Special Report highlights Brown's fundraising, ignores Fox's role in helping him do so
Research ››› ››› TERRY KREPEL
In a report on the Massachusetts special Senate election on Fox News' Special Report, correspondent Molly Line highlighted how the campaign of Republican candidate Scott Brown claims "they've raised $1.3 million in the last 24 hours," but made no mention of Fox News' role in helping Brown raise some of that money. Brown has made several appearances on Fox News to solicit funds and volunteers for his campaign -- two of which took place in "the last 24 hours."
From the January 12 edition of Fox News' Special Report with Bret Baier:
LINE: Aware of the closeness of this race, Democrats have moved a national party operative here to the state to help [Democratic candidate Martha] Coakley. Senator John Kerry has sent out a fundraising letter citing this race as a dead heat, and President Bill Clinton -- former President Bill Clinton -- will be here on Friday to help in the race as well, though the White House saying President Obama not expected to be here in the state. As for Scott Brown's campaign, they say they've raised $1.3 million in the last 24 hours, and they'll be out doing some retail politicking in these final hours. Bret?
In Fox News appearances -- two in "the last 24 hours" -- Brown encouraged viewers to donate money
On Fox, Brown encouraged viewers to visit his campaign website to find out "how to help with donating and volunteering." As Media Matters for America has documented, in appearances on Fox News' America's Newsroom, On the Record, and Hannity, Brown pointed viewers to his campaign website, solicited funds for his campaign, and also cited RedInvadesBlue.com, where, he said, "we have a money bomb right now that's hitting ... and you can help me fight back against the machine."
Brown made two fund-soliciting appearances in the "last 24 hours" before Special Report. Two of Brown's Fox News appearances occurred in the 24 hours preceding the January 12 edition of Special Report -- on the January 11 edition of On The Record with Greta Van Susteren and on the January 12 edition of America's Newsroom. Brown solicited donations for his campaign in both appearances.
From the January 12 edition of Fox News' America's Newsroom:
BROWN: There's political chicanery. I'm used to it in Massachusetts. And people can go to BrownForUSSenate.com, they can learn more about that and how to help with donating and volunteering.
From the January 11 edition of Fox News' On The Record with Greta Van Susteren:
BROWN: Martha's a good person, but she's wrong on all the issues. And the people of Massachusetts are upset at the taxing, the spending, the backroom deals. Martha Coakley's position on terror -- it's outrageous. She said tonight that there are no terrorists in Afghanistan. That's the type of person who has a policy that is very scary, especially when we're trying to provide the tools and resources for our soldiers to keep them safe. And if people want to learn more, they can certainly go to BrownForUSSenate.com.
But we have a money bomb right now that's hitting, and you can go to RedInvadesBlue.com, and you can help me fight back against the machine, because the negative ads -- the second I walked off the stage, the negative ads have started. And you all around the country can make a big, big difference in this race.
Fox "political analyst" Morris used position to fundraise in support of Brown
"Please, please help" Brown, Morris urged viewers. During the January 11 edition of Fox News' Hannity, political analyst Dick Morris urged viewers to "go to DickMorris.com ... to help elect Brown," because if "we win this fight, then there will never be another victory for Obama." DickMorris.com includes a fundraising plea to help the group the League of American Voters -- for which Morris is chief strategist -- "raise $300,000 for a last minute media buy to push Brown and the Republicans to victory"; Fox News executives allowed Morris to solicit funds for Republican efforts despite reportedly telling colleague Mike Huckabee to cease conflict-of-interest promotions that help his political action committee.
Fox News has history of giving airtime to, shilling for Republican candidates
Conservative candidates stump on Fox during lead-up to elections. In the two weeks leading up to the November 3, 2009, elections, Conservative Party congressional candidate Doug Hoffman, New Jersey Republican gubernatorial candidate Chris Christie, and Virginia Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell appeared on Fox News and its personalities' radio shows at least 16 times for live interviews lasting a total of 114 minutes and 36 seconds. Further, numerous Fox News hosts and political analysts encouraged voters to donate to and volunteer and vote for GOP and conservative candidates, including Christie, McDonnell, and Hoffman.