Fox & Friends' “softball” interview with Angle is right on par

A Fox affiliate in Las Vegas recently criticized Fox & Friends for its “softball” interview with Nevada Senate candidate Sharron Angle, as being “rife with inaccuracies, softball questions and poor research on the part of the producers and hosts.” Fox & Friends' treatment of Angle is not unusual; the hosts routinely interview Republican congressional candidates and provide them with a platform to promote their campaigns, aiding them with leading questions and statements.

Fox affiliate slammed Fox & Friends for giving Angle a “softball” interview

Fox & Friends goes easy on Angle, suggesting it's “misinformation” and “not true” that Angle wants to “get rid of Social Security.” On the June 14 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, hosts Steve Doocy, Gretchen Carlson and Brian Kilmeade brought Angle, the Republican nominee in the Nevada Senate race, on for an “exclusive” interview. Carlson asked her about how “it must be such a whirl-wind experience for you, somebody who really has not been in politics before,” Kilmeade asked her what “message” Nevadans should “be taking by... giving you the nomination,” and Doocy asked her: "[A] lot of people in the mainstream media...are trying to marginalize the Tea Party. They shouldn't, should they?"

At the end of the interview, Doocy falsely suggested that it is “misinformation” and “not true” that Angle wants to “get rid of Social Security,” when in fact, Angle's campaign website advocates “transition[ing] out” Social Security.

Fox5 hits Fox & Friends for “inaccuracies, softball questions, and poor research.” Fox5 (KVVU), Las Vegas' Fox affiliate, strongly criticized Fox & Friends for the interview, calling it “rife with inaccuracies, softball questions and poor research on the part of the producers and hosts.” The article also noted that Doocy twisted Angle's position on Social Security. From Fox5's article:

Republican nominee Sharron Angle appeared on the cable news program Monday morning in an interview rife with inaccuracies, softball questions and poor research on the part of the producers and hosts.


It must have stung when Gretchen Carlson opened by asking the four-term assemblywoman and former minority whip about the “whirlwind experience” she's having as “someone who really has not been in politics before.”


Carlson's co-host Steve Doocy also left some audience members scratching their heads when he said Angle had been endorsed by Sarah Palin. She hasn't.

Reid's team will feast on the interview, especially Doocy's final question, one of the few that asked Angle about her platform.

“Perhaps it's a misinformation or mischaracterization, but some have said you are out to get rid of Social Security. That's not true, right?” he said.

Angle called it “nonsense” and said she wants to “personalize” Social Security, so the government cannot “raid” it. Her website advocates free market alternatives and transitioning out Social Security.

Fox & Friends' interviews with GOP candidates are routinely softballs

Doocy tells Brown that Democrats “are really trying to gang up on you,” while Brown fundraises. Then-Republican Senate candidate Scott Brown (MA) appeared on the program January 14. During the interview, Doocy told Brown he had “Democrats panicked up there,” and asked him what he planned to do in the Senate, allowing Brown a lengthy and uninterrupted response. Doocy also asked him, “it really bugs you when people refer to that particular Senate seat as 'Ted Kennedy's Senate seat.' It's not Ted Kennedy's seat, is it?” Then, after noting several groups campaigning against Brown, Doocy said, “You can see, Scott, that the forces on the other side are really trying to gang up on you.” In response, Brown plugged his campaign website for donations.

Doocy, Perino open Fiorina interview by asking “how did you do it?” and “how much are you looking forward to taking on Barbara Boxer?” Republican Senate Candidate Carly Fiorina (CA) appeared on the program June 9. Doocy and Perino began the interview by asking her “how did you do it [win the GOP nomination],” and “how much are you looking forward to taking on Barbara Boxer come this November?” They also asked her whether she was going to “pool her resources” with gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman (CA) because Democrats “going to come at you with all the firepower that they've got,” and whether she's “willing to spend a bunch more” on the campaign. At one point, Kilmeade asked her how she would “answer” accusations from Boxer about her time at Hewlett Packard.

Doocy asks Haley about the “crazy allegations” made during the campaign and tells her she is “lucky” to have a Palin endorsement. Republican gubernatorial candidate Nikki Haley (SC) also appeared on the program June 9. During the interview, Doocy noted “these crazy allegations out there that you have denied,” and asked her why her opponents would “make that stuff up?” Perino stated that “the guys were quite desperate because they couldn't win on the merits,” and asked Haley what her “biggest challenges going into” the election will be. Later, Doocy stated that Haley is “lucky because Governor Sarah Palin, she selected just a handful of candidates to were one of them.” He asked her, “Have you spoken to her since your win? If you did, what was the conversation like?”

Kilmeade introduces Rubio as “soon to be senator, according to some.” Republican Senate candidate Marco Rubio (FL) appeared on the program February 5. During the interview, Kilmeade introduced Rubio as “one of the great upstart political stories right now in America,” and “soon to be senator, according to some.”

Camerota asks DioGuardi “what's your platform,” and asks him about his American Idol daughter. Republican Senate candidate Joe DioGuardi (NY) appeared on the program March 16. Guest-host Alisyn Camerota asked him “what's your platform, why are you getting back into this racket?” After DioGuardi spoke a length, Kilmeade said, “you know how much work this's going to be hard, especially in New York, to be a Republican,” and asked DioGuardi what his daughter, American Idol's Kara DioGuardi, thought about his campaign. They also asked him about his daughter's appearance on American Idol, in which she made a “memorable” “mark” by wearing a bikini.

Kilmeade asks Johnson “What role do you think the tea party has had in inspiring you?” Republican congressional candidate Ron Johnson (WI) appeared on the program June 1. Kilmeade asked him during interview, “Does this seem real to you?” and “what role do you think the tea party has had in inspiring you and supporting you?” After Johnson replied that he was concerned with the “loss of freedom” and that “Obamacare” was a “huge assault on our freedom,” Kilmeade asked, “when that happened, instead of just complaining about it or holding court with your friends in your neighborhood, you took action?” Kilmeade also asked him “what do you plan on doing if you get in?” and what his “plan” is for winning over the tea party.

Fox & Friends hosts Vets for Freedom exec to plug 10 GOP candidates. Vets for Freedom Executive Director Pete Hegseth appeared on the program May 31 to promote 10 GOP congressional candidates his organization is endorsing. Guest host Dave Briggs asked him, “why is it of particular importance to get these vets... elected to Congress?” and read through biographies of some of the veterans that Hegseth was “hoping win their congressional battles in 2010.”

Kilmeade ignores key question about detainee assault in promoting West candidacy, military expertise. Republican congressional candidate Lt. Col. Allen West appeared on the program February 8. During the interview, Kilmeade said West's “personal interrogation tactic...saved a lot of lives in Iraq,” and then repeatedly allowed West to criticize the Obama administration for its handling of the Northwest Airlines bombing suspect while stating that West had “dealt with Al Qaeda directly.” Kilmeade did not ask West about his reported resignation from the military after he assaulted a detainee.

Kilmeade hosts candidates from Conservative Freshman Coalition to “share” their “mission.” On April 29, Kilmeade hosted two Republican congressional candidates from the Conservative Freshman Coalition, a group that “promotes conservative values.” He asked them why it's “necessary” to run, why they were a part of the coalition, what their “take” is on Charlie Crist's run as an independent, and where they stand on illegal immigration. At the end, he thanked them for coming on to “share your mission.”

Fox & Friends plugged campaign for 90-year-old Republican candidate, who admitted Fox News' Ailes was once his manager. Republican congressional candidate John Snyder (IN) appeared on the program March 15. Kilmeade noted that Snyder, had “never really felt compelled to run for Washington - an office in Washington,” and asked him whether he really felt “things are that bad at this point, throughout your entire life, they've never been worse than now?” After Snyder noted Ailes was once his campaign manager, Doocy stated that Snyder wasn't taking donations and asked him, “you're going to just come up with all the cash yourself?” After Kilmeade said, “the top of your agenda is about spending, correct?” Doocy stated: “There are certainly a lot of people across the country who feel the same way -- they're fed up. Few have taken such drastic measures and put off retirement to run for Congress.”