Lionel (radio personality)
Michael William Lebron
August 26, 1958
Tampa, Florida, U.S.
|Education||University of South Florida (BA)|
Stetson University (JD)
|Awards||2015 New York Emmy Award for Writer: Commentary/Editorial|
Michael William Lebron (born August 26, 1958), better known as Lionel, is an American syndicated radio, television and YouTube legal and media analyst. He is known as a leading promoter of the far-right QAnon conspiracy theory.
Early life and education
Lebron was born and raised in Tampa, Florida, where he attended Jesuit High School. Lebron graduated from the University of South Florida and Stetson University College of Law. After graduating from law school, Lebron worked with the Hillsborough County State Attorney's Office.
Lebron hosted the CourtTV law show Snap Judgment in the late 1990s. Lionel then began appearing on WABC radio in New York. He first appeared as a caller to WFLA in Tampa, Florida, drawing attention to himself by avoiding the given topic of discussion. He was eventually given his own time slot on WFLA before moving to New York City.
Beginning in May 2007, Lebron replaced The Majority Report with Sam Seder on Air America Radio with a daily three-hour talk show. Seder claimed that Lebron's unpopularity with Air America's listeners led to the loss of most of Seder's audience within a year of assuming the timeslot, as well as the loss of two-thirds of the live affiliates and live streaming.[better source needed]
Talkers Magazine included Lebron in their 2010 "Heaviest Hundred" list at number 54 and in their 2013 "Frontier Fifty" list at number 37. In 2015, he won a New York Emmy Award for commentary and editorial writing.
Promotion of conspiracy theories
Since losing his show on Air America, Lebron shifted his politics to the right and re-established himself as a right-wing conspiracy theorist for Alex Jones' InfoWars network, where he has used his show to promote conspiracy theories, such as birtherism (false claims about President Barack Obama), "The Storm", claims the government is involved in a cover-up of the October 1, 2017, Las Vegas mass shooting, the 9/11 Truth movement, the anti-vaccine movement, and QAnon.
Lebron has regularly hosted conspiracy theorist Jerome Corsi, a supporter of the birther movement and promoter of QAnon conspiracy theories, and has interviewed a guest who has questioned official accounting of the December 14, 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting.
Meeting with Trump
In August 2018, Lebron met with President Donald Trump at the White House and was photographed with Trump. Lebron stated that the two did not talk about the QAnon conspiracy theory that Lebron has helped to promote, but that "I think we all know he knows about it."
- "Catching Up With Lionel". Talkers Magazine. March 2014. Retrieved 2016-11-16.
- Wise, Justin (2018-08-24). "Trump meets with promoter of 'QAnon' conspiracy theory in Oval Office". TheHill. Retrieved 2018-08-25.
- "Faith and Talk Radio: An Interview with Michael 'Lionel' Lebron". America Magazine. 2014-08-01. Retrieved 2020-07-03.
- "Radio Years.com". www.radioyears.com. Retrieved 2020-07-03.
- TYT Interviews (5 February 2010). "Sam Seder on TYT Network (Why Air America Fell, Obama & Much More!)" – via YouTube.
- HEAVIEST HUNDRED: The 100 Most Important Radio Talk Show Hosts in America talkers.com
- "Frontier Fifty 2013". 6 September 2011.
- "Google" (PDF). www.nyemmys.org.
- "LIONEL PODCAST: Lionel In "House of Cards," Mentulate References on the Campaign Trail and the Demise of Relevant Politics". 6 March 2016.
- Lionel Nation (16 October 2017). "Anatomy of the #LasVegasShooting Coverup: Citizen and Civilian Journalism Outclass Deep State #MSM" – via YouTube.
- Weigel, David. "Trump posed with prominent conspiracy theorist in Oval Office photo".
- "Lionel🇺🇸 on Twitter".
- "QAnon conspiracy theorist meets Trump at White House". 25 August 2018.
- "Jerome Corsi: When 'The Storm' Breaks, We'll See Films Of 'Global Elites' Butchering Children - Right Wing Watch".
- Project: Liberty Defined (21 November 2014). "LIONEL PODCAST: An Interview With Professor James Tracy - November 20, 2014" – via YouTube.
- Sommer, Asawin Suebsaeng|Will (2018-08-24). "Trump Meets QAnon Kook Who Believes Dems Run Pedophile Cult". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 2018-08-25.