September 28th, 2010
02:07 PM ET
13 years ago

Obama: Fox News is 'destructive' to America

(CNN) – President Obama is pulling no punches when it comes to Fox News, declaring the cable news outlet to be "destructive to [America's] long-term growth."

In a more than 8,000-word interview with Rolling Stone Magazine, Obama compared the cable news channel to papers owned by William Randolph Hearst at the turn of the 20th century that unabashedly pushed the media titan's own political views.

"You had folks like Hearst who used their newspapers very intentionally to promote their viewpoints. I think Fox is part of that tradition – it is part of the tradition that has a very clear, undeniable point of view," Obama told the magazine.

Officials in the Obama White House have long made Fox News a punching bag, launching a full blown offensive last year when aides declared the network to be "opinion journalism masquerading as news." Then-White House Communications Director Anita Dunn said the cable outlet "operates almost as either the research arm or the communications arm of the Republican Party," and top aide Valerie Jarret called Fox "clearly biased."

But the new comments from Obama constitute the president's most direct attack yet on the network owned by business mogul Rupert Murdoch.

Fox News pushes "a point of view that I disagree with. It's a point of view that I think is ultimately destructive for the long-term growth of a country that has a vibrant middle class and is competitive in the world," Obama said.

"But as an economic enterprise, it's been wildly successful. And I suspect that if you ask Mr. Murdoch what his number one concern is, it's that Fox is very successful."

Fox has yet to respond to the president. But during the administration offensive against the network last year, network spokesman Michael Clemente slammed the White House for continuing "to declare war on a news organization instead of focusing on the critical issues that Americans are concerned about."

Filed under: Fox News • President Obama
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. Vernon Dozier

    HA-HA-HA-HA ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    The Democrats don't know what to do when they don't have all of the mainstream media on their side -

    September 28, 2010 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  2. Darryl Cox

    Of course he hates Fox News. Fox News is moderate to conservative. Obama is left moderate to way left liberal. Fox News calls him on every spending program that he doles out with Pelosi and calls him on his lack of experience for his job. Of which he probably has the least experience for a President in recent (life time) history. No one likes a critic, but particularly when they are faster, smarter and can give a solid reason for their position and you can not give one for yours. It's much easier to just say they are evil and racist .... then have nothing t oback those comments up with from your side.

    September 28, 2010 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  3. Bill

    I see. So any news agency that asks hard questions, or doesn't toe the line with the Glorious Leader is "destructive". This is exactly what our founding fathers warned us about, why the 1st Amendment exists. To many media sources are still in love with Mr. Obama, and fail to ask hard hitting questions. Those that do are ignored or ortracized by this administration.

    The American people made a huge mistake electing this fool into office, and we have another 2 years before we can make it right.

    September 28, 2010 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  4. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    JFK said "ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country". Fox news is definetly destructive to the growth of this country and the Republicans are derelict in their duties in helping them destroy this country.

    September 28, 2010 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  5. Stephen

    So I guess any views that do not complete align with Obama mean they are destructvie to the United States? Really smart move by the president alienate a very large portion of the society.

    September 28, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  6. Ken

    I watch some of Fox News and I watch CNN regularly. The shows I watch on Fox, "Special Report" and "The O'Reilly Factor" are, although having a conservative slant, really pretty fair. I find CNN to have a somewhat liberal slant although relatively balanced. On the other hand, I find MSNBC for the most part to be a liberal propaganda machine. Only the "Morning Joe" show has anything reasonably approaching balance. The evening shows don't even attempt to have any balance. I fault all of the media for never giving any exposure to centrist views. It is always liberal vs. conservative on television. Perhaps this is one of the reasons there is so much political rancor in this country and it is becoming increasingly unwatchable.

    September 28, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  7. Zack

    Finally! I have been waiting for someone to point out this basic fact regarding the propaganda machine that is Fox "News". This statement by the President needs to be repeated and defended by the rest of the MSM over and over and over. Quit allowing the lies and politically biased distortions that Fox spews to go unchallenged. The most dangerous threat to our nation is FOX NEWS, in my opinion.

    September 28, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  8. Sir Guest-a-Lot

    I'm not saying that Fox News is perfectly neutral. It's not and it caters to individuals on the right side of the political spectrum. But Fox News is successful because it counterbalances the left wing news from MSNBC and CNN. Mr. Obama, being an intelligent and savvy individual, knows this and he has no illusions about the neutrality of the mainstream media outlets. So to attack one (the one that he disagrees with) in such an anti-democratic, anti-free speech fashion is alarming and shameful. I would expect this from lower level politicians and officials – but from the President? Wow.

    September 28, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  9. ohn

    obama calling fox news destructive which is a lie and coming from a deceiver like obama a person can expect remarks from someone that cant handle the truth.HE is the one that is trying to destroy the U.S not fox news and all because the others are afraid to speak out against obama and the democrats. obama has got to get it through his kenya and muslim head that we do have a freedom of speech. 2012 new president.

    September 28, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  10. todd

    All power greedy communist thinking and idolizing leaders would say that any opposition is destructive to their agenda!

    September 28, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  11. Jeanette

    Are they any worst then those on CNN or MSNBC that seem to wet themselve with just the mention of the President's name? You can't trust any of them to be unbais.

    September 28, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  12. Kevin

    News organizations are biased? Who would have thought? 🙂 News organizations always push their point of view; whining about it doesn't help.

    September 28, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  13. Piper

    Obama is destructive to America. What a hypocrite. He has done more to divide America then any politician in recent history, after having promised to bring us together. Lies just like transparency. As far as bias ABC, CBS, and NBC have always leaned far left as long as i can remember (40 years). CNN probably the best of the rest as far as cable news other then FOX, but they still lean farther left then FOX leans right. Then you have MSNBC, CNBC, etc etc etc, they are so leftist they would make Mao feel conservative. So there is one station that is not leftist, bit deal. Oh, thats it, its because everyone is getting tired of your leftist drivel and moving over to FOX, so you have no one LEFT watching you. Pretty hard to feel sorry for you.

    September 28, 2010 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  14. Mike

    Is there a media source out there that isn't politically biased?

    September 28, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  15. carringtonblak

    that is an understatement

    September 28, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  16. Chuck

    What a joke, CNN is more distructive than Fox... you are no news organization just admit it!

    September 28, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  17. Marty

    Couldn't agree more! Sources of news shouldn't be intentionally biased. That's all there is to it.

    September 28, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  18. Rickster

    lolol...poor Barry....he's failing miserably at everything so all he does anymore is blame anyone and everyone else. The fact is that democrats had a boot-licking national media carrying their water for decades. Then along came Fox News who were honest enough to give both sides of the issues and democrats have no idea how to react so they react the way they always do by third-grade name calling, whining incessantly and by trying to trash those that they oppose. Sorry dems, those tactics don't work anymore. The people are wise to your impotent ways.

    September 28, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  19. JC

    Well, let's be honest. the very term "Fox News" is an oxymoron. What bothers me isn't that they represent a certain political view (virtually all news agencies do); what bothers me is that they consider their abortive coverage to be news at all. For facts, it is one of the very worse information sources I have ever seen. That said, fighting with any media company is a certain way to look foolish. They say better to keep your mouth closed, and be thought a fool, than to open it, and prove them right. Too late; our president has been looking nothing but foolish from day one.

    September 28, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  20. whatever

    What about MSNBC? NYT? NPR? The President fails to mention outlets that spew and support his view of America. The issue is that Fox is very successful at attracting viewers where the progressive outlets are not. I for one think 24 hours news (regardless of perspective) will continue to cause our political discourse to spiral out of control. Where else can Michael Moore or Ann Coulter get a national stage for 30+ minutes? They certainly wouldn't get it in a newspaper or during a 30 minute nightly network news show.

    September 28, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  21. Truth=Freedom

    Apparently they are the only ones who hit him where it hurts.

    September 28, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  22. John

    Faux news is a joke, it is completely biased in form of the word. I admit I sometimes watch it, but only for the comical entertainment it produces. They claim they are fair and balanced, I have never seen a more unfair or unbalanced news organization in my life say maybe the North Korean New Bureau. It's not news its propaganda and its goal it to divide this country. Anybody who takes Faux news seriously needs sterilized so they cant contaminate the rest of the world with they're ignorance.

    September 28, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  23. Alex

    Mr. Clemente got it all wrong. A news channel that is spreading proporganda is a very critical issue. I'm actually upset that the FCC hasn't charged them with misleading news, being overly bias(although every news station is a little bias, fox news just takes it too far) and all while thwy declare themselves as 'fair and balanced'. we all know how evil fox news is, but its worse to know some people actually follow them.

    September 28, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  24. Philip P.

    This is our president? Or is he a junk yard dog? MSNBC doesn't have a particular point of view that they are pushing. The man is completely out of his league and our country is bleeding because of ineptness.

    September 28, 2010 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  25. jrddk7

    White House states the obvious: More at 11.

    September 28, 2010 03:05 pm at 3:05 pm |
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