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. qiggy

    And CNN, PBS, CBS, ABC, NBC, BET, MSNBC all bowed and said "right on, your highness, amen". They then went to a lunch with Clooney, sponsored by Oprah, with Letterman and SNL for entertainment, all paid for by Oprah, as they strategized on more ways to raise taxes and redistribute working class income. If only FOX would join the Borg, there would be no version told but the official politically correct liberal one. I thought the socialist activist crowd liked activists and dissent. It seems to only be the case when it works in their favor.

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

    I think Pres Obama is "destructive" for long-term growth in America...

    September 28, 2010 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  3. BethTX

    Of course he does. Fox is the only network not buying into his incredible BS and attempts to lead this country to destruction through socialism and the nanny state.

    September 28, 2010 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  4. frizzy

    So, Mr. Obama, just what do you call the uber-right media's coverage and blind support of your administration and policies?

    September 28, 2010 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  5. bdm

    fox biased? ya think??? i've grown so weary of the hatred they push and in turn is responded to by other cable news programs that i've quit watching news all together. takes too much energy to be pissed off all the time.

    September 28, 2010 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  6. kakaraka

    Fox is not a news organization. Should it be in Africa or Europe, it will be already closed for diffamation, misinformation, incitation to anger and hate instead of breaking the news. They promote the talking points of republican party, disrespect the white house, invite radical, extremists insult, hate the president without given an apportunity to anyone to oppose their views. The women on the Hanity, OReilly, Beck etc are very wicked, hateful and disrecpectful to the president. Fox is not a news media. I totally agree with the president. I think media should be regulated in this area. No misinformation, hate, anger, one party talking point promotion. Fox is totally unfair and unbalanced.

    September 28, 2010 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  7. SayWhat

    Way to go Mr. President, keep calling them out. The only problem however, is that now the Fox snake oil salemen will go into their pose of abused underdogs whose right to free speech is being attacked and the imbecilic faithfull will all nod their heads in assent.

    September 28, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  8. Transparent

    Fox is right-wing propaganda making people fall for blatant demogoguery against their own best interests. Faux news hides its cowering politicos against being asked real questions from credible news sources, while promoting hatemongering, greed, and lies against fellow Americans. Fox is indeed destructive to the middle class in our country.

    September 28, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  9. Cpom Athens GA

    Goebbels would have loved to have a 24 hour propaganda tool like Fox. Imagine the influence the Nazi's could have had with their versions of Glenn Beck, et al.

    September 28, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  10. Joecooool

    Fox isn't news, its right wing nonsense.

    I wish he would pull their White House credentials.

    September 28, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  11. jeff

    Hhat a joke. Like CNN does not do the same thing, yet on the very left liberal side.

    September 28, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  12. Raul

    Pretty scary when government leaders start bashing a free press and using words like "destructive". I think he means that it is destructive to his corrupt administration. I wonder what viewpoint he thinks CNN/MSNBC/ABC/CBS et al. push on their viewers. They are the propaganda behind the whole democrat machine.

    September 28, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  13. Marco

    Fox News is TABLOID, pure and simple. The danger is that it classifies itself as "news," and sufficient numbers of idiots believe that. However, it's merely a product of the ability of the ignorant masses to think critically – if the public did that, Fox would be about as relevant as the Weekly World News and its Bat Boy stories...

    September 28, 2010 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  14. RapierEdge

    And the President doesn't feel that pushing his own, personal points of view on the American people, (despite majorities being against those views), isn't destructive to the country, but beneficial. But of course, the majority of the American people are uneducated, don't know what's really good for them, and therefore, their view points and opinions don't matter. Sometimes I wonder if the President actually listens to what he is saying.

    September 28, 2010 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  15. Kevin

    Where are the President's cries of "unfair" when CNN, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, ABC, and others, pander and fawn all over the progressives and their philosophy? Whether Fox news is biased or not is debatable and subjective. What's not in dispute is that they don't fall all over themselves trying to push or endorse his agenda.

    September 28, 2010 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  16. Heriberto Rodriguez

    Mr. President, you need to take into consideration that FOX News is comedy, don't be so hard on them.

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

    President Obama – the truth sometimes hurts, doesn't it. More power to Fox News for putting it out there.

    September 28, 2010 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  18. larry

    Decades of the big three channels, the NY Times, and countless other liberal newspapers pushing the Progressive view and now he's upset with one channel.

    The thin skinned social activist can't take the heat so get out of the kirchen.

    September 28, 2010 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  19. Josh

    Does Obama think Rachel Maddow and Keith Oberman are equally destructive, or does this statement apply expressly to groups/ individuals that agree with and do not question his policies?

    September 28, 2010 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  20. tcww

    Winston Churchill once said, "Some people's idea of free speech is that they are free to say what they like but if anyone says anything back, that is an outrage."

    September 28, 2010 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  21. Rob in MO

    Right on, Mr President. Tell it like it is.

    September 28, 2010 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  22. T. Philip

    Where this country heading too? Is President Obama president of a democratic country or a dictotorial country like Kenya? Please give more credit to the inteligence of the American public. People can see all side of the news and make an informed decision. Let freedom of press still reign for all media not just media like MSNBC.

    September 28, 2010 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  23. cindy

    Fox puts him in a bad light, exposes thngs he does not want to be exposed. Fox is not destructive to America, Obama is!!!

    September 28, 2010 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  24. Dan

    Kind of like CNN, MSNBC, The NY Times, LA Times, Rolling Stone Magazine all pushing their politcal views? Or is it only a problem when Fox does it?

    September 28, 2010 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  25. betterdays

    And when MSNBC airs six hours of programming every night promoting the notion that poverty can be eliminated by taking money from the wealthy, and relentlessly brands virtually everyone who disagrees with this notion as "racist" and/or "insane," that's not "clearly biased?"

    You know what's destructive to America? Pretty much the entire past fifty years of Washington's domestic policy, regardless of who has been passing the laws. That's what.

    September 28, 2010 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
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