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Fox Defends ‘Muslim Hater’ Michael Savage, Says He Is ‘Very Supportive’ Of ‘Muslims And Islam’

By Matt Corley  

"Fox Defends ‘Muslim Hater’ Michael Savage, Says He Is ‘Very Supportive’ Of ‘Muslims And Islam’"

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On Fox News this morning, host Megyn Kelly offered a full-throated defense of right-wing talker Michael Savage, who is suing the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) after it encouraged a boycott against him over a recent anti-Muslim tirade on his show. Amongst other things, Savage called the Quran a “book of hate.”

Kelly and her guests — attorney Trish Deangelis and defense attorney David Wohl — all spoke in support of Savage, who they said is being “targeted” “intentionally” and “maliciously” in “a brutal battle” with an “organization” that took him “out of context” and “sues just about anybody”:

Deangelis: They “said that he’s a Muslim hater. If you watch Michael Savage, you know that is absolutely, that couldn’t be further from the truth.”

Wohl: “They take a snippet of it, and they take it out of context unlawfully and they use it to interfere with Michael Savage’s prospective business, that is actionable.”

Kelly: “Should these advertisers want to be seen as caving to CAIR? An organization that is very controversial.”

Deangelis: “Putting misrepresentations in a letter. That’s exactly what they were doing, using fear to harm Michael Savage.”

At the close of the segment, Kelly took a moment to give “one quick final word” and attack CAIR, saying that “CAIR does sue just about anyone who says anything derogatory about it, refusing to acknowledge people’s right to their own opinions about CAIR.” Watch it:

[flv http://video.thinkprogress.org/2007/12/FoxDefendsSavage.320.240.flv]

It’s not surprising, however, that Fox News would rush to his defense. Just as they did with Rush Limbaugh’s “phony soldiers” comment, Fox almost always circles the wagons around conservative talkers who get into trouble with offensive comments:

- In August, when right-wing rocker Ted Nugent said he wanted Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) to “suck on my machine gun,” Fox’s Sean Hannity refused to “disavow” his “friend and frequent guest.” Other Fox hosts dismissed it as a “joke” from “a man who likes to speak his mind.”

- In September, after Bill O’Reilly made casually racist comments about a Harlem restaurant, Fox defended him, running chyrons on their shows saying: “CNN gets suckered by website” and “Distorting the truth: O’Reilly gets taken out of context.”

- In October, when Rush Limbaugh said troops who opposed the war are “phony soldiers,” phony battle and total mischaracterization of Rush Limbaugh’s comments” and another host saying “the transcript backs [Rush] up.”

Savage has a long record of bigoted attacks on Muslims and the Islamic faith. In April 2006, he even suggested that Americans should “kill 100 million” of “these psychotics in the Muslim world.”

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