O'Reilly downplayed Wallace's ridicule of Teresa Heinz Kerry as Eva Perón: Nobody offended except for " Ms. magazine babes"


On July 29, Elaine Lafferty, editor-in-chief of Ms. magazine, appeared on FOX News Channel's The O'Reilly Factor to discuss FOX News anchor Chris Wallace's recent comparison of Teresa Heinz Kerry to Eva Perón, wife of former Argentinean dictator Juan Perón, during Wallace's July 27 coverage of the Democratic National Convention. The incident -- which was first reported by Media Matters for America on July 28 -- occurred when Wallace, in his capacity as a FOX News reporter, mocked Heinz Kerry's speech at the convention by commenting: "[B]y the end, I half expected her to break out into 'Don't Cry for Me, Argentina.'"

On the July 29 edition of his FOX News Channel show, Bill O'Reilly opened his conversation with Lafferty by saying, "Now, come on, Elaine, that was about as harmless as it comes. You guys are complaining about this?" O'Reilly then added, "I don't think anybody watching this broadcast tonight, with the exception of you and the Ms. magazine babes, are offended by that comment." Lafferty responded by saying, "I was offended and I was surprised, because Chris Wallace is a veteran journalist, and he could do better than that."

On July 28, Ms. released a statement calling on FOX News "to apologize for Chris Wallace's unprecedented attack on Teresa Heinz Kerry." A statement from the Feminist Majority Foundation, which publishes Ms., cited Media Matters for America's July 28 item in its assertion that "Fox News reporters Chris Wallace and Brian Kilmeade [who was also mentioned in the MMFA item] responded Tuesday evening to potential First Lady Teresa Heinz Kerry's prime-time speech with inappropriate xenophobic remarks."

Posted In
Diversity & Discrimination, Gender
2004 Elections
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