Fox News’ round-table show “The Five” has enjoyed great success on the network — even becoming the most watched show on Fox in Oct. 2021 — and now Jeanine Pirro will be a permanent co-host.
Pirro will be joining the current hosts, Jesse Watters, Greg Gutfeld and Dana Perino, and a rotating host who will present a more left-leaning view of the topics discussed. The rotating hosts include Jessica Tarlov, Geraldo Rivera and former Democratic Rep. Harold Ford Jr. of Tennessee, The Hill reported.
Pirro has been a conservative media personality with Fox since 2006, when she joined as a legal analyst, and in 2011 she was given her own weekend show, “Justice with Judge Jeanine.”
She will be giving up her show to focus full time on “The Five,” Fox News announced.
“The Five” has been enjoying immense success as it averaged 2.9 million viewers, making it the second most watched show on cable news. It also topped other CNN and MSNBC shows during 2021, Fox News reported.
“‘The Five’ continues to be a beloved show by the American audience. Each of the co-hosts are accomplished and insightful talent with diverse opinions and terrific chemistry who will certainly help drive this ensemble program going forward,” Fox News Media CEO Suzanne Scott said in a statement on Wednesday.
Pirro will join the show permanently on Jan. 24.
Pirro has been controversial in the past on Fox, particularly in 2019 when she made comments about Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota. These comments resulted in a three week suspension for Pirro.
At the time, the anchor commented on Omar’s hijab and anti-Israeli feelings, stating that Omar’s Islamic beliefs could be antithetical to the U.S. Constitution.
“Think about this: She’s not getting this anti-Israel sentiment doctrine from the Democrat Party. So if it’s not rooted in the party, where is she getting it from?” Pirro said, USA TODAY reported.
“Think about it. Omar wears a hijab, which according to the Quran 33:59, tells women to cover so they won’t get molested. Is her adherence to this Islamic doctrine indicative of her adherence to Sharia law, which in itself is antithetical to the United States Constitution?” she added.
These comments resulted in a three week suspension, as Pirro told Sebastian Gorka on his Salem Radio Network show in September of that year, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
In 2021, Pirro was also sued for defamation, along with Fox, by Smartmatic, the Washington Post reported.
Smartmatic was one of the electronic voting systems used in the 2020 elections. In the suit, the company claimed that Fox and Pirro, as well as a few others, had falsely accused Smartmatic of helping steal the 2020 election from former President Donald Trump.
“Fox is responsible for this disinformation campaign, which has damaged democracy worldwide and irreparably harmed Smartmatic and other stakeholders who contribute to modern elections,” Smartmatic CEO Antonio Mugica said in a statement announcing the lawsuit.
Fox responded to the lawsuit, saying the network “is committed to providing the full context of every story with in-depth reporting and clear opinion” and they “are proud of our 2020 election coverage and will vigorously defend this meritless lawsuit in court.”
Despite these past controversies, Pirro will be taking a more prominent role in the network as she permanently co-hosts “The Five.”