Democrats Urged to ‘Stay Off Fox’

PAC MoveOn.org urging rest of party to follow White House lead.

Last Updated: October 20, 2009 @ 6:25 PM

The White House’s renewed war against Fox News continues to rage on – with the administration saying that President Obama won’t appear on the network until at least 2010.

Now MoveOn.org, the lefty political action committee, is urging its 5 million-plus members to tell Hillary Clinton and the rest of the Democratic party to “stay off FOX for as long as he does."

Here’s part of their e-mail:

Dear MoveOn member,

All year, FOX has worked 24/7 to block President Obama’s agenda—repeating lies about "death panels," promoting Tea Party protests, and whipping up fake political scandals.

Now, President Obama is fighting back. The White House communications director said FOX is a "wing of the Republican Party…let’s not pretend they’re a news network." To draw attention to its biased coverage, President Obama will not appear on FOX for the rest of this year.

It’s about time Democrats stood up to FOX! Can you sign this petition asking Democrats to support President Obama’s stance by staying off FOX as long as he does?

Meanwhile on Tuesday, ABC News senior White House correspondent Jake Tapper challenged press secretary Robert Gibbs about the White House’s declaration that Fox is “not a news organization.”

Via Tapper’s blog:

Tapper: It’s escaped none of our notice that the White House has decided in the last few weeks to declare one of our sister organizations “not a news organization” and to tell the rest of us not to treat them like a news organization. Can you explain why it’s appropriate for the White House to decide that a news organization is not one –

Gibbs: Jake, we render, we render an opinion based on some of their coverage and the fairness that, the fairness of that coverage.

Tapper: But that’s a pretty sweeping declaration that they are “not a news organization.” How are they any different from, say –

Gibbs: ABC –

Tapper: ABC. MSNBC. Univision. I mean how are they any different?

Gibbs: You and I should watch sometime.

Later in the day, Fox News SVP of news Michael Clemente issued this statement, responding to Gibbs’ comments:

“Hundreds of journalists come to work each day at FOX News all deeply committed to their craft. It’s disappointing that the White House would be so dismissive of their fine work and continue their vengeful war against a news organization."
 
Despite all this, Clemente said on Sunday that "the door remains open" and Fox would "welcome a discussion about the facts behind the issues."

Until then, it seems, the "war" will rage on.