Apparently, Anna Kooiman is still so moved by her “spiritual experience” of hearing Donald Trump’s July 4th speech that she has remained blind to the pile of evidence of how he and the GOP have tried to use the census citizenship question to rig political redistricting.
Just as I suspected when Kooiman related her ecstasy over Trump’s corrupt, mistake-ridden speech, she got rehired at Fox almost immediately thereafter. On yesterday’s Outnumbered, perhaps with an eye for a permanent cohosting spot, she continued her ridiculously pro-Trump commentary.
Cohost Harris Faulkner opened the discussion by reiterating and validating Donald Trump’s lie that he had not backed down from his attempt to flout the Supreme Court ruling disallowing his attempt to put a citizenship question on the 2020 census but had merely found a better way. As CNN's Brian Stelter pointed out, Fox was the lone network promoting this dishonest take.
“President Trump now going on a different route in his push to get a tally of the citizens in our country,” Faulkner said. She somehow “forgot” to mention that, as The Washington Post reported, “The Census Bureau already was doing what Trump ordered, but the president didn’t mention that and described his move as a new direction.” Funny how her messaging was right in sync with Trump’s.
“The president says [his order] will eliminate obstacles in data sharing and ultimately get a more complete count of citizens than if the census question were there,” Faulkner continued. Then she played a clip of Trump claiming that his plan will get more accurate information than the census would have. Of course, she never questioned why, then, Trump had not gone this route in the first place.
“Not only didn’t I back down, I backed up,” Trump ludicrously claimed. But, naturally, Trump-worshiping Faulkner didn’t challenge a word. Instead, she went on to suggest that only a Trump-hating partisan would call Trump’s retreat “a retreat.” “Democrats immediately characterized the president’s move as a retreat,” she said disdainfully. Her voice rose as she added, “2020 candidates stepped up criticism of his push to get citizenship data.”
We next saw clips of candidates Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Sen. Kamala Harris condemning the citizenship question as an “excuse to stir up hate” and “weaken our democracy,” without Faulkner bothering to explain why they think so, followed by a clip of Mayor Pete Buttigieg calling the question “clearly racially and politically motivated.”
Kooiman was the first to weigh in.
KOOIMAN: What are they talking about? How is this racially and politically motivated? Why would we not want to know not just how many people are here but how many people are actually citizens here? Is this the Democrats worried about somehow if we figure out how many citizens there are instead of just population numbers that lines will be redrawn and representation will change?
In fact, it has already been proven, via a recently uncovered memo, that keeping power for (white) Republicans is exactly the goal of the question.
Democratic cohost Jessica Tarlov jumped in to note the memo, that Trump had admitted the goal and that the Supreme Court called the administration’s blatantly false rationale, that a citizenship question would strengthen the Voting Rights Act, “contrived.”
But before Tarlov could finish, cohost Katie Pavlich, ever the people-of-color hater, jumped in to sneer, “So you’re admitting that illegal immigration benefits Democrats when it comes to representation in Washington.”
No, of course Tarlov was not. She went on to offer a vigorous argument. But once again, I’ll say that advocating a Democratic position, without calling out how Fox is deliberately pulling propagandistic wool over its viewers eyes, is not what’s needed from Democrats on Fox. And while I’m sympathetic to Tarlov, who seems like a lovely and decent person who is no doubt hamstrung by being under contract with Fox, the fact is that not calling out the tactics is tantamount to enabling them.
Meanwhile, watch Kooiman below. Whether she was shockingly ignorant or deliberately dishonest doesn’t matter, as neither should have any place in what Fox presents as news analysis. It’s from the July 12, 2019 Outnumbered.
Okay, let’s straighten this one out, as Fox News and AM Radio are having fun trying to gaslight the whole thing.
First, as Ellen notes, the whole point of putting this question on the general census is to make sure that a bunch of Chicano residents do NOT fill it out, regardless of whether they are citizens. This is to help the Right Wing limit any representation those people get, and to cut as much funding as possible from those areas.
Second, the Right Wing is LYING when they say they’re just adding back on a question that was already there until 2010. In fact, the citizenship question has not been on the GENERAL census since around 1950. It was only put on after the Civil War as a way of intimidating former slaves and immigrants from participating. It went on and off, depending on the mood of the country, including the whole anti-immigrant mess we went through at the end of WWII. By the time we got to the modern age, the citizenship question was only given to a less-than-3% sample of the population, who were filling out a much longer and more complicated form. The Pence White House’s aim here is to put the citizenship tripwire into the general census so EVERYONE would have it – something that has not been the case for generations, and for good reason.
Third, Jessica Tarlov may be a wonderful person, but she knew what she was getting into when she took a paycheck from Fox News. I realize that even Jeff Cohen has done this at one point, but it’s still tarnished money. And it frankly hasn’t ended well for a single Dem who took that money, whether that be Dennis Kucinich, James Carville or Tamara Holder. I frankly wouldn’t recommend ANYONE take Fox’s offer, and I’d point them to actual news outlets instead.