Fox News Criticized for Airing Controversial Obama Video

9:40 PM PST 05/30/2012 by Paul Bond

“The package that aired on Fox & Friends was created by an associate producer and was not authorized at the senior executive level of the network," executive vp programming Bill Shine said.

Fox News Channel is under fire for a video it aired Wednesday morning that bloggers are likening to a Republican TV commercial. A top executive has acknowledged the segment is problematic and insiders say the associate producer responsible for it, Chris White, likely has already decided to leave Fox for CNN.

“He’s CNN’s problem now,” an FNC staffer said Wednesday. CNN, though, did not respond to requests for confirmation.

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White’s video aired on Fox & Friends, and liberal-leaning watchdog groups seized upon it as evidence of bias at the network. Media Matters For America addressed it under the headline: “Fox News rolls out its marketing push for Romney’s general-election campaign.”

Insiders say White, who is credited on air for creating the four-minute video, had already been offered a job at CNN, so the segment didn’t cost him his position, even though it clearly angered top brass, including executive vp programming Bill Shine.

“The package that aired on Fox & Friends was created by an associate producer and was not authorized at the senior executive level of the network. This has been addressed with the show’s producers,” Shine said.

The segment features hosts Gretchen Carlson, Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade discussing whether President Barack Obama has delivered on his promise of “hope” and “change.” The video, embedded below, intertwines portions of Obama’s optimistic speeches with menacing statistics about the national debt, joblessness, food stamps and inflation.

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“Hats off to Chris White, one of the producers on our team. He’s been in a small editing room for the last couple of weeks, reliving the last four years,” Doocy says after the video ends.

The video, though, didn’t go over quite so well in many circles. Examples of the criticism Fox News was receiving Wednesday included:

Mediaite said that “the sharply edited and highly produced piece may cross a line, however, from journalism to advocacy.”

The Huffington Post called the video “remarkable” and noted that the it had been removed from the network’s website.

Salon.com said that “Fox News threw out its usual playbook of merely skirting the line of journalistic ethics and went all-in with a four-minute video that can only be described as a political attack ad.”

Email: paul.bond@thr.com

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