Fox News hosts: Palin 'pulled punches' admission a 'joke'
August 4th, 2011
12:00 PM ET
7 years ago

Fox News hosts: Palin 'pulled punches' admission a 'joke'

(CNN) - Two Fox News Channel hosts said Thursday they were joking when they previously claimed they felt awkward about commenting on former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin because she's a fellow Fox employee.

"The only problem with talking about Sarah Palin is that she works here, and it's like a co-worker," said Greg Gutfeld, co-host of "The Five," the network's show on Wednesday. "And if I say something bad and I see her in the hallway, I feel really awkward and wrong, so I just kind of say, 'good job'."

Co-host Bob Beckel agreed, saying he'd also held back his criticism of Palin, a Fox News contributor who makes more than $1 million per year from the network. Palin is flirting with a run for president in 2012.

"It has nothing to do with that, it has everything to do with your paycheck. That's what you feel awkward about," Beckel said. "I know exactly what you mean. I'll be honest: I've pulled my punches on her."

After the comments spread on the internet, the hosts during Thursday's show replayed the remarks and clarified that they were joking. Republican panelist Dana Perino referred to the segment as a "mea culpa."

"So you make one joke and left-wing sites… go crazy because they're so desperate for any kind of Palin anecdote–that's like their heroin," said Gutfeld.

Co-host Beckel, a Democrat, touted his record of criticizing Palin on Fox in the past and said Wednesday's comments were a way to break up some of the tediousness on the show. "We were joking," he said.

"Everybody happy now? Good," Beckel said as their comments came to a close.

Beckel is a long-time Democratic operative and commentator while Gutfeld is a conservative television host. The two are among a cast of rotating hosts on the Fox show that bills itself as a discussion and debate of the day's top stories.

The original Wednesday exchange followed a playback of Palin's comments Tuesday night over reports that Vice President Joe Biden had likened tea party activists to terrorists.

In Palin's response, she said President Barack Obama should look into his own past with Bill Ayers if he wants to see "domestic terrorists."

Filed under: Fox News • Sarah Palin
soundoff (494 Responses)
  1. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    It would be nice if every public official (former & current) was grilled about what they have done and what they would do now. It just goes to show that there is a problem having former polticos as analysis on their shows. They get to become friends and don't push as hard as they could.

    August 4, 2011 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  2. Clinker

    Note to IItLeftaBadTaste: She is already irrelevant.

    August 4, 2011 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  3. GI Joe

    Who gives a rat's. She's Soooooo 2007.

    Michelle is the only one now.

    August 4, 2011 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  4. J.Crobuzon

    If you add up all the other news outlets and count them as 'other,' more people watch 'other' than FOX. They have a lot of fans, and so does Justin Bieber; doesn't mean either one is a good source of information. They admit that they are a comedy show and reporting news isn't what they do, so why not just drop the "news" part and be all Attack Blondes all the time?

    August 4, 2011 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  5. ana

    Are you Serious :O, Fox gives Palin free passssssss?????????????????????? OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 4, 2011 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  6. bosfaninva

    In other shocking developments, the sun rose in the east today.

    August 4, 2011 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  7. Common Sense

    Yeah, that's real sound unbiased journalism for you! Nice job FOX! What a bunch of incompetents!

    August 4, 2011 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  8. Art

    Absolutely Fox has been "easy" on her. On the other hand, some of her gaffs have been no more than slips of the tongue, on a part with President Obama having been in "57 states so far." You didn't see NBC, ABC, CBS, MSNBC, CNN etc make a big deal out of Obama's remark; they viewed it as a slip that merely showed the strain of campaigning and how tired it leaves a candidate.

    And (as a libertarian) it wasn't a big deal.

    As for Palin, ONE of her problems is that when she makes a mistake, instead of laughing and saying, "Obviously my tongue wound up over my eyeteeth and I couldn't see what I was saying," she tries to show (and gets Fox support) that it wasn't a goof-up. Like Watergate, the cover-up is usually more damaging than the crime.

    And no...I do not want her running for president...or being my president. However, she'll do a good job helping Obama's re-election as she tears into the crowd of republican hopefuls!

    August 4, 2011 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  9. palintwit

    Can you say T-R-A-I-L-E-R T-R-A-S-H ?

    August 4, 2011 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  10. JPX

    This is news to no one. Everyone knows that FOX treats her with kid gloves.

    August 4, 2011 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  11. danny

    These two should be fired (no chance) and should lose all credentials they have. It's apparent that they cannot perform the jobs they were educated to do. Any reporter who pulls back a punch for whatever reason is no longer a reporter, but a simple fan.

    August 4, 2011 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  12. dgkdgk

    Fox goes soft on Palin ... what other breaking news stories can we expect to see on the wire today? "Water is Wet!" "The Sun Rises in the East!" "Generalissimo Franco is Still Dead!"

    Won't she just go away?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    August 4, 2011 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  13. TPF

    The only truthful thing coming out of FOX. Best thing they can do is let her go!

    August 4, 2011 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  14. Richard T.

    Imagine that. FOX discovers a bias. Everyone in America knew that FOX protects and promotes Palin's stupidity. The Murdock media "Klan" suffers from incest.

    August 4, 2011 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  15. Rudy NYC

    This should get a Tweet out of her.

    August 4, 2011 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  16. Michael

    Wow !! What an opportunity to meet her in a hallway and challenge her : " Are you smarter than a 5th grader" ???? ALL persons running for any office should first be given an IQ test and the results published. Tea Baggers don't waste your time on this since it would be very embarrassing to you.

    August 4, 2011 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  17. twiddly

    When you quote some of Palin's idiocy, you could at least note that her claim is without merit.
    That would be "real" journalism, versus tabloid-style sensationalism.

    August 4, 2011 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  18. Maria Elizabeth

    The folks at Fox news KNOWS she's an idiot. They are using her to spread their own form of prejudices and disention. Get the simple folks railed up. This is just one more piece of evidence that FOX News is nothing more than tabloid gossip and worthless stupid opinions by discreditable racists.

    August 4, 2011 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  19. mike

    wh o cares about her anymore shes washed up her and her movie

    August 4, 2011 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  20. I don't wanna learn Chinese

    ... and CNN goes soft on Obama. How is any of this "news?"

    August 4, 2011 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  21. Eeew, don't sniffit, just flushit!

    Yet CNN and the rest of the lamestream media continue to go extra soft on little Barry and shield him from much-needed scrutiny!

    Do the American people a favor CNN - start doing your duty and start digging into and examining the extremist background and influences, lack of any pertinent executive experience of this liberal ideologue that has lead to one after the other failed policies of this "messiah" you obviously protect! He's killing our country!

    Obama has failed miserably, and will be ousted in 2012! The mama grizzly is coming!

    August 4, 2011 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  22. Voice of Reason

    Fox News gave Palin a break?

    Well, DUH.

    August 4, 2011 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  23. Maria Elizabeth

    PS. It's a shame CNN even spreads her particular form of craziness. I need a new News source.

    August 4, 2011 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  24. Michael in Houston

    dont worry pal. First off, no one watches your right winged programming and secondly, Palin has an entire nation more then happy to call her for what she unattractive and unappealing selfish egomaniac that has nothing to offer.

    August 4, 2011 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  25. JC

    Maybe they are afraid their phones will be hacked if they do criticize Sister Sarah!

    August 4, 2011 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
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