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. Jason

    Absolutely agree Mr. President. Well said!! One of the problems with free speech is it allows people to say whatever they want, even lies. No one holds Fox accountable.

    September 28, 2010 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  2. Kojo

    What pettiness from this president. In the same vein, I would like to know what he thinks about MSNBC or CNN? Just concentrate on doing a good job for the people of America and no amount of news can take that away from you. People are discerning enough.

    September 28, 2010 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  3. jay1975

    Of course he supports MSNBC who has been carrying his water for years and even their resident conservative seems left of middle America.

    September 28, 2010 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  4. Obozo VooDoo Economics 101: Spend your way to prosperity, tax your way out of recession.

    "ultimately destructive for the long-term growth of a country".....

    Do tell!! I think a majority of Americans think this very thing about YOU and the rest of the DemocRATS. In exactly 5 weeks we'll all be showing up to remove you destroyers from office. Obozo, unfortunately, will have to wait until 2012 for removal, if he even gets renominated.

    September 28, 2010 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  5. Bedtime for Obonzo

    So a "point of view" that differs from the Beloved Leader's is "destructive"? He's not satisfied having MSNBC, CBS, NBS, ABC, and CNN in his back pocket? His skin is so thin, I bet he suffers lots of paper cuts.

    September 28, 2010 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  6. Michael L

    Wow? War in Afghanistan, Nuclear Iran, China-Russia future economic powers, bad economy and President Obama focuses on Fox News? Seriously I am tired of this stuff, bashing another American entity which employs Americans and has the right to free speech and our President takes the time to comment on this small issue. I mean I want to hear Obama be tough on Iran's President. I voted for Obama because I thought he was a moderate with his "There are no blue states, no red states, we are the United States" speech. Obama has said the word Republican in his office than Bush said Democrats. I'm sad, but this independent voter will not be voting for him again. Shape up Obama you represent all Americans now.

    September 28, 2010 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  7. Joe

    He's scared of Fox because they don't have a love affair with him and hide the truth like the main stream media. Obama was elected because he was chosen by the MSM.

    September 28, 2010 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  8. John D

    Obozo is the one who is destuctive to this country and America now realizes it. Fox is the only one telling the truth about this moron and the Democrats and Republicans and he hates not having them swoon over every word the way everyone else does. He's is singlehandidly destroying the democrats and he is scared.

    September 28, 2010 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  9. Michael1959

    Obama and the Democrats offer nothing but scare and fear. They can not run on their accomplishments as there are none.

    September 28, 2010 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  10. Dave Harris

    One of the many ironies of this is how Fox promotes fear and hatred of foreigners (including claiming the president is one), while it itself is owned and run by a foreigner. Is Rupert Murdock really just about exploiting this country to make himself even more obscenely wealthy, or is his real goal to destroy America? "Or not?", as he would have Glen Beck say.

    September 28, 2010 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  11. soneill

    Fox News is literally killing CNN in ratings, it's no wonder you would publish this article. No one person is more destructive than Obama to America. This man and his party are a disgrace to this great nation and you and him and them are going to find that out the hard way November.

    September 28, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  12. Tam

    The people at FOX and their followers would not know who Hearst was. They don't know history, literature, nor science. The lowest of the lowest common denominator.

    September 28, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  13. nybnr

    The reason I don't watch Fox news – three words NEW YORK POST!

    September 28, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  14. Former Republican, but never again!

    Fox News is propaganda, plain and simple!

    September 28, 2010 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  15. Dean

    Obama is branching out a little. Up until now everything has been Bush's fault.

    September 28, 2010 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  16. Can't We All Just Get Along?

    It's been destructive for years. It panders to the unintelligent boors who don't have two working brain cells.

    September 28, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  17. Ernie

    Obama says that Fox News is 'destructive' to America, well look at what Obama has done to America. There's an old saying "He who lives in glass house shouldn't throw stones". Obama has proven that he is "destructive" the proof is in the pudding. He's wearing out the printing press, he has been told the "Recession" is over, people still don't have jobs, all the the people who he's has hired to assist him are leaving. I think the "Big BO" better start thinkking again who's "destructive".

    September 28, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  18. WOB

    No, Mr President, it is you, not Fox News, who is "destructive" to America's long-term growth. For you and your cronies to continue singling out Fox for attack is, in my opinion, in direct violation of our constitutional mandate for free speech. Of course, as your track record has proven, the Constitution hasn't slowed you down much in your endeavor to "fundamentally change" America. Mr President, it will be the People's time to speak come November.

    September 28, 2010 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  19. Jason

    or do you mean destructive to the Democrats sir. Or what about the other news networks the ones that put you in good light they are good for America. Next thing you'll say is Bush owns Fox and it's his fault for you sagging poll numbers

    September 28, 2010 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  20. Rick McDaniel

    Guess he is reaaaalllly feeling the heat of isn't he? Couldn't happen to a more deserving President.

    September 28, 2010 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  21. John Geheran

    Even if it were accurate that Fox News has a bias against the current administration, it serves as a credible counterweight to the other networks whose reporting is blatantly pro Obama.

    September 28, 2010 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  22. phoenix86

    Amazing. Obama is THE most dangerous individual to occupy the Whtie House. He is becoming mentally unstable. Look for attacks on Constitutional rights in the upcoming months as Obama melts down.

    Get ready for a Biden presidency.

    September 28, 2010 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  23. johnRJ08

    It is about time. FOX News, the home of Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity, is an affront to every legitimate journalist. And where do they find these pre-Iron Age women with the steel hair? They are setting women's rights back a century. When FOX spokesman Clemente said that the White House should have focused on "critical issues that Americans are concerned about", he failed to recognize the fact that his network has become a major contributor to the toxic political atmosphere in this country. And that atmosphere is blinding the electorate with phony news and scare tactics all designed to bring down this presidency.

    September 28, 2010 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  24. Twist

    Thank you for finally coming out and saying it

    September 28, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  25. JOhn

    Bias is not the problem. People can see through bias reporting fo rwhat it is. FOx news lies. NOt just in the reportin ghalf teh sotry but the re editing of clips, doctering pictures, removiing applause etc. They are in the business of disinformation and that is bad for the country no matter how you feel about politics.

    September 28, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
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