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Wallace Shows His Dishonest Colors in Clinton Interview

Reported by Judy - September 25, 2006 -

Chris Wallace showed himself to be unethical during his interview with President Clinton, which aired Sunday (September 24, 2006) on “Fox News Sunday.” Wallace blatantly tried to violate the terms of the agreement reached with Clinton before he agreed to his first-ever one-on-one interview with Fox News.

Wallace stated in his introduction to the interview that the ground rules called for a 15-minute interview, with half the time devoted to Clinton’s global initiatives and half the time to anything Wallace wanted to ask. Then he innocently told the viewers "that's not how it turned out."

Wallace did indeed ask a few questions about the global initiatives conference. Less than four minutes into the interview, however, Wallace shifted the questions to whether Clinton had done enough to try to capture Osama bin Laden. Four minutes is not half of 15 minutes by anybody’s watch.

When Clinton called Wallace on that fact, Wallace dodged by saying most of the questions he had written down had to do with the global initiatives.Then, he returned to the global initiatives conference at the end of the interview, but only after Clinton had shamed him into it by telling the audience what the ground rules were. Would Wallace even have admitted he had agreed to allow Clinton seven and a half minutes to talk about global initiatives had Clinton not brought it up in the interview? Would Wallace have returned to the topic had Clinton not called him on his dishonesty?

In the panel discussion following the interview, no one brought up the fact that Wallace had tried to violate the agreed-upon conditions, including the two liberals on the program – Mara Liaisson and Juan Williams, both of National Public Radio.

Nor did they bring up the question Clinton asked Wallace – and which Wallace refused to answer – had Wallace ever asked George Bush or anybody in his administration why they did not go after bin Laden for the attack on the USS Cole after they came into office and the CIA and FBI had certified that bin Laden was responsible for the attack? Instead, Liaisson lamely commented that presidents are never happy with their press coverage. And even though Clinton specifically mentioned Fox News, the panel reinterpreted his complaint as being against all media in general.

If Wallace had ever asked anybody in the Bush administration such questions, why didn’t he refer to the interviews or show some of the video from them to prove Clinton wrong?

Wallace interrupted Clinton several times. I’ve never seen anyone on Fox News interrupt Bush in the sycophantic interviews they do with him. Nor have I ever seen anyone ask him or anyone else in the Bush administration a hostile question of the nature Wallace asked Clinton.

Wallace landed this interview for one reason and one reason only in my book – because he rightly criticized ABC for its mock-u-drama about the lead-up to 9/11 which it falsely claimed was based on the 9/11 Commission Report.

Then he burned his source. He'll never get another interview with Clinton. He doesn't deserve any more of President Clinton's time.