You didn’t need to watch any of Fox’s coverage of the opening of the George W. Bush presidential library last week to know that it would be slobbering and a blatant example of Fox News Republican Rehab. But I think Fox may have reached a new high (or low, depending on your point of view) in its GOP PR machine with its choice of former Bush press secretary - and current co-host of The Five - Dana Perino to host a tour of the library and a lengthy interview with Bush. The fact that Perino told Bush on the air that she’s his “biggest fan” pretty much said it all. Especially since she must have had some stiff competition among her FNC colleagues.
Don’t get me wrong, I actually like Perino. She’s the only one on The Five (and that includes “liberal” Bob Beckel) whose opinion I usually find interesting. She’s probably the only Fox News host whom I feel is genuine and thoughtful in her comments and doesn’t use her platform as an excuse to showboat with hate mongering. However, as a former employee of Bush 43 and as someone who has said that Bush is “in some ways like a second father to me, a very good friend,” she’s hardly an ideal choice for a news organization as the host of an interview with a controversial president like Bush, especially one that always boasts about being “fair and balanced.” I doubt anybody wondered if the words “Hurricane Katrina” or “Cindy Sheehan” would be uttered.
Still, I was dumbfounded at the final exchange in the special, which is caught in the clip below.
Perino asked Bush, “Who is your biggest fan?”
Bush laughed and said, “Mila,” referring to his newly-born granddaughter.
“No, it’s me.” Perino looked adoringly at him.
Bush put his arm around her. “My sweet press secretary.”
The clip below is from a preview on The Five of the hour-long special Perino hosted. So it was very telling that the producers wanted to highlight this particular bit of doting again. But wait, there's more.
After the preview, as Perino tossed back to Beckel in The Five's studio, she teared up.
“Can I ask you a question?” Beckel began. Think it was about WMD’s? Warnings about an Al Qaeda attack before 9/11 that the Bush administration discounted and ignored? No, “liberal” Beckel said, “As you well know, as much as a disagreement I had with President Bush, I’ve always admired what he did in Africa and I was glad to see that that was (in) that piece. …Do you think enough people recognize how many lives were saved in that continent as a result of that?”
That said, I agree that if MSNBC had an Obama staffer interview him in 2020, say, Fox News would scream at the top of their lungs about it.
Of course, when one of THEIR employees gives an on-air JeffGannon to the man who was that employee’s former boss, well, then, that’s 1000% different.
I used to feel that way about Shep Smith, before he lost the filter on what comes out of his mouth. He still has more political fairness than the rest of Fox, but he’d profess his love for cake if he saw one while shooting a segment.
As for putting more thought into her comments, and refraining from hate mongering… when I first started following Fox, she was like watching cutaway gags. She didn’t stay on subject, and half of it, you honestly weren’t sure if she said it on purpose. I’ll give her that she at least sounds like someone I’d believe was a WH Press Secretary now.
Hell, Dana; you didn’t need to say so.
That much was evident when you claimed there were “no terrorist attacks on US soil under George W. Bush” . . .
The 9/11 attack on US soil, a two-trillion dollar Muslim war waged over non-existent WMDs, the drowning of New Orleans and the Great Recession of 2008. Dumbya’s tarnished legacy will rival that of Warren Harding.
As fawning as Dana’s infomercial was, it is no worse than the BJ that Dumbya received routinely from KKKlannity, Van Suckup, Craputo and Shit Fumes.
Dana has also said we were NEVER attacked on Dubya’s watch!
Outside the bubble, Americans see the truth. Dubya was the worst President in recent history.