The first hour of Fox News' flagship morning show Fox & Friends entirely ignored Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s continued refusal to admit that President Obama was born in the United States, while his campaign -- not the candidate himself -- released a statement seeking to put criticisms of Trump’s racist and conspiratorial claims to rest by conceding that President Obama is a U.S. born citizen. The morning show did find time, however, to continue hyping Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s recent pneumonia diagnosis, among other trivial news items.
Trump “refused to say whether he believes Obama was born in Hawaii” in a September 15 interview with The Washington Post, following years of Trump’s racist birther crusade against the president. Hours later, the campaign released a statement saying that “Mr. Trump believes that President Obama was born in the United States,” and “was finally able to bring this ugly incident to its conclusion” in 2011. The statement was slammed for being “riddled with falsehoods.”
Fox & Friends’ first hour did not discuss any of the new developments in Trump’s never-ending racist birther saga. Fox’s birther blackout is in keeping with the network’s history of cheerleading Trump’s racist attacks on the president. In the immediate weeks after Trump first speculated about President Obama’s birthplace in 2011, Fox significantly ramped up its coverage of birther conspiracies.
Some media critics noticed Fox’s glaring omission this morning:
Though the program apparently did not find time to discuss Trump’s birther statements, Fox & Friends did devote time to harping on Clinton’s pneumonia diagnosis:
As well as the “Wussification of America”:
Samsung phones exploding:
Jimmy Fallon messing up Trump’s hair:
Fox & Friends’ first mention of the incident was not until more than halfway through the show’s 2nd hour. In a very brief mention of the Trump campaign statement, the hosts agreed Trump “does think [Obama] was born in the United States,” so Trump should “put that one away.”