Fox Again Cries "Class Warfare"

››› ››› REMINGTON SHEPARD

Fox has once again accused President Obama of engaging in "class warfare," this time in response to Obama's deficit-reduction plan, which reportedly calls for increasing taxes on the wealthy.

Fox Figures Claim Obama's Deficit-Reduction Plan Is "Class Warfare"

Doocy: "The President Is Talking About Raising Taxes, And, You Know, Effectively Class Warfare." On the September 19 broadcast of Fox News' Fox & Friends, co-host Steve Doocy claimed Obama's deficit-reduction plan is "effectively class warfare." From the broadcast:

GRETCHEN CARLSON (co-host): The analogy that Warren Buffett always makes is that why should my secretary pay more taxes than I do? But that's not really a fair comparison, because he's talking about what he pays -- the tax on his capital gains. He makes most of his money on investment income. Right now that's at 15 percent. So really it's comparing apples and oranges, not the income that you're going out and making on a daily basis when you go to work.

DOOCY: You know, so many people say 'is it really a good idea to raise taxes during what sure seems or feels like a double-dip recession?' And then what the president will unveil later today as well is that these taxes will go on to the shoulders of the job creators and the most successful people in this country. But ultimately, if the president is talking about raising taxes and, you know, effectively class warfare, wouldn't it make more sense to be talking about total tax reform, or like Herman Cain's plan -- the 9, 9, 9 -- just make it simple going forward. [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 9/19/11, via Media Matters]

Malkin: Deficit-Reduction Plan "Absolutely" Class Warfare. Later on the September 19 broadcast of Fox News' Fox & Friends, Doocy asked Fox News contributor Michelle Malkin if Obama's deficit-reduction plan is class warfare. Malkin replied, "Absolutely." From the broadcast:

MALKIN: And not only that, of course, the whole idea of a millionaire's tax is a misnomer. Because under the Democrat definition we're talking about non-wealthy people who are earning, say, $250,000 or more. And -- and of course this all comes at a time when people outside of Washington understand that if you're going to encourage more capital, encourage more risk-taking, encourage more investment, this is exactly the wrong way to do it.

DOOCY: Paul Ryan was on Fox News Sunday yesterday with our friend Chris Wallace, and he was talking about what this is and that is class warfare. Watch.

REP. PAUL RYAN (R-WI) [video clip]: Class warfare, Chris, may make for really good politics, but it makes for rotten economics. If you tax something more, Chris, you get less of it. If you tax job [creators] more, you get less job creation. If you tax investment more, you get less investment.

DOOCY: Class warfare?

MALKIN: Absolutely. Like I said, if you -- if you want to talk about millionaires and billionaires, let's talk about all those Obama bundlers who have been siphoning off all the stimulus money for bankrupt companies. And in any case, if Warren Buffett wants to pay more taxes, there is nothing stopping him. There's a Treasury Department website for people who want to voluntarily give money. It's not doing very well. And on top of that, of course, Berkshire-Hathaway, his company, owes at least a billion dollars in back taxes. Why don't we start there? [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 9/19/11]

Doocy: Obama's Deficit-Reduction Plan "Is Class Warfare." In a later segment during the September 19 Fox & Friends, Doocy said that Obama's plan is "absolutely" "class warfare." From the broadcast:

DOOCY: It's been great having you. Real quickly, the lightning round right now. It sounds like the president is going to propose some gigantic tax hikes.

JIM PINKERTON (Fox News contributor): And I thought he was trying to offer a stimulus to the economy and he wants to offer a couple of trillion dollars of tax increases. I don't get it. And I don't think the Democrats will pass it.

ELLEN RATNER (Fox News contributor): I think the Democrats will pass it. I don't think your Republicans are going to pass it. They'll put a stick right in the mud there; but I think honestly, it's the best thing to happen. Very wealthy people can afford to pay more taxes.

DOOCY: But Ellen, it is class warfare.

RATNER: It is not class warfare.

DOOCY: It absolutely is. [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 9/19/11]

Camerota: "Is The White House Inciting Class Warfare?" On the September 18 broadcast of Fox News' Fox & Friends Sunday, co-host Alisyn Camerota asked if the White House is "inciting class warfare." [Fox News, Fox & Friends Sunday, 9/18/11, via Media Matters]

Fox Nation: "Obama Declares Class Warfare." From a September 18 Fox Nation post:

Fox Nation class warfare

[Fox Nation, 9/18/11]

Fox Often Accuses Obama Of Engaging in Class Warfare ...

Fox Figures Call Obama's Jobs Bill "Class Warfare." Earlier this month, Fox figures responded to Obama's jobs bill by claiming that Obama is engaged in "class warfare ... one of those soak the rich things" and that Obama "could not help but resort to using the same kind of class warfare." [Media Matters, 9/13/11]

Fox Called Obama's Call For A "Balanced Approach" To Deficit Reduction "Class Warfare." In August, Fox figures accused Obama of "conducting what is clearly class warfare" by calling for a "balanced approach" to deficit reduction. [Media Matters, 8/4/11]

... While Routinely Engaging In It

Fox Cited Ownership Of Appliances To Downplay Hardship Of Poverty In America. In July, Fox News figures cited a Heritage Foundation report about the ownership of appliances among the poor in America to ask, in Bill O'Reilly's words: "So how can you be so poor and have all this stuff?" [Media Matters, 7/22/11]

Fox's Charles Payne Complained That The Poor "Aren't Embarrassed" That They Need Anti-Poverty Programs. Fox Business' Charles Payne complained that people "aren't embarrassed" that they need anti-poverty programs including food stamps and unemployment insurance. [Fox Business, Varney & Co., 5/19/11, via Media Matters]

Fox Business Pitted The "Takers" Of "Government Handouts" Against The "Makers." After a National Bureau of Economic Research study concluded that social safety net programs, including Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, were highly effective at keeping people out of poverty, Fox Business launched a weeklong series pitting the "takers" of "government handouts" against the "makers" in the economy. [Media Matters, 5/24/11]

Fox Business Hosts Warned That Increased Use Of Food Stamps During A Recession Could Lead To "Economic Dependence." Fox Business' John Stossel and Chris Cotter warned that an increase in food stamps usage during the recession could lead to "economic dependence." [Media Matters, 8/17/11]

Fox's Byrnes: "What's Unfair" About The Tax Code Is The Earned Income Tax Credit. Fox Business' Cheryl Casone suggested that subjecting the poor to heavier taxation was "a way to solve America's debt crisis," while Fox's Tracy Byrnes said that "what's unfair" about the tax code is the Earned Income Tax Credit for low- and middle-income Americans. [Media Matters, 6/26/10]

Fox's Varney: The Earned Income Tax Credit Is A "Welfare Scheme." On the June 15 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, Fox Business host Stuart Varney said:

VARNEY: Whenever you've got a cash welfare system you are going to have people gaming that system. What you have not got on the screen is the Earned Income Tax Credit, which is by far the biggest cash -- I'm going to call it a welfare scheme. That is known as the most corrupt government program. [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 6/15/11 via Media Matters]

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