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Clinton Library Dedication: On Fox, Get the Fangs Out

Reported by Melanie - November 18, 2004 -

Today's (November 18, 2004) Dayside w/Linda Vester program consisted primarily of coverage of the opening of the Clinton library in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Fox aired speeches by former Presidents Carter and Bush, and the current President Bush, before the singer Bono gave a musical interlude which in turn gave Fox time for a Clinton-bashing interlude with guest Larry Sabato.

Vester and Sabato took the opportunity to remind viewers of as many of the negative aspects of Clinton's presidency as time permitted before the speeches resumed. Sabato called Clinton's presidency the "Seinfeld presidency" because "there wasn't much there;" he said that impeachment "looms very large" in history; that presidential libraries are really about selling the presidency and the Clinton library is a good example of that; that the section in the Clinton library on impeachment is the same size as the section on the Clinton pets, and that all presidents have difficulties. Vester and Sabato surmised that we might now have access to Clinton's papers so we can find out why his administration didn't catch Osama bin Laden; that there will be "all kinds of hidden gems" in the papers; that we might find the missing papers from Hillary Rodham Clinton's old law firm and finally, Sabato concluded that Clinton didn't go after Osama bin Laden because he was too preoccupied with scandals.

COMMENT: My problem with this kind of disrespectful, endless bashing, especially when it takes place literally during the live dedication ceremony itself (can't the bashing stop for an hour?), is that you would never, ever hear this kind of talk out of Fox during the dedication of a Republican president's library. If you want to bash both sides, fine. If you only bash one side, don't call yourself "fair and balanced."