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Bending the Truth: Part of the Job Description at FOX

Reported by Marie Therese - May 10, 2005

News Hounds predicted when we heard that Michael Chertoff was approved as Director of Homeland Security that the Bush administration - hiding behind its shills and surrogates - would launch a concerted, all-out campaign against Hillary Clinton. Chertoff worked for two years as Special Counsel for the Whitewater Committee and has a history of hostility towards the Clintons. It would seem that the battle has been joined and we are in for a long, bumpy ride!

In January 2005 David Rosen, Hillary's campaign manager in 2000 was indicted for violating FEC rules. Shortly after the indictment was filed, Carol Devine-Miller wrote an article for GOPUSA.com a Scaife-funded website, the title of which was "Is Hillary the Real Target of the Feds?":

"But in her zeal to win the Oval Office in 2008, I was originally confident that she would successfully create the impression of repositioning herself as a political centrist. Well, I'm not so sure about that, anymore. Mind you, I never envisioned a true reinvention of Hillary Clinton borne of self-actualization. That's not going to happen. Hillary's "conversion" to a more mainstream stance would have been a crock, put out there solely for the purpose of winning the presidency."

In the transcript below Bill O'Reilly repeats virtually the same talking points that Ms. Devine-Miller used, i.e., that Hillary's "moderate" image is a sham and she's really a raving lunatic lefty in centrist clothing.

Then we have the anonymous "Hillary hater" who's started his/her own "Let's get Hillary" web page claiming:

"We need you to help us finance a massive media blitz and public education campaign...And we need your help now, before Hillary and Bill Clinton are able to pull the wool over America's eyes once again. Join STOP HER NOW today!" [Of course, this cowardly weasel is hiding under his/her desk, quaking in fear, afraid of the sunlight of recognition. I wonder why?]

Naturally, if one reads the actual indictment against Rosen, "Senator A" (Hillary Clinton) is not implicated in the fraud at all. But when have facts ever stopped a right-wing smear merchant?

In the transcripts below, O'Reilly whines that the elite media ignored this story. However, when the indictment was filed last January, FOX News didn't cover it either! They did, however, cover the initial story which involved Peter J. Paul. Mr. Paul has filed a lawsuit against the Clintons and is being represented by a right-wing legal group called the United States Justice Foundation (USJF) [not to be confused with the progressive U.S. Justice Fund].

While the USJF acknowledges that "the U.S. Justice Department has stated that Senator Clinton will not be a target or a witness in their criminal prosecutions of her Senate campaign," another anti-Hillary website, HillCap, claims that Peter Paul has evidence that will directly link Mrs. Clinton to the fraud:

"USJF believes that the American people are entitled to know the truth behind Paul's allegations of President and Mrs. Clinton's roles in orchestrating the fraud that helped achieve her election to the U.S. Senate. The best way to arrive at that truth is through the prosecution of the civil case now pending in California Superior Court in Los Angeles.

Since the California Supreme Court ruled in November 2004 that the case of Paul v Clintons, et al should proceed to trial, USJF has begun an urgent appeal for contributions to raise the considerable resources necessary to mount the first-ever prosecution of a former President and current Senator for fraud. The Clintons have directed one of the largest law firms in the nation to mount a multi-million dollar defense against Paul's claims."

As if this weren't enough, on May 9th Judicial Watch filed a request with the Senate Ethics Committee asking it to "investigate and discipline Hillary Clinton for Campaign Finance Fraud."

Never one to be caught napping, yesterday FOX News Channel joined the fray, making sure its harassing minions molded a molehill into a mountain ...

TALKING POINTS MEMO, Monday, May 9, 2005

O'REILLY: Hillary Clinton and the left-wing press. That is the subject of this evening's Talking Points memo. There's no question that Senator Clinton has a major ally in the so-called elite media which is in step with her big-government philosophy and her social liberalism.

But today the New York Times announced that it is changing its format and it will try to become less ideological on its news pages. Not good news for Mrs. Clinton. The paper said it will respond more aggressively to its critics. Not good news for me. For the New York Times to acknowledge - to acknowledge - there could be a problem is a good first step. We need honest media. We need no-spin information in this very complicated world. Talking Points has no problem with any paper having a liberal or conservative editorial page. That's valid, but slanting the news to match the editorials is dishonest and we'll continue to call people on it.

Now the collapse of newspapers like the Los Angeles Times is a good example of regular folks just saying: Enough! Most Americans don't want to hear their country's a bad place every two minutes. Most Americans don't sympathize with terrorists. Most Americans feel that Abu Ghraib story was overplayed and they don't want a homosexual agenda taught in the public schools. Most Americans don't think don't think religion is bad. They don't like the ACLU and they want illegal immigration brought under control.

So, it's obvious that most Americans aren't in sync with the big liberal media which you'll remember went big for John Kerry. Enter Hillary Clinton who wants to sit in the White House. In her column in Newsweek liberal Anna Quinlan gushes over her, describing her as a "moderate." Well, in Quinlan's world (louder) she probably is a moderate! (normal tone) But for the rest of us Senator Clinton's support for partial birth abortion, votes against parental notification in the Violence Against the Unborn Acts put her squarely on the left. That's what I mean about the the left-wing media! To them social issues like unfettered abortion, pro-gay instruction in public schools and the banishment of public spirituality aren't radical. They're taken for granted. And if you don't see it that way, you're the extremist, not them. Now to be fair, Senator Clinton should be allowed to redefine herself. But, what she puts out there should be scrutinized.

Summing up, we're happy the New York Times is trying to become more "fair and balanced," if you will. But talk is cheap we'll see what really goes down.

TRANSCRIPT OF INTERVIEW WITH JUDGE ANDREW NAPOLITANO AND JOSH GERSTEIN

O'REILLY: Now for the top story tonight. A situation that's been kind of quiet - kept quiet - by the elite media. Did you know that Ted Kennedy's brother-in-law wore a wire in a federal investigation of a Hillary Clinton fund-raiser? Did you know that? With us now in the studio Judge Andrew Napolitano, author of the book "Constitutional Chaos" and from Las Vegas Josh Gerstein, national reporter for the New York Sun, which has been following the story. One of the few papers that's following the story, Mr. Gerstein. First of all, why do you think that is?

GERSTEIN: Well, I think there's a lot of factors at work. It could be theliberal media angle that you're talking about but it's also a case that's happening - it's being tried - out in Los Angeles and there are beltway blinders, you know, people in Washington don't want to hear that there's anything interesting happening anywhere else in the world. I think that's part of it. And also so many people are eager to see Mrs. Clinton. I'm talking not just about Democrats, not just about the press corps, but so many Republicans want to see her run for President that no one wants to upset that apple cart.

O'REILLY: See, I don't - you know, I disagree with you. I think it's because they don't want to make the linkage between the Kennedy family and the Clinton family and that is a huge story. Just today I discovered the intricacies of it and we're gonna get into it. Now. Tomorrow [5/10/05] the trial starts. David Rosen, one of the top fundraisers for Hillary Clinton when she was running for the Senate, may go to jail for what?

GERSTEIN: Well, the allegation is that he oversaw a fundraiser in August of 2000, right around the Democratic Convention. It was a star-studded gala and it went way over budget. They wanted to spend a few hundred thousand dollars. Instead, it ended up costing at least a million, probably closer to two million dollars and, after that, I think the allegation is that Mr. Rosen was worried he was going to get in trouble if he reported the actual costs of this event and the government says he hid some of the costs and caused false reports to be filed with the Federal Election Commission. That's the crux of the case.

O'REILLY (overtalks last 6 words): Alright. Because if he said it cost two million dollars, then it would have come off of Hillary's Clinton's money and she couldn't have spent that running for the Senate. OK. These are all allegations. Now, the big story. (excited) Judge Napolitano, you got Kennedy's wife ...

NAPOLITANO (big smile): Right ...

O'REILLY: ... Victoria Reggie's brother ....

NAPOLITANO: Right ...

O'REILLY: ....who's already pled guilty to bank fraud felonies, wearin' a wire to entrap or to get evidence, against this David Rosen. It's huge!!

NAPOLITANO: He's charged with defrauding a bank by over six million dollars. So he says: Hey, I'll cut a deal with you. I can get close to the fundraisers around Hillary ...

O'REILLY: Yeah, because I'm a Kennedy. I'm in the Kennedy family.

NAPOLITANO: Exactly. Exactly. Wire me and I'll have conversations. Say, I might even have a conversation with Bill and Hillary while I'm wearing the wire. The wire is a very, very small device hidden on the body. You could be wearing one now and I wouldn't know it, even though I'm talking with you within a couple of feet of you - broadcasts to FBI agents who are not too far away, recording everything that's happening. Hundreds and hundreds of hours of conversation about the Clintons and about this fraud and maybe whether or not Hillary knew about ...

O'REILLY: Alleged - alleged fraud.

NAPOLITANO: Alleged fraud. OK.

O'REILLY: OK. Alright. So he's sittin' at dinner at Morton's in Chicago...

Napolitano: Right ..

O'REILLY: This is where this took place, ladies and gentlemen. There's a Morton's Restaurant in Chicago. So, Reggie, alright, the brother again of Ted Kennedy's wife is sittin' there with this Rosen guy, who's Hillary's top fundraising lieutenant, and they're dishin'. They're talking about not only this but they're talkin' about who's usin' drugs, who's sleepin' with whom, and the FBI is recording all of this, alright. Now, do you need a judge's order to do that kind of a tap?

NAPOLITANO: You know, you don't need a judge's order.

O'REILLY: The FBI can just set that sting up?

NAPOLITANO: Correct.

O'REILLY: And it's also admissible - all of it's admissible in court?

NAPOLITANO: Absolutely. Because what Rosen said on the tape is considered almost like a confession. It's an admission against interest. And Reggie - that's Teddy's brother-in-law - the guy wearing the wire knows he's not going to get his time in jail reduced unless he can (excited) really get this guy to say some stuff! So he's encouraging him ...

O'REILLY: Yeah. He's already ...

NAPOLITANO: He's encouraging him to talk about this so-called fraud.

O'REILLY: The deal he made was no longer than five years in prison. I think he probably will get that because they do have the wire.

NAPOLITANO: He's exposed to thirty.

O'REILLY: Now, Mr. Gerstein, this is the story becomes [sic] what's on the tape. Alright. And not only in it's fund-raising sense, but, again, they were dishin' about drug use and sex within the Clinton campaign. (feigning innocence) Will all this be introduced into evidence, do you think?

GERSTEIN: I don't think all of it will come into evidence. I think they're probably gonna stick straight down the line and stay with the stuff that talks about the money issues. A lot of that other material is salacious and the jury might actually get upset if they heard a lot of these sort of gossipy things that were being said on it. So I expect ...

O'REILLY (interrupts): Some of it's been leaked to the press already. Do you expect the whole tape will be leaked? You know how they are these days. They put it on the internet. They just throw it out there.

GERSTEIN: I think it will eventually come out. I don't know exactly when but I think you'll see the transcript and you'll probably hear the audio of it sooner or later.

O'REILLY: Yeah. And remember. This is all gossip, so it's not really fair to anybody involved. Alright, Judge, one final question to you. It can't be good feelings between the Kennedy and Clinton families over this?

NAPOLITANO: Oh,absolutely not. And certainly Reggie knew who he was going after and ...

O'REILLY: Yeah!

NAPOLITANO: And the feds knew who he was. I would look for some salacious stuff to come out. Political damage for Hillary, but not legal damage.

O'REILLY: Yeah. Alright. We will follow this trial and, gentlemen, we appreciate it very much.

COMMENT

A little more information on Josh Gerstein. In November 2004 he wrote the following blurb on the California Conservatives for Truth website, thus linking him to research on the funding for the Clinton Presidential Library. On the day the library opened, Dick Morris implied that the right wing machine will be spending many hours trying to find suspicious funding streams as part of the campaign to destroy any chance of a Hillary Clinton run for the White House in 2008. Additionally, is there any connection between Josh Gerstein of the New York Sun and Dan Gerstein, the DINO who works for Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-CT)?

LITTLE ROCK, ARK. - President Clinton's new $165 million library here was funded in part by gifts of $1 million or more each from the Saudi royal family and three Saudi businessmen.

The governments of Dubai, Kuwait, and Qatar and the deputy prime minister of Lebanon all also appear to have donated $1 million or more for the archive and museum that opened last week.

Democrats spent much of the presidential campaign this year accusing President Bush of improperly close ties to Saudi Arabia. The case was made in Michael Moore's film "Fahrenheit 9/11," in a bestselling book by Craig Unger titled "House of Bush, House of Saud," and by the Democratic presidential candidate, Senator Kerry. "This administration delayed pressuring the Saudis," Mr. Kerry said on October 20. "I will insist that the Saudis crack down on charities that funnel funds to terrorists... and on anti-American and anti-Israel hate speech." The Media Fund, a Democratic group whose president is a former Clinton White House aide, Harold Ickes, spent millions airing television commercials in swing states with scripts such as, "The Saudi royal family...wealthy...powerful...corrupt. And close Bush family friends."

Perhaps as a result, the Saudi donations to the Clinton library are raising some eyebrows. Mr. Unger said he suspects that the Saudi support may have something to do with a possible presidential bid by Senator Clinton in 2008.

"They want to keep their options open no matter who's in power and whether that's four years from now or whatever," the author said. "Just a few million is nothing to them to keep their options open." [Monday 11/22/2004, 7:56 AM]

CORRECTION, May 16, 2005, 5:40 PM EDT:

Josh Gerstein has written to ask that we clarify an error in this post and to answer a question. Here is the full text of his gmail to us:

Dear Editors:

I saw an item today on your website which at one point mentions my
appearance on O'Reilly's show on Fox last week.

****

First, I wanted to answer your question by letting you know that I am not related nor do I have any connection with Dan Gerstein, the former staffer for Sen. Lieberman.

Second, I have never written anything for California Conservatives for
Truth. In fact, I've never even heard of it. The "blurb" you cite is taken from a story I wrote for The New York Sun. If it appears on a California Conservatives etc. website, it does so without any permission or authorization from me or my employer.

Please don't hesitate to be in touch with any other questions.

Thanks.

Josh Gerstein
National Reporter
New York Sun

My response to his gmail follows:

Dear Mr. Gerstein:

Thank you for clarifying that you and Dan Gerstein are not related.

As for the California Conservatives for Truth, their site gives the
distinct impression that you are on staff there.

I think if you check it out at

http://cc4truth.com/index.php/weblog/by_josh_gerstein_staff/

you will see in big red letters that it says:

BY JOSH GERSTEIN - STAFF

Also, in the URL itself it says the same thing, i.e., josh _gerstein_staff.

The obvious implication here is that you are on their staff.

Your article is posted underneath this bold face heading.

I based the information in my post on the assumption that separate
words in large red block letters at the head of the piece are saying
something pertinent about the status of the person whose article
follows. Clearly, the California Conservatives are walking a thin
line here. I believe they are misleading their readers, whether
deliberately or otherwise.

I will post your e-mail on the post.

In addition you might want to contact the California Conservatives and
request that they alter their website to reflect the truth more
clearly.

Sincerely,

Marie Therese

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