Bill O’Reilly took nearly half the time of his 5:29 discussion segment with Senator Marco Rubio last night to coach him about how he should have handled that now-infamous drink of water during his State of the Union rebuttal speech. O’Reilly insisted he would have done the same thing for a Democrat – and maybe so. But I doubt he would have spent 2:30 minutes of Fox News airtime for the friendly lesson.
Rubio appeared on the The O’Reilly Factor ostensibly to discuss the looming sequester. But at about 2:45 into the discussion, O’Reilly said, “I’ve got to take a drink of water here,” and took a “little sip” from a cup. After a bit of back and forth, O’Reilly offered up his “TV advice:”
I’ve been in this business for 36 years so I know a little bit about it. Whenever you’re on television, particularly live television… you gotta tell the folks everything, everything! So, when you were giving that speech… when you wanted to take your water, you just tell the folks that! You just say, ‘Excuse me, I’m a little parched here, I gotta get a drink of water, I’ll be right back.’ You smile. You take your little water which should have been closer to you, by the way. And the pinhead who put it far away – you gotta slap him around a little bit. And then you take your sip, you smile again and you go, ‘Aw, that was good!’ And now go back!
O’Reilly jabbed his finger at the camera, then continued:
That’s what’s called performing. And you know who’s a brilliant performer doing that? You know who is? …Barack Obama! …He’s got everything scripted! That’s the age we live in.
Rubio was a good sport. Although O'Reilly was more than a little condescending, Rubio said, smiling, that he doesn’t “anticipate doing that again in the future but if I get a chance, it’s good advice and I’ll take it.”
But O’Reilly continued, telling Rubio to “just be natural,” and “tell the folks whatever’s on your mind, whatever is goin’ on. People want authenticity, Senator. …And if you can fake that, the sky’s the limit.” O'Reilly laughed heartily.
“Or a really long straw,” Rubio quipped.
Just a little fair and balanced media consult on the No Spin Zone.