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October 29, 2009

About That Shepard Smith Story

Much has been made about Shepard Smith making an ass of himself with his on-air apology for a report he deemed insufficiently balanced. And I certainly agree that the context shows him to be an ass – and think that Fox ought to suspend or fire him for undeniably unprofessional conduct.

Fox News Channel anchor Shepard Smith apologized for a "lack of balance" following a political report where the Republican candidate for New Jersey governor was interviewed and the Democratic incumbent wasn't.

Fox correspondent Shannon Bream had wrapped up a live interview with GOP candidate Chris Christie on Smith's afternoon news show Tuesday when the anchor asked, "When will you be interviewing Jon Corzine?"

Bream replied that despite "multiple requests," Corzine hadn't made himself available for an interview.

"I didn't know that was about to happen," Smith then said. "My apologies for the lack of balance there. If I had control, it wouldn't have happened.

Now wait – Bream had done everything a professional reporter is expected to do in that situation. The problem was that one of the candidates couldn’t be bothered to even respond to requests for interviews. That doesn’t mean that you do not do an interview with the candidate who agrees to an interview – the balanced thing to do is to acknowledge that the opponent is dodging interview requests. The only unprofessional conduct I see here is on the part of Shepard Smith.

But I wonder if this might have something to do with the situation – and the failure of the Corzine campaign to respond to interview requests.

One of President Barack Obama’s key political advisers has become the central strategist in New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine’s bruising campaign for re-election, a race the White House desperately wants to win to avert the consequences for its own agenda of a Republican winning in a traditionally Democratic state.

The White House was so concerned about Corzine's chances during the summer that Corzine's aides feared the first-term governor was being pressured to step aside for a stronger candidate. Those fears turned out to be groundless, but were part of the reason Corzine hired Joel Benenson, who has helped impose discipline on a struggling campaign and crystallize Corzine’s aggressive attacks on the character of his Republican opponent, former U.S. Attorney Chris Christie.

Hmmmmmm….

Let’s see here.

Corzine hires an Obama insider to run his campaign.

Obama and his handlers declared war on Fox News, refused to appear on its programs, and otherwise attempted to delegitimize America’s biggest cable news channel.

The Obama-controlled Corzine ignored interview requests from Fox.

Am I alone here in thinking that these three things might just be connected?





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