On Friday's Fox & Friends, co-host Steve Doocy picked up an item reported on by NewsBusters on Wednesday about MSNBC cropping President George W. Bush's face out of the latest Newsweek cover. As Doocy explained: "...on MSNBC...They have cropped all of President Bush's face out. So why does the mainstream media have so much trouble giving him credit?"
Doocy discussed the issue with a political panel that included Democratic strategist Doug Schoen, who acknowledged: "What MSNBC did makes no sense." He later added: "...that makes no sense at all. Because to do that is just plain mean-spirited and wrong." Another panelist, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Karen Hunter, later admitted: "perhaps cropping him out completely may not be too fair."
On Wednesday's Morning Joe program on MSNBC a picture of the Newsweek cover was shown, but with only President Bush's arm visible, his face had been completely cut out of the original image.
Here is a portion of the Fox & Friends exchange:
STEVE DOOCY: Take a look at the latest cover of Newsweek magazine. The kind you actually get through the mail or buy at a news stand. At first glance, it seems President Bush is getting credit for his efforts in Iraq. Yet only half of the President's face is shown. They have cut him right down the middle. Now, take a look at how the cover was shown on MSNBC. They have cropped all of President Bush's face out. So why does the mainstream media have so much trouble giving him credit? We're back with our political panel, Karen Hunter, Carl Delfeld, and Doug Schoen. Doug, what are they doing?
DOUG SCHOEN [FORMER BILL CLINTON ADVISOR]: Well, I think Newsweek's doing something reasonable. I think the job is partially done. We've had much more success than most have conceived and showing part of the President's face is logical. What MSNBC did makes no sense.
DOOCY: What do you mean it's logical? To only – to cut the President in half.
SCHOEN: To cut 2/3 of the President-
KAREN HUNTER: Well, they got his good side.
DOOCY: They got his good side. [Laughter]
SCHOEN: -leave his good side on and suggest that he made progress, I think, is fair and reasonable. Yeah.
DOOCY: Okay. Well what is MSNBC doing then, by cropping?
SCHOEN: I said that makes no sense at all. Because to do that is just plain mean-spirited and wrong.
KAREN HUNTER: At the end of the day, you know, we have to be fair. And to be fair, I think the cover of Newsweek is fair and perhaps cropping him out completely may not be too fair.