Fact Check: Jim Jordan Did NOT 'Terrorize' Sunny Hostin in a 2019 House Hearing

October 9th, 2023 8:18 AM

On October 5, co-host Sunny Hostin endorsed the notion of Rep. Jim Jordan (R.-Ohio) as a "political terrorist," complaining he "terrorized me and the other experts" at a House Judiciary Committee hearing: 

I testified in front of Congress about something so simple, cameras in courtrooms. He came in late. He looked disheveled and he immediately was screaming and yelling and terrorized me and the other experts on the panel. And describing him as a terrorist is exactly that. He's a chaos agent and it came out of nowhere.

So I wondered when this alleged terrorizing occurred to this delicate flower. It was a subcommittee hearing on "Ensuring the Public's Right of Access to the Courts" on September 26, 2019. So I thought the video must be on C-SPAN, but I couldn't locate it. So Nick Fondacaro found it on YouTube. This does NOT match Hostin's wild tale of a disheveled terrorizing monster. 

First of all, the "came in late" is an odd attack, since in this hearing (as in many), members of Congress mill in and out. But Jordan was there to politely listen to Hostin's opening statement about how cameras in courtrooms would help bring transparency to a justice system tilted against African Americans, and she knows this as the rare "one of the only Afro-Latinas with a federal prosecutorial background." 

When Jordan's time came to ask questions for five minutes, he asked Hostin no questions. 

Instead, he turned to Jeffrey Toobin to Hostin's left, peppering him with questions about how he proclaimed on CNN that the Trump Justice Department was "corrupt," since the first Trump impeachment inquiry had just begun. Subcommittee chairman Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) -- the Guam Could Tip Over guy -- protested that asking Toobin about Ukraine was off the top of cameras in courtrooms. (Now, the tables have turned, and Democrats will be offended to hear Republicans say Biden's Justice Department is corrupt.)

Jordan is dismissive of the Democrat's protests, but "screaming and yelling" isn't really an accurate description for it.

UPDATE: Bill D'Agostino cut the video for MRCTV: