On eve of Dem Convention, FOX News Sunday gave final say to Kerry-basher Howie Carr

››› ››› ANDREW SEIFTER

One day before the start of the Democratic National Convention in Boston, FOX News Sunday with Chris Wallace (FOX Broadcasting Company's primary Sunday news program, which is also replayed on the "fair and balanced" FOX News Channel) devoted its final segment to an account of the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, Senator John Kerry (D-MA), by Boston Herald columnist Howie Carr. Carr is a right-wing radio host and a self-described tabloid journalist (for several Rupert Murdoch-owned newspapers). He has a long history of using racially charged and offensive language to score conservative political points. On the July 25 edition of FOX News Sunday, Carr smeared Kerry and the convention.

In a July 16 C-SPAN appearance, Carr described Kerry as "the most successful gigolo in the United States." His radio show's website is littered with attacks on Kerry, ranging from raising the senator's rumored cosmetic use of Botox, to mocking his supposed envy of President John F. Kennedy, to reviving the discredited rumor that Kerry had an affair with journalist Alexandra Polier.

From the July 25 edition of FOX Broadcasting Company's FOX News Sunday with Chris Wallace:

CARR: I refuse to believe that the American people will elect this palpable empty suit [Kerry] as president.

WALLACE: What don't we know about him?

CARR: He's one of these people that always wants to go to the head of the line, he doesn't want to wait in line, whether he's waiting at an ice-cream stand or the Department of Motor Vehicles.

WALLACE: You mean that literally, that you have stories of him cutting in line to get ahead of people.

CARR: Yes, and when you call him on it, he says, "Do you know who I am?" And now, he's reached this pinnacle of his existence, and he has a butler and flunkies to tell people, "Do you know who he is?"

[...]

CARR: Bill Clinton, a complete fraud, I can't believe the people of America couldn't see through him.

Carr, who describes himself as a "proud tabloid journalist" and an "entertainer," defended his statements on FOX News Sunday: "[A]lmost all of the people I attack have stepped forward, and they deserve a beating."

Targets of Carr's previous "beatings" include Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA), whom Carr has called "Fat Boy" and "The Great White Whale"; Muslims, whom he described as "towelheads" in rushing to incorrectly blame Arab terrorists for the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995; welfare mothers, whom he labeled "gimme girls"; and non-fluent English speakers.

In addition to appearing in the Boston Herald -- which was owned by Rupert Murdoch until 1994 and is now owned by Murdoch protégé Patrick Purcell -- Carr's columns are also published in the New York Post (which, like FOX, is owned by Murdoch's News Corporation).*

FOX News Sunday host Chris Wallace appeared to defend the program's objectivity when he promised, in closing the show, to have the "same kind of fair and balanced power player when the Republicans meet next month in New York."

*Correction: When this item was first published, it incorrectly stated that the Boston Herald is currently owned by News Corporation. [back to article]

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