Putting potentially contagious patients near some of society’s oldest and most vulnerable populations made no sense to Dean.
She didn’t talk about it publicly at first. That changed last May when CNN host Chris Cuomo brandished a giant cotton swab to joke about the big nose of his brother, the governor.
“It was so tone deaf,” she said. “It was disgusting.”
She shared her anger in a text exchange with her friend Tucker Carlson and, at his invitation, went on his show the next night to tell her story.
Last month she wrote a story for Fox News’ website titled, “Cuomo’s COVID nursing home policies robbed my in-laws of their 60th wedding anniversary.”
Dean, who is the weather forecaster on “Fox & Friends” and has been with the network since 2004, said her bosses have been fully supportive.
“Obviously, it’s a position that is probably a little uncomfortable for them because I’m the meteorologist and all of a sudden I’m into this role of being an advocate,” she said. “But at the end of the day, my family was affected. And I feel like that is an important role to play if there are not people that have a voice in this.”
For Fox’s audience dominated by conservatives tired of hearing criticism of then-President Donald Trump’s pandemic response, here was an issue that raised serious questions about a politician lionized by many liberals.