National Public Radio media reporter David Folkenflik is a professional Fox News basher. He wrote a whole book on Murdoch's World. On Wednesday's Morning Edition, they brought him on to assess the "right-wing media" reaction to the FBI raid on Trump. He tweeted they were "blindly tethered to Trump once more."
The backlash is a political phenomenon that can't be ignored - as a part of politics. It also says a lot about where the Republican party and right-wing media are now: blindly tethered to Trump once more. https://t.co/l6xzdm3eI8— David Folkenflik (@davidfolkenflik) August 10, 2022
Morning anchor A Martinez brought him on alongside reporter Deirdre Walsh, who discussed Republican politician reaction. He asked Folkenflik:
MARTINEZ: David, what about the conservative airwaves? How is this being portrayed there?
FOLKENFLIK: I got to tell you, A, it's sort of swung in lockstep in full-throated defense of the former president, depicting him as a victim, depicting him as something of a martyr and also depicting him as the one person standing between an oppressive federal government and you. So, you know, if you look at Newsmax or PJ Media or The Blaze or Townhall conservative talk radio - one went on - a talk radio host went on Fox News and said that it looked like a preemptive coup. And you saw sort of the litany of Fox stars and figures presenting this in extremely dire, at times apocalyptic, terms. Let's take one of their up-and-coming stars, Jesse Watters. Here's what he had to say last night.
JESSE WATTERS: I've never seen the base more angry. I'm angry. I feel violated. The whole country feels violated. It's disgusting. They've declared war on us, and now it's game on.
FOLKENFLIK: Watters also said this clearly comes from the top, making an allusion to President Biden. Although Biden, of course, has said that he has learned about this from the press, and there's no reporting to show otherwise. But this is still a narrative, not just on Jesse Watters' show, but repeatedly throughout Fox in other places, that President Biden orchestrated this to go after his political foe, former President Donald Trump.
It's amazing how credulous liberal journalists can be in assuming the Attorney General told no one in the White House he was going to approve a raid on Trump. Folkenflik would never assume Rupert Murdoch didn't know what was going on in his companies. As for apocalyptic terms, Folkenflik should look at NPR promoting Republicans as a "proto-authoritarian cult."
Folkenflik then smeared that right-wing media as fact-averse:
MARTINEZ: David, why is this the message then when we know that the FBI just can't get a warrant without going through certain steps and getting a judge to sign off?
FOLKENFLIK: Well, if you're looking at Fox News, which is the most important player in all this, you know, they will acknowledge this, particularly in their news as opposed to opinion shows. But facts are often sloughed off as inconvenient, if they're acknowledged at all. This story plays into Trump's narrative, stemming back from his 2015 start of his presidential campaign and the idea of the Deep State - this effort to discredit institutions and professionals and the so-called elites in government, outside of government, in the media -- particularly those opposing Trump -- and, in this case, in law enforcement.
Reality seeped in when morning anchor A Martinez suggested "Fox and other media on the right have really stood by Trump through thick and thin." Folkenflik said there have been "signs of cracks in that relationship" and Fox "starting to distance itself from Trump," but "what's happened the last 36 hours, however, has snapped Fox back to Trump's side. And it's not only leading the pack, but it's trying to catch up to it, knowing that its viewers are already there."