Does President Obama watch Fox News “on a regular basis”?
He appeared to suggest as much today at Georgetown University during a conference on poverty:
There’s always been a strain in American politics where you’ve got the middle class, and the question has been, who are you mad at, if you’re struggling; if you’re working, but you don’t seem to be getting ahead. And over the last 40 years, sadly, I think there’s been an effort to either make folks mad at folks at the top, or to be mad at folks at the bottom. And I think the effort to suggest that the poor are sponges, leeches, don’t want to work, are lazy, are undeserving, got traction. And, look, it’s still being propagated.
I mean, I have to say that if you watch Fox News on a regular basis, it is a constant menu — they will find folks who make me mad. I don’t know where they find them. They’re like, “I don’t want to work, I just want a free Obama phone” — or whatever. And that becomes an entire narrative, right? That gets worked up. And very rarely do you hear an interview of a waitress — which is much more typical — who’s raising a couple of kids and is doing everything right but still can’t pay the bills.
Bold text added to highlight the president’s apparent expertise on Fox News content. That expertise must come from surrogate Fox News watchers, because the president “does not watch cable news,” according to Capital New York’s Jeremy Barr. These credentials — being critical of Fox News while not often watching Fox News — put the president in good company among media critics nationwide.
Disparaging remarks about the leading cable news network fall into a comfort zone for the president. He has rapped Fox News for alleged delusions about health-care reform, for suppressing bipartisanship, for its allegedly “destructive” worldview, for distorting his record.
Even as Obama’s slams against Fox News pile up (and elevate the network), though, he’ll never pull even with Sean Hannity and his colleagues, who rip into him at an incalculable daily rate. Efforts to get comment from Fox News have fetched no response.