Fox Guest: If You Read The New York Times, 'You Live In a World Where Obama Is Doing Great'

Barack Obama’s seemingly constant attacks on Fox News were a hot topic of conversation on the June 22 edition of The Kelly File. Megyn Kelly invited former Bush speechwriter Marc Thiessen and Democratic strategist Robert Zimmerman to the program to discuss why the president complains about the cable network so frequently. Thiessen agreed with Obama’s statement in an interview with Marc Maron that people who watch Fox News are getting a completely different set of facts than those who read The New York Times

The former Bush staffer claimed, “if you read The New York Times, you live in a world where Barack Obama is doing great, the battle against ISIS is going well, and the economy is recovering.” He added that – if you were living in The New York Times’s media bubble – “you wouldn’t know things like, for example, about Lois Lerner’s emails or the fact that Jonathan Gruber, the architect of ObamaCare, has said – mocked the stupidity of the American people.” 

Thiessen explained exactly why he thinks the president wants the American people to read The New York Times and other liberal outlets: 

But what you would know, for example, is that Marco Rubio got four traffic tickets. So this is the kind of news that President Obama wants us to be focused on. He doesn't want us to be focused on Lois Lerner and Jonathan Gruber, he wants us to be focused on Marco Rubio’s traffic tickets. That’s why he wants us to read The New York Times.   

Earlier in the segment, Kelly asserted that Obama “can’t seem to get over the fact that we [Fox News] are here.” The Fox News personality later wondered if the left “wants you to believe that Fox News just invents, you know, stories and that's what we exist to do.”

In attempting to explain the president’s strategy of going after Fox News so relentlessly, Thiessen remarked that it may have to do with Obama’s low approval ratings: 

But look, the problem is that Barack Obama – when you're failing, you need a scapegoat. And the American people say that Barack Obama is failing. Quinnipiac poll recently, 44% of Americans approve of his handling of the economy, 38% approve of his handling of immigration, 35% approve of his handling of foreign policy. 

Thiessen continued by hinting at Barack Obama’s opinion of Fox News viewers: “So, either the American people are right and Barack Obama is failing at all of his major tasks or they're misinformed. So Barack Obama chooses to believe they're misinformed. And the reason they’re misinformed is because they're watching too much Fox News.

The relevant portion of the transcript is below. 

Fox News
The Kelly File
June 22, 2015
9:46 p.m. Eastern

MEGYN KELLY: Joining me now, Marc Thiessen, who is a Fox News contributor and former chief speechwriter to President George W. Bush. Also Robert Zimmerman, who is a Democratic strategist and DNC committeeman. Both from New York. Good to see you guys. What is it, Marc Thiessen, because the president took a shot at Fox in May, and now once again he takes a shot at Fox here. I mean, he's taken many shots at us over his term, but he can't seem to get over the fact that we are here. 

MARC THIESSEN: I know. It is very frustrating –  

KELLY: Irritating. 

MARC THIESSEN: I’m sure to be Barack Obama and have Fox News on. But look, the last part of what he said is actually completely true. If you watch Fox News, you inhabit a completely different world with different facts than if you read The New York Times. If you watch – if you read The New York Times, you live in a world where Barack Obama is doing great, the battle against ISIS is going well, and the economy is recovering. You wouldn't know things like, for example, about Lois Lerner's e-mails or the fact that Jonathan Gruber, the architect of Obamacare, has said – mocked the stupidity of the American people. But what you would know, for example, is that Marco Rubio got four traffic tickets. So this is the kind of news that President Obama wants us to be focused on. He doesn't want us to be focused on Lois Lerner and Jonathan Gruber, he wants us to be focused on Marco Rubio’s traffic tickets. That’s why he wants us to read The New York Times.   

[...]

KELLY: But here is my question for you, Marc. What is it? Is this a strategy by the president? Or is it just we're a constant irritant to him? You know, you want to look at him and say, we're here, we're clear, get used to it. Something like he doesn't want to accept that there is a channel that will criticize him. I realize that many people feel it is too much, too much criticism. But really, has Fox News been proven wrong on every single subject? That's what the left wants you to believe, that Fox News just invents, you know, stories and that's what we exist to do. 

THIESSEN: Yeah, well, I was in the Bush administration and Fox News wasn't always friendly to us when we did things wrong. So I'm sure if there is a Republican president a few years from now, they're going to sometimes bemoan the coverage on Fox News as well. But look, the problem is that Barack Obama – when you're failing, you need a scapegoat. And the American people say that Barack Obama is failing. Quinnipiac poll recently, 44% of Americans approve of his handling of the economy, 38% approve of his handling of immigration, 35% approve of his handling of foreign policy. So, either the American people are right and Barack Obama is failing at all of his major tasks or they're misinformed. So Barack Obama chooses to believe they're misinformed. And the reason they’re misinformed is because they're watching too much Fox News. 

Media Bias Debate Kelly File Megyn Kelly Marc Thiessen Barack Obama

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