According to The Daily Beast, insiders at Fox News are warning that a new project by the network's "straight news" reporting room is a ploy to lend credence to President Donald Trump's conspiracy theories about election fraud.
"In recent weeks, Fox News' Brain Room — the channel's longtime research resource for its dwindling population of fact-based journalists, which suffered disproportionately in the latest round of layoffs — launched a behind-the-scenes operation that current and former staffers say is designed to reinforce and amplify Trump's erroneous accusations," reported Lloyd Grove, Diana Falzone, and Justin Baragona. "'Starting this Monday, October 5th, the Brainroom Research Team will launch the Election Integrity Project,' Fox News Vice President and Managing Editor Tom Lowell wrote in a Sept. 30 memo. 'Included will be a one-stop document broken up by state that showcases different stories where election integrity is potentially compromised.'"
Sources within Fox News warn that this is motivated to lend Trump's attacks on the election legitimacy.
"Officially, it looks like an attempt to report on election irregularities," said a source familiar with the Election Integrity Project. "What it feels like is an attempt to push more baseless conspiracy theories and scare the viewers into thinking the election is being 'stolen.' It isn't. It's alarming that the Brain Room is a part of this, like it's an attempt to give it an air of legitimacy. I don't recall ever seeing anything like this before."
Trump has repeatedly and baselessly claimed that mail-in ballots are fraudulent, will be stolen or duplicated in large numbers, and will corrupt the election. He has also increasingly attacked Fox News itself, accusing the right-leaning network of disloyalty to him.