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White House to Fox News: Steer Clear of Schiavo

Reported by Melanie - March 27, 2005

At 2:00 p.m. ET today (March 27, 2005), Larry Klayman, the president of Judicial Watch, held a press conference outside the Florida hospice caring for Terri Schiavo. Klayman implored Florida Gov. Jeb Bush to save Schiavo, and he begged Florida senator Mel Martinez to speak to Gov. Bush and convince him to step in and rescue her. CNN carried the press conference, live, for ten minutes.

Fox News couldn't get enough of the Schiavo case or the ignore-the-law crowd last week, when it aired near wall-to-wall coverage. I think Mel Martinez was interviewed almost every day on one show or another and Fox routinely aired live coverage of save-Terri speeches made outside the hospice.

Interestingly, this afternoon as Klayman made his plea, Fox News was instead covering Iraq, and an Easter morning trip George Bush, his wife, two daughters, and parents made to Ft. Hood to visit troops there. Fox also interviewed Tom Feeney (R-FL). Feeney said Gov. Bush did everything he could to help Schiavo. During a 2:30 p.m. ET "news break," the Schiavo case wasn't even mentioned. The topics were the war in Iraq, Bush's visit to Ft. Hood, and Easter services in Iraq.

With Bush's poll numbers falling through the floor, it looks like Fox got the morning White House-inspired memo: Steer clear of the Terri Schiavo matter. If you do talk about it, make sure the Bush brothers look good!

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