When conservative radio host Mark Levin appeared on Fox News’ “Hannity” last week to discuss the latest in the Russia investigation, he ended up baffling even some of his most conservative allies.

“Robert Mueller is a greater threat to this republic and the Constitution than anything Vladimir Putin did during the campaign,” Levin said. “And I am no fan of Vladimir Putin.”

While bringing up a basket of old claims about the Mueller investigation, Levin did not say specifically what made Mueller a larger threat than Putin.

Still, the following night, “Hannity” guest host Jeanine Pirro made the same comparison.

“Is Mueller a greater threat than Putin to this country?” Pirro asked Fox commentator Dan Bongino.

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“Well, he’s a serious threat,” Bongino replied.

Though far from the first fringe theory pushed by Fox against special counsel Robert S. Mueller III, it marks the latest effort to say anything and everything to undermine an investigation that has led to more than two dozen indictments and five guilty pleas in less than two years. And it comes as President Trump and his lawyers make a final push to undermine Mueller’s probe ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.

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It also closely aligns with another fringe theory long-pushed by Fox: Mueller is part of a coup d’état to overthrow Trump.

No fewer than nine Fox hosts and pundits have suggested as much since February 2017, including:

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  • Sean Hannity
  • Lou Dobbs
  • Jesse Watters
  • Mark Levin
  • Mike Huckabee
  • Joseph diGenova
  • John Bolton
  • Jeanine Pirro
  • Dan Bongino

The coup theory even made it into the congressional record in November.

Fox pundits have also called the investigation a “witch hunt,” “illegitimate” and “corrupt,” and Hannity called it “a direct threat to this American republic” on the anniversary of Mueller’s appointment.

It was a far cry from what he said exactly one year prior.

“I think this is a good thing,” Hannity said of Mueller’s appointment on May 17, 2017. “I think, you know what, they’ve been clamoring for it, let them get it. … Let’s get to the bottom of it, game on.”

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