A Project of the Council on American-Islamic Relations


Fox News Channel

The Public Religion Research Institute included the following points about the Fox News Channel in a report published in September 2012:

  • “There is a strong correlation between trusting Fox News and negative views of Islam and Muslims. This pattern is evident even among conservative political and religious groups.”
  • “Among all Republicans, nearly two-thirds (63 percent) say that Islam is at odds with American values. Among Republicans who most trust Fox News, more than 7-in-10 (72 percent) believe that Islam is at odds with American values.”
  • “Among Republicans who most trust other news sources, less than half (49 percent) say Islam is at odds with American values, making their attitudes roughly similar to the general population.”
  • “A similar effect can be seen in beliefs about American Muslims and the establishment of Shari’a law. Nearly 6-in-10 (58 percent) Republicans who most trust Fox News believe that American Muslims are trying to establish Shari’a law in the U.S. Again, the attitudes of Republicans who most trust other news sources look similar to the general population (33 percent and 30 percent respectively).”

When a YMCA and local police department in St. Paul, Minn. partnered to give young Muslim girls a once-a-week hour-long swim lesson during which the facility would be closed to men, Fox proclaimed, “Sharia law is now changing everything.”

On October 8, 2014, Fox News host Greta Van Susteren issued an on-air challenge, stating: “So here’s my offer. I will give any Muslim leader of national or international stature the platform right here ‘On the Record’ to condemn Islamic extremism and to make a call to arms of every Muslim leader of every mosque to do the same. Condemn Islamic extremism.”

CAIR Executive Director Nihad Awad accepted the challenge, but was declined an opportunity by the host to speak. According to a CAIR press release, “Van Susteren’s producers changed the terms of the challenge and ultimately dropped Awad’s appearance”.

CAIR produced a video to address Van Susteren’s challenge:

In 2012, Media Matters collected a number of examples of factually questionable assertions about Muslims made on Fox News. These included Brian Kilmeade claiming that all “terrorists are Muslims,” and a Fox News contributor saying, “The truth is that Muslims tend to be more violent than Christians.”

An incident that points to Fox News’ pattern of anti-Muslim bias was on the “Hannity and Colmes” program, where Sean Hannity appeared to encourage televangelist Pat Robertson’s attack and degradation of Islam and Prophet Muhammad. Robertson made comments about the Prophet such as “This man was an absolute wild-eyed fanatic. He was a robber and a brigand. And to say that these terrorists distort Islam, they’re carrying out Islam”. Hannity supported those remarks by responding with “Reverend, how widespread do you think that fanatical interpretation is?…Or do you think it’s the majority of Muslims?”

On a “Tucker Carlson” tonight show in 2017, Carlson alluded to how the “attitudes of faithful Muslims are not Western at all”, pointing to how Islam “tolerates a level of violence” that only does not observe in Judaism and Presbyterianism. This type of rhetoric furthers the Islamophobic notion that Islam and modernity are incompatible due to Islam being a regressive religion that is unwilling to evolve with the changing times.

Furthermore, Judge Jeanine Pirro pointed to how Rep. Ilhan Omar’s decision to wear a hijab is so she “won’t get molested”, and is reflective of her adherence to the Sharia law, which is antithetical to the United States Constitution. This notion furthers the stereotype that Sharia law does not tolerate religious pluralism and Muslims worldwide want Sharia law to supersede all other governmental laws of the land.

ACT For America

ACT for America is one of the largest anti-Muslim hate group in the U.S. ACT advances harmful conspiracy theories about Muslim Americans, supports anti-Muslim politicians, and advocates for anti-Muslim policies.

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Adelson Family Foundation

The Adelson Family Foundation is among the largest private donors to anti-Muslim groups, warding $5.85 million to anti-Muslim groups between 2014 and 2016, and then giving nearly $4 million to these groups between 2017-2019.

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American Center for Law and Justice

The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) is an anti-Muslim, constitutional law firm established by televangelist Pat Robertson and Jay Sekulow. This organization is known for disseminating anti-Muslim propaganda. 

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American Freedom Defense Initiative

The American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI) is an Islamophobic hate group led by Pamela Geller. The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) identifies the organization as an anti-Muslim hate group. At one time, SPLC considered Geller “the anti-Muslim movement’s most visible and flamboyant figurehead.”  

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American Freedom Law Center

The American Freedom Law Center, Inc. (AFLC) is an anti-Muslim law firm co-founded and co-led by David Yerushalmi and Robert Muise.   The center often acts as the Islamophobia Network’s legal counsel and has represented Frank Gaffney’s Center for Security Policy and Pamela Geller’s American Freedom Defense Initiative.  

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American Islamic Forum for Democracy

American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD) is an anti-Muslim lobby group founded by Zhudi Jasser. Under Jasser’s leadership, AIFD has allied itself with institutions and legislative efforts that attempt to limit Muslims’ access to enumerated freedoms in the Bill of Rights.

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Americans for Peace and Tolerance

Americans for Peace and Tolerance (APT) is a Boston-based lobby group founded by Charles Jacobs that proliferates misinformation and conspiracy theories about Islam and Muslim-Americans. It is dedicated to undermining mainstream Muslim institutions and promoting Islamophobia within the media. 

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