“Tell It Like It Is” : Fox Cheerleads For Former Colleague Newt Gingrich

Fox has renewed their enthusiastic promotion of GOP presidential candidate and former Fox News contributor New Gingrich following his recent surge in the polls. Fox has a long history of praising both Newt Gingrich and other Republican presidential candidates.

Fox Hosts, Contributors Praise Former Fox Employee Newt Gingrich As “The Smartest Guy In The Room”

Carlson: The “Thing People Like About Newt Gingrich Is That He Tells It Like It Is.” During the November 15 broadcast of Fox News' Fox & Friends, co-host Gretchen Carlson said that the “thing people like about Newt Gingrich is that he tells it like it is even though he's been a career politician. I mean how many times do we talk on this show about how politicians don't tell it like it is when they've served for so many years because they want to continually be re-elected. ” [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 11/15/11, via Media Matters]

Fox Nation: “Gingrich Matches Up Best VS Obama.” In a November 15 post, Fox Nation linked to a McClatchy-Marist poll showing Gingrich trailing Obama by two points under the headline “Gingrich Matches Up Best VS Obama. [Fox Nation, 11/15/11]

Hannity Quotes Rove To Claim “Newt Is Really, Really Smart.” During a November 7 interview on Fox News' Hannity with Gingrich, host Sean Hannity cited a conversation with Fox News contributor Karl Rove to claim Gingrich is “really, really smart.” From Hannity:

HANNITY: [Karl Rove] said -- I said, “What about Newt Gingrich's rise in the polls?” And he said, “The one thing that I keep hearing on the ground when I'm out speaking to people is people say, 'Newt is really, really smart.'” Do you think you've had to almost persuade people that maybe images, right or wrong about you when you were Speaker, that you needed to sort of push aside past perceptions? Are you a different person than you were when you were Speaker of the House? [Fox News, Hannity, 11/7/11, accessed via Nexis]

Malkin: “There's No Question That Newt Is Always The Smartest Guy In The Room.” During the November 10 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, Fox News contributor and conservative columnist Michelle Malkin criticized some of Gingrich's policies but claimed “there's no question that Newt is always the smartest guy in the room.” [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 11/10/11, via Media Matters]

Doocy: Gingrich Went “After The Money Honey, And She Wound Up Getting Newt-Ered.” Later in the same November 10 segment, co-host Steve Doocy said of Gingrich's exchange with CNBC GOP debate moderator Maria Bartiromo: “He did go after the Money Honey and she wound up getting Newt-ered.” [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 11/10/11, via Media Matters]

Morris: Gingrich Is “The Smartest Person In The Room.” On the November 14 edition of Fox News' Hannity, Fox News contributor Dick Morris attributed Gingrich's rise in the polls to being “the smartest person in the room,” and “the most qualified to be president.” From Hannity:

HANNITY: What do we make of -- now we in Newt Gingrich on. What do you make of Newt? He's now what, two polls show him tied for the lead and doing well in Iowa. And we know the momentum of anyone who does well in Iowa, going out of Iowa is going to be very powerful.

MORRIS: Look, how many, you and I talked about this in the greenroom several times.

HANNITY: And on air.

MORRIS: And Newt Gingrich was down at two or five or six percent of the vote. You can't go into debate after debate after debate without everybody eventually realizing, you are the smartest person in the room, you are the most experienced, you're most qualified to be president and you would be the toughest opponent for Obama in a debate. And people look at him and they see those characteristics. [Fox News, Hannity, 11/14/11 via Media Matters]

Even Before The Poll Surge, Fox Relentlessly Cheered Gingrich

Fox's Johnson: Gingrich “Is Probably One Of The Smartest People In The United States.” During the September 13 edition of Fox & Friends, Fox News legal analyst Peter Johnson Jr. said of Gingrich, "he's probably one of the smartest people in the United States." [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 9/13/11, via Media Matters]

Kilmeade: Gingrich Is “So Competent In All These Issues.” During the June 14 edition of Fox & Friends, co-host Kilmeade said: “I thought Newt Gingrich -- just seeing him -- he's so competent in all these issues. He's always leaning forward in terms of 'I'll tell you what I would do next as opposed to what just happened' with his history. I just wish he'd smile more. If he would smile and were a little bit happier, I think he would have hit a home run last night.” [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 6/14/11, via Media Matters]

Carlson: “There's No Doubt That Newt Gingrich Is A Brilliant Man... I Think We Would All Agree.” During the May 12 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, while weighing the positives of Gingrich's campaign, Carlson said: “There's no doubt that Newt Gingrich is a brilliant man. I mean, I think we would all agree.” [Fox News, Fox & Friends, 5/12/11, via Media Matters]

Kilmeade: Gingrich Will Run For President, And “Unless He Shoots Himself In The Foot, He'll Go The Distance.” During his November 3, 2010, Fox News Radio program, Brian Kilmeade said of Gingrich, “He's going to run for president. And it's a situation where unless he shoots himself in the foot, he'll go the distance.” [Fox News Radio, Kilmeade & Friends, 11/3/10, via Media Matters]

Fox Has Cheerleaded For Numerous GOP Candidates

Fox Promoted Sarah Palin's Bus Tour And Potential Candidacy. Fox figures repeatedly promoted Sarah Palin's bus tour and potential presidential campaign even while she was still employed as a Fox News contributor. Palin then sat for an interview on the bus tour with Fox News host Greta Van Susteren, who devoted the first half of her show to what Fox itself described as an effort to renew interest in Palin's “brand.” [Fox News, Special Report, 5/26/11]

For more of Fox's promotion of Sarah Palin's bus tour and potential campaign, SEE HERE.

Fox Promoted Herman Cain Campaign: “Yes We Cain.” Fox figures also promoted GOP candidate Herman Cain's campaign, both before and after he had officially announced as a candidate. Fox further defended Cain against recent allegations of sexual harassment. [Media Matters, 5/22/11, 11/10/11]

For more of Fox's promotion of Herman Cain's campaign, SEE HERE

Fox Promoted “Compelling” Rick Perry. Fox News figures promoted GOP candidate Rick Perry as “compelling” and having a “good story to tell about job creation.” Fox News figures further praised Perry's hair, looks, and ability to deliver speeches. [Media Matters, 8/19/11]

For more on Fox's promotion of Rick Perry's campaign, SEE HERE.

Fox Nation: The GOP's Cheer Squad. Fox Nation has a history of cheering GOP Presidential candidates Perry, Pawlenty, Cain, Romney as well as the tea party as a whole, Chris Christie, and Karl Rove. [Media Matters, 8/16/11, 9/26/11]

... And GOP Candidates Have Responded By “Speak[ing] Through Fox News”

Palin: "[S]peak to the American people. Speak through Fox News." Fox News contributor Sarah Palin appeared on the September 15, 2010, edition of The O'Reilly Factor and advised Christine O'Donnell, at the time the Republican U.S. Senate candidate in Delaware, to “speak to the American people. Speak through Fox News and let the Independents who are tuning in to you, let them know what it is that she stands for, the principles behind her positions.” [Fox News, The O'Reilly Factor, 9/15/10]

GOP Republican Candidates “Sp[oke] Through Fox News” 269 Times Through September 2010. Potential GOP presidential candidates made at least 269 appearances on Fox through September 18, 2010. Comparatively, these candidates appeared six times on all the other major news channels combined. [Media Matters, 9/27/10]