Fox News host Megyn Kelly is profiled in the latest edition of the women’s magazine Elle. Ben Dickinson, usually the magazine’s “books editor,” started with flattery: “With her naughtily mussed blond bob framing her flashing dark blue eyes and perpetually glossed lips, Kelly is an almost self-parodically perfect apotheosis of her species, the FOX fox.”
She's "on top, and there to stay." But by the story’s end, Dickinson turned his article into a little lecture on Fox News viewers are in despair because America is changing for the better/leftier:
Soon, the crisis around the rollout of Obamacare inflamed Kelly’s moral indignation and became her abiding preoccupation. And no one does outrage like Kelly: There’s the icy stare. The trembling bob. The slow shake of the head. And the rhetorical eruptions—Millions of insurance policies canceled! The president lied! The promise has fallen apart! Don’t bother arguing that Obamacare was essentially invented by the right-wing Heritage Foundation and implemented in Massachusetts by none other than Mitt Romney. Never mind that liberals basically wanted Medicare for all. You’re putting too fine a point on it—Obamacare is killing the liberal dream, full stop!
So—no, Virginia, Megyn Kelly is no liberal Trojan horse at FOX News Channel. Witness her misadventure into the Christmas Wars in mid-December, when she opined that Santa Claus “just is white” and added the historically misinformed claim that “Jesus was a white man too.” And notice that earlier Kelly attributed animosity to the old-school Republicans, not the Tea Partyers—about whom she says, “There’s something admirable about standing on principle in a town in which principle is sold out in a New York minute! I think the problem for them is that there has been such an organized attempt to marginalize them. They don’t want to be painted with a racist or an extremist brush—they just want to be heard.”
One might object that you could say the same about the majority of American voters, who cast over a million more ballots for Democratic candidates than for Republicans but got a GOP-controlled House because of how its districts are carved up. But, at bottom, this is not a conversation about procedural democracy—it’s about communal allegiance and identity. And today, as Tea Partyers speak in ever more apocalyptic terms about the end of Freedom and the coming of godless socialism, their rhetoric is increasingly recognizable as a cry of despair: America really is changing, rapidly and irrevocably. And even liberals might conclude that although Megyn Kelly is clearly not on their side and is just beginning an epic, probably history-making run in broadcast news, it’s going to be one helluva show.
In one of his complimients, Dickinson strangely compared Kelly to....George Clooney?
The earthy timbre of her voice—she’s almost incapable of sounding shrill, a great asset in her line of work—and her direct, unpretentious manner of speaking summon to mind, of all people, George Clooney: In both of them you can hear the great, small-d democratic cadence of heartland America talking.
That's a nice compliment. But who listens to George Clooney talk politics and hears "heartland America"? From his lake house in Italy? Dickinson also let Brit Hume lay on the praise thick:
FOX News Channel’s Brit Hume couldn’t understand why ABC’s network-news organization “wouldn’t have snapped her up already—but we were glad they hadn’t. She’s got this incredibly winning, girlish smile she breaks out in all the time,” he says (after twice referring to her as “impossibly good-looking” in a span of five minutes). “And she can be just as tough as nails and bear down on people. I think she’s got the strongest set of qualities of any woman in the news part of the medium in history.”