Fox News host and Trump confidante Jeanine Pirro caught going 54 mph over the speed limit

Former district attorney Jeanine Pirro is obsessed with the "rule of law" — except when it applies to herself

Published November 20, 2017 6:00PM (EST)

Jeanine Pirro (Getty/Mike Theiler)
Jeanine Pirro (Getty/Mike Theiler)

Jeanine Pirro, the Fox News personality and former district attorney who has called for "anyone who looks like a Muslim" to be reported to authorities, and who suggested that those who leak White House secrets be "taken out," was ticketed for driving a whopping 119 miles per hour — a full 34 miles per hour faster than the fastest speed limit of any road in the United States and almost double the 65 mile per hour speed limit of the road she was driving on in upstate New York.

Newsweek and other outlets were reporting on Monday that the television judge was pulled over by a state trooper on Sunday afternoon in Nichols, New York. In the state of New York, someone who is clocked at going 40 miles per hour over the speed limit can have their driver's license immediately suspended.

As far as ironic transgressions are concerned, Pirro's speeding ticket ranks high on the hypocrisy index. Like many right-wing pundits, Pirro is obsessed with law and order — though her conception of the concept lacks any nuance, despite her own legal background. In 2006, Pirro was investigated for illegally surveilling her husband in order to prove he was having an extramarital affair, according to the New York Times. Pirro, who was a candidate for state attorney general in New York at the time, was steadfast in maintaining her innocence: "Let me reiterate my disappointment with the United States attorney’s office for allowing an unethical overzealous prosecutor with a partisan political agenda using taxpayers’ money and public resources to pursue a baseless investigation into a marital situation and seek to affect the outcome of an election,” Pirro was quoted as saying in the Times.

An infamous Fox News firebrand, Pirro's penchant for anti-Muslim commentary suggests a murky understanding of constitutional law. In 2015, in the wake of the San Bernardino shooting, Pirro raised eyebrows for her comments that Muslims "were coming here to kill us." "[Pirro] contends that people who look like Muslims carrying boxes into their own homes are engaging in an activity suspicious enough to warrant contacting the authorities," Salon wrote in a summary of her 2015 comments.

Lately, Pirro has become well-known for her close relationship with President Donald Trump, which has led to a number of softball interviews between her and the president. Their cozy relationship often muddles the boundaries between journalism and friendship; just last week, the New York Times reported on a meeting between Pirro and Trump in the Oval Office, in which Pirro reportedly privately condemned Trump's attorney general, Jeff Sessions, for not investigating Hillary Clinton over a 2010 Obama administration decision to let a Russian agency buy a uranium company called Uranium One.

While legal experts agree that the 2010 "Uranium One conspiracy," as it is sometimes called, has been thoroughly debunked, Pirro, Trump and others have forced the non-issue into the political spotlight. Specifically, Pirro and her far-right ilk have been disappointed at Trump's inability to weaponize the Justice Department to use against his personal enemies.

In any case, despite Pirro's authoritarian leanings and her personal double-standard, she was not immune to the long arm of the law when it came to egregious speeding violations. When it comes to Trump confidants with car problems, Pirro finds herself in good company: Sebastian Gorka, an anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist who once swore a loyalty oath to a Hungarian pro-Nazi group, was spotted last month in Arlington parking his car illegally on the sidewalk.

By Keith A. Spencer

Keith A. Spencer is a senior editor at Salon who edits Salon's science/health vertical. His book, "A People's History of Silicon Valley: How the Tech Industry Exploits Workers, Erodes Privacy and Undermines Democracy," was released in 2018. Follow him on Twitter at @keithspencer, or on Facebook here.

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