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Martha MacCallum "Hears" Those Who Oppose In-State Tuition For "Illegals"

Reported by Priscilla - October 10, 2011 -

In the spirit of the 19th century "Know Nothings," today's GOP is full of fear and loathing of immigration. As their mouthpiece, Fox News aids and abets their nativist positions, especially in its coverage of those who are undocumented - or, as Fox puts it, "illegals." Now that a number of states have approved in-state tuition for young people who are "illegal," Fox "News" is there to support those who oppose this measure which aims to help young people who want to pursue their education. Martha MacCallum, despite her position as an official "news" anchor, is known for advocating GOP positions. So it wasn't surprising to see her solidarity with those who oppose in-state tuition for those nasty "illegals."

On September 28th, MacCallum began with the video of Rick Perry's defense of Texas in-state tuition for undocumented students. She reported that this policy has been approved in 12 other states and recently in RI where the change was adopted by the Board of Governors for higher ed. The Fox propaganda message was immediately framed when she described the issue, in the same terms as those who oppose it, as "sidestepping the legislature." She played a short clip of an undocumented student who supported the measure, followed by a longer clip of an opponent. "Fair & balanced" Martha continued to frame the issue in terms used by the opponents: "The people of RI did not get to voice their opinion on this" and claimed that RI polls show that a majority of people are against it. As her guest, Angela Kelly from the Center for American Progress spoke about the reasons for and benefits of this policy, the chyron used the standard Fox divisive word for those who are undocumented: "RI Approves In State Tuition for Kids of Illegals."

MacCallum continued to use the language of the opponents: "There's one group of people that you're forgetting in this equation." As she couldn't get her RI anti-"illegal" person on the line, she continued: The one group that's being forgotten here are like the man who we just saw in the soundbite. He worked so hard to get his family here and he wants his children to have the advantage of having come here legally." Her voice rose as she articulated another opposition talking point: "what about kids who live out of state..." (Uh, Martha, they don't meet the resident qualifications of the policy which mandates that they be graduates of a RI high school and have lived in RI for three years) MacCallum didn't mention that these students are also required to apply for citizenship. She continued to advocate for the opposition when she asked, heatedly, why out of staters should pay more than these "illegal immigrant children." When she finished she had her requisite boy-am-I-so-pissed look.

When she finally got the other guy on the line she provided the Fox editorial message: "The issue is everybody is sympathetic to these children who have been raised here in the United States despite the fact that their parents are here illegally but the sympathy issue is part of the story, the other part of the story is that they're here illegally, Terry, and tell me why you think this is such an important part of the component in this." Gorman, head of a RI right wing anti-immigration group said that "it's against the law." Gorman claimed that "people" have told him about "abuses of illegal aliens." (LOL - right, they're abused and exploited by those who employ them but that's not what wall of genius Gorman meant!) Gorman, not a lawyer, asserted that he found "laws that prevent every single one of them." Ignoring the requirement that the students apply for citizenship, Gorman said that they will still be "illegal aliens" when they graduate. Demonstrating his genius even more, he asserted that they should be denied the right to live on campus because if they commuted they wouldn't be allowed to drive because, as "illegals," they can't get licenses. (What about walking, buses, and cars driven by legals who can transport them?). MacCallum gave her validation: "I hear you Terry and a lot of people across the country." As she spoke, film footage of "illegals" jumping the border fence, was shown. Reality is that many of these young people have been here since they were babies. In giving Kelly the last word, Martha summed up the opposition: "It's against the law, the people are here illegally, and you know the people who got there the right way have a real problem with that."

Comment: The Fox message was loud and clear. As Martha whined, these people here are illegals - nothing more matters. Despite her role as an official "news" anchor, her support for those who oppose in-state tuition for these young people couldn't be any clearer. Gotta love that "fair & balanced" Fox "News."

Note - Gorman is so credible that he got a "Politifact" rating of "pants on fire" regarding his claim about how much illegal immigration costs RI.

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