Fox & Friends crew ignored Cheney, Bush unpopularity as reasons they're not appearing with candidates

››› ››› BRIAN LEVY

On Fox & Friends First, Kelly Wright suggested that Vice President Dick Cheney's decision to spend Election Day "in Wyoming," rather than on the campaign trail, could be a "sign" that Cheney "isn't worried or nervous at all about the outcome of tomorrow's election." Other anchors also uncritically stated that the reason Florida gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist is not appearing with President Bush at a campaign rally is "so he can hit other cities." None of the anchors mentioned the fact that both have low approval ratings -- Cheney nationally and Bush in Florida.

On the November 6 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends First, Fox News reporter Kelly Wright suggested that Vice President Dick Cheney's decision to spend Election Day on a "hunting trip in Wyoming," rather than campaigning for Republican candidates, could be a "sign" that Cheney "isn't worried or nervous at all about the outcome of tomorrow's election." But polling suggests there may be another explanation for Cheney's absence on Election Day, an alternative explanation Wright did not mention -- Americans have an overwhelmingly unfavorable perception of Cheney. Similarly, co-host Gretchen Carlson uncritically stated that President Bush will be "in Florida stumping for [Republican] gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist" but that "Crist is skipping that event so he can hit other cities," without noting Bush's low job approval and favorability numbers in recent polls in Florida. Later in the program, co-host Brian Kilmeade repeated Carlson's report nearly verbatim.

In an October 19-23 Diageo/The Hotline poll, with a margin of error of +/- 4 percentage points, 19 percent of likely voters said they had a "strongly favorable" view of Cheney, while 16 percent said they had a "somewhat favorable" opinion of him and 10 percent had a "somewhat ... unfavorable" perception of him; 45 percent of likely voters responded that they had a "strongly ... unfavorable" view of Cheney. An October 5-8 New York Times/CBS News poll, with a +/- 3 percent margin of error, put Cheney's "unfavorable" rating at 48 percent, compared with the 20 percent of respondents who had a "favorable" opinion of him.

In an October 12-15 SurveyUSA News poll of Floridians with a +/- 4 percent margin of error, 41 percent of respondents said they "approve[d] ... of the job George W. Bush is doing as President," while 57 percent said they disapproved. In a Miami Herald Florida poll, conducted October 31-November 2, with a +/- 3.5 percent margin of error, 47.1 percent of respondents said they had a "favorable" opinion of Bush while 50.8 percent expressed the opposite.

From the November 6 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends First:

CARLSON: President Bush is sweeping through three states today to push GOP candidates. He starts in Florida stumping for gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist. Crist is skipping that event so he can hit other cities in these final hours.

[...]

WRIGHT: President Bush has been crisscrossing America, barnstorming states with his "Victory in 2006" rally, continues his frenetic campaign pace today. He'll be stumping for Republican candidates in Pensacola, Florida; Bentonville, Arkansas; and in Dallas, Texas.

[...]

WRIGHT: In this bitterly contested midterm, polls nationwide are showing many races are just too close to call and here's a note of particular interest. The polls are indeed so tight right now that Rahm Emanuel, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman, is quoted in The New York Times today as saying, "It makes him a little bit nervous." By the way, perhaps as a sign that Vice President Dick Cheney isn't worried or nervous at all about the outcome of tomorrow's election, when people go to the polls tomorrow, where will the vice president be? Well, he'll be enjoying his yearly hunting trip in Wyoming. Back to you, guys.

STEVE DOOCY: How did that last one go? That last hunting trip?

CARLSON: Oh-oh.

WRIGHT: Well -- I think he'll be taking aim at the election.

KILMEADE: That's the right thing to say.

DOOCY: That's exactly right.

From the November 6 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:

KILMEADE: President Bush is sweeping through three states today to push GOP candidates. He starts in Florida stumping for gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist. Crist is skipping that event so he can hit other cities in the final hours.

Network/Outlet
Fox News Channel
Person
Kelly Wright
Show/Publication
FOX & Friends First
Stories/Interests
2006 Elections
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