Fox’s “straight news” anchor Martha MacCallum was so eager to defend Donald Trump's family separations policy in an interview with Marianne Williamson, the host actually called the policy a kindness to immigrant children “in some cases.”
Williamson did a good job of pushing back against MacCallum’s baloney without becoming antagonistic.
First, MacCallum defended Trump’s family separations by saying President Barack Obama did it, too. As if Fox would ever defend anything Obama did except in service of propping up Dear Leader Trump. But in any event, this is at best misleading and either anchor MacCallum is misinformed on one of the main topics in the news or she deliberately deceived her viewers.
In defending its “zero tolerance” border policy that has caused the separation of families, the Trump administration has argued that the Obama and Bush administrations did this too. That’s misleading. Experts say there were some separations under previous administrations, but no blanket policy to prosecute parents and, therefore, separate them from their children.
“Bush and Obama did not have policies that resulted in the mass separation of parents and children like we’re seeing under the current administration,” Sarah Pierce, a policy analyst with the Migration Policy Institute, told us.
That was bad enough.
But after Williamson challenged the claim, MacCallum came up with the "Trump's doing the kids a favor" line:
MACCALLUM: In some cases, you’re helping that child because that child has no connection to that family in some cases.
Williamson shot back that “we have trained agents” at the border “who know how to vet that.”
MacCallum didn’t bother to provide numbers on how many children have been “helped” by being put in cages and separated from the adults they came with when they arrive here.
Later, when Williamson called for more ports of entry at the border, MacCallum tried to score a cheap partisan point by disingenuously saying, “So you think we should just let them through.” This, despite the fact that Williamson had repeatedly said she’s for legal immigration and not for open borders.
Williamson had a good comeback, though. She told MacCallum to stop putting words in her mouth.
Watch MacCallum prove herself a Trump mouthpiece and nothing close to the “ultimate journalistic integrity and professionalism” Fox News claims below, from the August 7, 2019 The Story with Martha MacCallum.
A quick aside to John. Marianne is like 90% astute and 10% total crackpot. Unsurprisingly, the media finds the crackpot more entertaining so it gets all of the attention. A good example of this mix is a recent Bill Maher Real Time featuring Williams. She was impressive up until the very end where she slipped off the deep end, as I recall.
One thing that concerns me – politically – is Williams agreeing with Trump’s merit-based immigration proposal. It sounds like some variation of the H1B program which I have personal experience with. It is abused by employers, particularly in the tech industry, and exploits badly employees – both American citizens and immigrants.
Marianne does a solid job in the hot seat and, of course, it’s easy for me to say she missed two critical opportunities off the top of my head.
One, the false equivalency between Obama and Trump on family separations. The Obama policy was only to separate children when somehow a family member put them at risk or was guilty of some other serious crime. Never to punish. Two, MacCallum’s distortion on Trump not closing down ports of entry belies the truth he’s pressured the Mexican government to militarize their southern border to stop immigrants and Trump is forcing immigrants to stay in Mexico as he restricts asylum hearings to a trickle.