"Voice Of The Opposition": Fox Kicks Off 2012 Campaign Against Obama


On April 4, President Obama officially announced his 2012 re-election campaign. Fox News predictably responded by acting as the "voice of the opposition," renewing its attacks on Obama.

Fox News: Home To The Anti-Obama Campaign

Fox & Friends Recounts The "President's Broken Promises." During the April 5 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, a segment aired in which the co-hosts discussed, at length, what they considered to be Obama's broken promises from his first campaign. During the segment, on-screen text read, "President's Broken Promises; 9/11 Decision Isn't Obama's First Flip-Flop." Additionally, the segment included a list of Obama's so-called "broken promises," which were read by co-hosts Gretchen Carlson and Steve Doocy. [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 4/5/11]

Fox & Friends Hosts Priebus To Bash Obama For Re-Election Bid, Airs Anti-Obama GOP Ad. Later during the April 5 Fox & Friends, co-host Gretchen Carlson interviewed Republican National Committee chair Reince Priebus to attack Obama. Carlson noted that Obama had "kicked ... off" his re-election campaign with a YouTube video, adding: "Well, now, your organization, the RNC has released a new ad as well. What's the difference with yours compared to his?" While Fox & Friends aired the RNC's anti-Obama attack ad, Priebus said that Obama is "tone-deaf to the American people," had broken campaign promises, and has become a "plasticized" Washington politician. He also debuted the GOP's campaign slogan, "Hope Isn't Hiring." At no point did Carlson challenge Priebus' attacks on Obama. Instead, she asked Priebus: "How are you going to get the messaging out? Because, remember, last time, they [the Obama campaign] were supreme at the grassroots level." [Fox & Friends, 4/5/11]

On O'Reilly, Hume Promotes Pawlenty And Romney Against Obama. During the April 4 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor, Bill O'Reilly hosted Fox senior political analyst Brit Hume to weigh in on Obama's re-election campaign announcement and also to discuss potential GOP candidates. During the segment, Hume stated that "[Tim] Pawlenty and [Mitt] Romney both are the kind of candidates who I think could win without any trouble." [Fox News, The O'Reilly Factor, 4/4/11]

Cavuto Hosts Quinnipiac Pollster To Plug "Potential GOP Candidates." On April 4, Fox Business host Neil Cavuto hosted Quinnipiac University pollster Peter Brown to discuss the president's re-election campaign as well as possible GOP strategy for beating the president. During the broadcast, Cavuto hyped "potential GOP candidates" and showed two separate maps of areas Obama and Democrats lost in both the 2008 and 2010 elections. [Fox Business, Cavuto, 4/4/11]

Cavuto: "Mr. President, Exactly What Did You Do That You Said You Would Do To Get In Office?" Cavuto concluded his show by posing several questions about Obama's policies over the past two years of his presidency. Cavuto stated: "I've just gotta ask. Mr. President, exactly what did you do that you said you would do to get in office?" He went on to say: "Mr. President, you are a great politician. Sadly, sir, you ain't exactly proving to be a great president." [Fox Business, Cavuto, 4/4/11]

Morris Campaigns Against Obama: "I Think We're Going To Beat Him In 2012." During the April 4 edition of Fox News' Hannity, Fox News contributor Dick Morris voiced his opposition to re-electing Obama. Morris stated: "I think that [Obama]'s in very bad shape, I think he's going to be in even worse shape, and I think we're going to beat him in 2012. But we need to beat him this week in Congress." [Fox News, Hannity, 4/4/11]

Nothing New(s) To Report: Fox Has Been The "Voice Of Opposition" Since 2008

Top Fox Executive Bill Sammon Admits He Lied On-Air About Obama's Ties To Socialism During 2008 Campaign. As Media Matters previously reported, Fox News Washington managing editor Bill Sammon boasted to a cruise-ship audience that he lied repeatedly during the closing days of the 2008 presidential campaign when he speculated on-air "about whether Barack Obama really advocated socialism." Indeed, in the lead-up to the 2008 elections, Sammon used his position as a top Fox News editor to engage in a campaign to link Obama to "Marxists" and "socialism." [Media Matters, 3/29/11, 3/29/11]

Fox Linked Obama To Socialism At Least 35 Times In Run-Up To 2008 Election. In the nine days between Sammon's October 27, 2008, email to Fox journalists highlighting what he described as "Obama's references to socialism, liberalism, Marxism and Marxists" in his autobiography Dreams From My Father and the November 4 election, Fox employees linked Obama to socialism, Marxism, or Communism at least 35 times on air. In some cases, Fox employees directly said or suggested that Obama was linked to socialism; in other cases, they gratuitously mentioned accusations made by "Joe the Plumber" or others. [Media Matters, 3/29/11]

"Voice Of The Opposition": Fox News Won The 2010 Election. During the 2010 election cycle, Fox News, its employees, and its parent company engaged in an unprecedented campaign in support of the Republican Party. The network served as the communications and fundraising wing of the GOP while fervently promoting -- and sometimes creating -- the party's candidates. [Media Matters, 11/2/10]

Fox Is Home To Countless Anti-Obama Conspiracy Theories. Fox News and its employees have played a role in hosting, promoting, and repeating conspiracy theories -- including claims that Obama isn't a U.S. citizen, 9-11 conspiracy theories, suggestions that Obama is a Muslim, and conspiracies involving the Gulf oil spill. [Media Matters, 11/29/10]

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