Fox News host Sean Hannity joined President Trump on stage at a campaign rally in Missouri last night, despite tweeting that reports he would be doing so were incorrect.

What happened:

  • On Sunday, Axios published a story that said Hannity and talk show host Rush Limbaugh would join the president at the rally in Missouri as special guests, as announced in a campaign press release.
  • On Monday, Axios updated the story after Hannity tweeted that he was set to do a live show from Missouri and interview Trump before the rally. He stated, "To be clear, I will not be on stage campaigning with the President." A Fox News spokesperson confirmed Hannity's tweet.
  • On Monday night, Hannity joined Trump onstage and called the reporters in the back of the room "all fake news." He added that he had "no idea" that Trump was going to invite him onstage.

What they're saying:

  • Fox News spokesperson: "FOX News does not condone any talent participating in campaign events. We have an extraordinary team of journalists helming our coverage tonight and we are extremely proud of their work. This was an unfortunate distraction and has been addressed.” 
  • Hannity: "What I said in my tweet yesterday was 100% truthful. When the POTUS invited me on stage to give a few remarks last night, I was surprised, yet honored by the president’s request. This was NOT planned. And to be clear, I was not referring to my journalist colleagues at FOX News in those remarks. They do amazing work day in and day out in a fair and balanced way and it is an honor to work with such great professionals."
  • A senior Fox News employee reportedly told CNN, "People throughout the company think a new line was crossed." Another employee said, "We were all told that Hannity was going to interview the president, but no one that I spoke with expected what happened last night. I'm aghast as are a number of other people."

Go deeper

52 mins ago - Technology

Congress' next moves to rein in Big Tech

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

After grilling the CEOs of Amazon, Facebook, Google and Apple last week, members of Congress are grappling with whether to accuse any of the firms of illegal anticompetitive behavior, to propose updating federal antitrust laws — or both.

The big picture: Congress is just one arm of government making the case against these companies. Google is expected to be the first of the firms to face possible antitrust litigation from the Justice Department before summer's end, but all four face a full-court press of investigations by DOJ, the Federal Trade Commission and state attorneys general.

Fauci: Coronavirus task force to examine aerosolized spread

A sneeze. Photo: Maartje van Caspel/Getty Images

The White House coronavirus task force will examine more closely just how much SARS-CoV-2 might be transmitted via aerosols, and not just from droplets, NIAID director Anthony Fauci said Wednesday at an online forum sponsored by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Why it matters: The longer the coronavirus can remain infectious in the air, the more likely it can infect people, particularly indoors — leading to the possible need to alter air filtration and circulation within buildings.

The next wave to hit Main Street

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Call it the great retail wash. A wave of defaults, bankruptcies and evictions expected in cities across the U.S. is poised to remake the retail landscape across the country, but there may be some upside for consumers and small businesses.

Why it matters: Rather than an overnight descent into a collection of urban wastelands full of Starbucks, Amazon fulfillment centers, Chase bank branches and nothing else, the coronavirus pandemic and resulting retail apocalypse may just mean that, in major U.S. cities, less is more.