Neil Cavuto tried to wriggle out of trouble after taking some heat for asking presidential candidate John Kasich what he’d do if stock market losses escalate “like it did back when Barack Obama first assumed the presidency.”
Cavuto’s actual question was:
“Governor Kasich, we’re not even two weeks into this stock trading year, think about it: investors have already lost $1.6 trillion in market value. That makes it the worst start to a new year ever. Many worried that things could get even worse, and that banks and financial stocks are particularly vulnerable. Now if this escalates like it did back when Barack Obama first assumed the presidency, what actions would you take if the same thing happens all over again just as, in this example, you are taking over the presidency?”
Media Matters pointed out:
Economists and journalists slammed Cavuto’s biased line of questioning, writing that “A doctorate in recent history isn’t necessary” to see Cavuto’s bias, and that Cavuto’s selective memory is “part of a larger pattern” of misinformation.
As The Washington Post’s Erik Wemple wrote, “In a debate question before a national audience, the proper way to contextualize President Obama and the financial crisis is to say that he inherited it.”
But rather than just admit he worded his question poorly, Cavuto attacked his critics:
CAVUTO: When I hear a story and a myth and a series of lies that’s repeated and repeated and tweeted and then retweeted, it begins to get my attention, especially something that hit the liberal blogosphere that I apparently, in a question, implied that Barack Obama was to blame for the financial crisis that actually happened before he became even president. I wonder what triggered that, and they point to this question that I asked.
After playing a clip of his debate question, Cavuto continued.
CAVUTO: Did I blame the president for that crisis? No. What I was saying was that, starting this year out with a huge market selloff, much as we were looking at the middle of a meltdown, in the last year of the Bush administration, that Senator Barack Obama, once elected president, would be inheriting, taking over, when he was inaugurated president.
My point was then, and to stress now, that he would be taking over as president in the middle of what would be a market meltdown not of his doing. I wasn’t blaming it on him.
Then Cavuto suggested that his critics were just acting out of liberal bias.
CAVUTO: So for people to reconstruct like, well, Krugman in the New York Times, Media Matters, some of these leftwing sites, that I somehow manufactured a crisis and lumped it on the president, the same president, I had reminded my Republican guests, had seen the unemployment rate cut in half under his stewardship and the millions of jobs he created. I wasn’t framing any economic argument to benefit either Republicans or Democrats.
He concluded by saying, “If anyone can divine any political motives to that question, you’re an a**.”
Watch it below, from the January 14 Your World.
But from spending 10+ years of reading about Cavuto and watching many segments of him, myself, I will repeat what I said before. I think he’s OK. I like him, even. He does often try to be fair. Does that make him a hero? Not at all. But the guy is suffering and he’s bearing his burden(s) with a lot more grace than I think I would. I see no reason not to have personal sympathy and respect at the same time that we criticize his work.
The guy can’t read a teleprompter so he has to memorize his questions. Now, maybe he deliberately tried to make it look like the financial crisis happened under Obama or maybe he meant what he said he meant and, if so, he said it poorly or even made a Freudian slip. And let’s say he’s really just a big d*** and I’m all wrong (though I know someone who knows his wife and I don’t think I am). My grandmother used to tell me, “Err on the side of kindness.” I’d much rather do that than err on the side of hard-heartedness.
I guess it’s true that a snake will always be a snake.
Given Faux’s track record of identifying republicans caught in scandal as democrats and a whole laundry list of other disinformation, this is another nugget on a big old pile of shit.