photos Getty

Fox News is apparently incapable of asking Jeffrey Epstein’s lawyers about Jeffrey Epstein.

As The Daily Beast reported earlier this year, high-profile attorney Alan Dershowitz, who helped negotiate a secretive deal for the billionaire pedophile to avoid federal prosecution, has appeared on Fox News more than 70 times since news of that 2008 deal broke. Not once was he asked about Epstein or the plea deal a judge recently declared unconstitutional.

But Dershowitz isn’t the only member of Epstein’s legal team who has repeatedly gotten a pass from Fox News: famed prosecutor Kenneth Starr, who also helped negotiate the illegal Epstein deal, is a paid Fox News contributor who makes regular appearances across the network.

In the nearly nine months since the Miami Herald revealed that Epstein’s legal team pressured then-U.S. attorney Alexander Acosta (now Trump’s labor secretary) into accepting a shockingly lenient deal, Fox News has interviewed Starr at least 59 times. But not a single host at the network has asked Starr about Epstein, Dershowitz, or their involvement in negotiating the plea. 

Starr, who is billed as a paid Fox News contributor since at least early this year, has appeared across the network’s opinion and news shows, almost exclusively as a commentator on matters related to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe of Russian election interference. 

Fox News Hasn’t Asked Dershowitz About His Pedophile Client Jeffrey Epstein

The majority of Starr’s interviews were with Fox’s primetime opinion hosts like Sean Hannity, Tucker Carlson, and Laura Ingraham. He also makes frequent appearances on Fox & Friends and shows anchored by Shannon Bream, Neil Cavuto, and Martha MacCallum. As the former independent counsel appointed to investigate President Bill Clinton’s Lewinsky affair, Starr’s voice is often used to bash the Mueller “witch hunt” and deny collusion by the Trump campaign.

Neither Fox News nor Starr responded to requests for comment on this story.

Many of the high-profile attorney’s appearances came around the same time as major developments in the Epstein saga, yet even some of the network’s “hard news” anchors have not asked him or Dershowitz about their role in negotiating the sweetheart deal for the financier accused of running a massive sex-trafficking scheme.

One day after the Herald broke news of the 2008 plea on Nov. 28, however, MacCallum did mention on-air that Starr was one of Epstein’s attorneys at the time. That appeared to be the only on-air mention of any such connection until after Epstein’s arrest this month.

Starr, meanwhile, appeared that same weekend on Sunday Morning Futures and despite the Epstein news still being fresh, host Maria Bartiromo instead focused solely on bashing the Mueller probe and asking the attorney about the death of former President George H. W. Bush.

Months later, on Feb. 21, a federal judge ruled that the plea deal negotiated by Starr was unconstitutional as the victims were not notified. Three days later, Mark Levin hosted Starr for the entirety of his weekend show called Life, Liberty & Levin. Despite speaking to Starr for an entire hour, Levin, a right-wing talk radio host, found no time to ask his guest about recent news regarding his pedophile client.

Following the judge’s ruling, several weeks later, Starr co-authored a New York Times op-ed on March 4 with several other Epstein attorneys, defending the plea deal while claiming that the “number of young women involved in the investigation has been vastly exaggerated, there was no ‘international sex-trafficking operation’ and there was never evidence that Mr. Epstein ‘hosted sex parties’ at his home.” 

Two days after that op-ed ran, Epstein and his associates were accused by a victim’s lawyer of running a sex-trafficking ring. On March 8, Starr appeared on The Ingraham Angle but, of course, was not asked about either the Times op-ed or the latest accusations against his client. Three days later, a federal court took action begin unsealing documents related to the Epstein case.

Conservative Scold Ken Starr Got a Billionaire Pedophile Off

Over the following month, Starr made another 15 Fox News appearances, including a hit alongside Dershowitz mere days after a mystery party filed federal documents attempting to prevent the release of Epstein documents. The pairs’ pedophile client was never discussed.

As Epstein investigations picked up steam over the spring, Starr’s Fox News appearances increased rapidly, sometimes including multiple hits in the same day. But the topic of conversation was always Mueller-related. Since mid-April, the counselor has made a total of 32 appearances on Fox News, including his most recent: a July 3 Mueller-bashing chat with Sean Hannity.

Two days later, on this past Saturday evening, Epstein was arrested, kick-starting hours upon hours worth of coverage across cable-news network this week, including on Fox News.

Dershowitz had been scheduled to appear Monday night on Hannity’s show, hours after federal prosecutors indicted Epstein and alleged a “vast network” of sex-trafficking. But Epstein’s famous attorney did not appear on-air that evening—because of a “crowded schedule,” Dershowitz told The Hollywood Reporter.

And since Epstein’s headline-grabbing arrest, much ado has been made about Sec. Acosta’s role in the sweetheart deal that prevented the billionaire from being prosecuted a decade ago. 

Ken Starr, the man who negotiated that deal—and is a paid network employee—is nowhere to be found on Fox News’ airwaves.

Andrew Kirell contributed reporting.

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