This morning on CNN’s Reliable Sources, White House communications director Anita Dunn defended her recent comment to Time magazine that Fox News is “opinion journalism masquerading as news.” Noting the inordinate amount of attention Fox devotes to stirring fake controversies like Bill Ayers and ACORN, Dunn explained:
The reality of it is that Fox News often operates as either the research arm or the communications arm of the Republican Party. And it’s not ideological. I mean, obviously there are many commentators who are conservative, liberal, centrist, and everybody understands that. What I think is fair to say about Fox is — and certainly the way we view it — is that it really is more of a wing of the Republican Party. [...]
They’re widely viewed as, you know, a part of the Republican Party — take their talking points, put them on the air, take their opposition research, put them on the air, and that’s fine. But let’s not pretend they’re a news network they way CNN is.
Last month, President Obama appeared on five Sunday morning talk shows, including Univision’s Al Punto. He rejected Fox, however. Dunn revealed this morning that Obama did not appear on Fox because of its reflexive, partisan opposition to Obama. Obama will go on Fox in the future, Dunn said, but when he goes on, “he’s going on to debate the opposition.”