how this could happen. it was a week of big news and which bias affected the news coverage. on the panel this week, writer and fox news contributor judy miller. radio talk show host, monica crowley. jim pinkerton, the editor conservative magazine and richard grinle who served as press spokesman for the last ambassadors to the u.n. i'm jon scott. fox news watch is on right now.
the scene in benghazi, libya, tuesday night. september 11th as what was believed to be, what were believed to be reuters storming the u.s. cons the lat protesting an answered muslim film supposedly from this country and for the u.s. attacking cairo egypt ap tearing down the american flag. somebody tweeted this, we firmly reject the action of those who use the universal right of freedom of speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others. politico tried to have the statement like this, the statement by the embassy cairo was not cleared by the washington and does not reflect the views of the nights government and mitt romney reacted with this statement, i am outraged by the attacks on americans in
diplomatic mission ins libya and egypt and by the death of an american consulate worker in benghazi. >> ultimately the administration was wrong to stand by a statement with those who breached our embassy in egypt. instead of condemning their actions. it's never too early for the united states government to condemn attacks on americans, and to defend our values. and the white house distanced itself last night from the the statement, saying it wasn't cleared by washington. and reflects the mixed signals they're sending to the world. >> the president also faced the media on wednesday. >> the united states condemns in the strongest terms its outrageous and shocking attacks and working with the government of libya to secure our diplomates and to increase our security at places around the world. >> an extremely abbreviated
time line, the question for us here on news watch, how did the media react or fail to react to the news and the real issues surrounding these events. let's first go to fox news correspondent shannon bream for more. >> late tuesday, mitt romney released a statement calling the initial response to the attacks in egypt disgraceful saying they appeared to quote, sympathize with those who waged attacks and that original response came in the the form of an embassy statement which secretary of state hillary clinton had reportedly rejected and senior officials say the white house never approved. yet, despite the distance the administration seemed to want between it and the embassy statements, only romney seems to be taking the heat for criticizing it. >> this statement looks craft and tone deaf in the light of this-- >> and the columnist called it unwise, inaccurate and unpresidential. >> and the story, how hard the
president's policies are affecting what's happening over there. instead, it's become mitt romney's problem. >> just before romney faced the press to make a statement about the tragedy in libya, and take questions, reporters could be heard conferring with each other. >> i would think regret your question. i mean, your statement, not even the tone, but then go-- >> media watchers, including john stossel says that conversations like that aren't necessarily rare. >> they have a limited time with the president, the candidate, and they want to make sure they get an answer to the question so they'll do a little coordination. >> in the end rather than being pressed for details, regarding who was or was not guarding the consulate or cancel a fundraiser in las vegas, the president in a sit-down interview was asked about and given the chance to criticize romney. >> it couldn't play better for the president because it takes a lot of heat off from him.
he's the president, the one whose policies are under question and much of the heat is being taken off of him. >> seven of the eight questions romney took from reporters wednesday were about his statement rather than the events in libya and egypt. after the president gave his statement at the white house, he took no questions. for news watch, i'm shannon bream in washington. >> so shannon raises a number of questions there about the events of the week and the coverage of it. we'll get to some of them here in this program. jim, first of all, the president, other than a sit-down with 60 minutes and telemundo, he hasn't answered questions from the media about the terrible events of this week, why not? >> well, he's chosen not to, in many ways, wise and so the situation is so fluid. but look, as rich benedetto who covered the white house when i was in the bush 41 administration, said look, this is playing to the president's advantage like, and here is how. there's many stories with the press that we talked about. we talked about libya and the
death of ambassador stevens, not that they're ignoring that, talking about egypt and the tick tock and who said what and the cheney command and so on and the arab spring. and we're talking about the global vision and peggy noonan wrote a column one man with a movie set off a chain of events around the world. or see this through the prism of the presidential campaign and take one statement from mitt romney and turn that into, as best they could, the week's news until probably by friday, the story had gotten so serious they had to realize now, the real issue is the middle east and chances that anybody in the middle east is listening to mitt romney are zero. no, nobody tracking the u.s. embassy is upset because mitt romney said something on tuesday, on wednesday. >> jon: that raises, that's the question, judy, the story of the week and what did mitt romney say and when did he say it when nobody is asking about, you know, why were we not prepared for attacks for the embassy on 9/11? >> there was clearly a
question that should have been addressed along with other issues, how is it possible that a junior public affairs officer, someone who is reporting to the ambassador in egypt, who was not in egypt, but was in washington, did not clear a statement that had tremendous-- caused tremendous controversy. what about the movie? is there a movie at that caused this whole recognizance ruckus, supposedly, we don't know that it did yet. there are so many facts yet to be determined that to turn this into a political falderol is missing the story. >> and you had an article in the daily beast, before we do, we should say that you were on a romney advisement team earlier in his campaign, but you said, why is it okay for the secretary of state to condemn the cairo statement and tweet as a statement, but not okay for mitt romney to do the same? >> yeah, i find it really puzzling. i worked at the state
department for eight years in the bush administration. i know what it's like to serve in a diplomatic post and try to get washington to approve something. takes a very long time. i think that's the frustration here for me is that why are we critiquing when mitt romney spoke or the timing, whether it was too early? i think the simple fact is the president of the united states waited 15 hours while a developing situation took hold and became more violent. why aren't we asking where the president was during those 15 hours? if i was out in embassy cairo dealing with all of this, as it was unfolding, i want the president of the united states to start condemning this violence. the president's first statement was to condemn mitt romney and i think that's just not right. >> jon: and the press seemed to echo that and was that the appropriate response of the media given what happened. the former secretary of
defense under george w. bush came to romney's defense. here was this tweet from donald rumsfeld, the attack on our embassies and diplomates are a result of perceived american weakness, mitt romney is right to point that out. is anyone in the media saying that, monica. >> no, but this is exactly the point, mitt romney is running not just to be president, but to be commander-in-chief, so, he was perfectly within his rights to say what he said, being critical of the president's response, but the bigger point is that we do have a sitting commander-in-chief right now and this is about his policies, that in large part, not wholly, but large part led to this mess and instead, we have a press an elite press corps that's obsessed with two things, one, the horse race, so they always try to squeeze these things into a political narrative a lot of times when it doesn't exist or shouldn't exist, number two, in full protect obama mode and that's what you saw this week, what is going on in the middle east, what's happening in washington right now, under this president?
this is not about mitt romney, this is about barack obama and those questions have not been raised. >> jon: talking about diplomacy by twitter. take a look at tweets and the articles that came after. mark halprin tweeted, unless mitt romney has gained the crisis manner some invisible to the gang of 500, doubling down is the most craven and ill-advised move of 12. and this appeared on times website, it looked very similar, read it yourself. about the romney campaign has gamed out the crisis and so on. and howard kirtz tweeted did mitt romney pull the trigger too soon on statement ripping administration over libyan consulate killing. and this headline in the daily beast, mitt romney's ill-timed assault on president obama, as americans are killed abroad. and l.a. times james rainy tweeted, cockeyed mitt romney takes libyan tragedy and find a way to side with moronic pastor terry jones.
and then came this headline in the l.a. times, mitt romney should triple down on libya rally with reverend jones. so are the tweets sort of influencing the way this gets covered, the narrative of this? which comes first the chicken or the egg? and i don't know if the the tweets hadn't happened it would have had the same thing, but you look at that and you have to say, just, do they even care about what was actually unfolding in front of their eyes in the middle east? because, you see the outrage of accusing the president of being assaulted? i'm sorry, there were human beings being murdered and our embassy was under attack, ab we were watching our american flag being torn up and burned and the islamic flag flying over our embassy. i really do wonder, i'm asking legitimately as i look at those, do they even care? it doesn't seem like any sense of something terrible is happening and we should be paying attention to it and
what was raised earlier, the absolute radio silence. richard was 100% correct. where was the president and why was the first thing they said about mitt romney's statement. >> jon: all right thement we have to take a break and next on news watch, did the members of the the media plot to ambush mitt romney this week? >> the united states condemns in the strongest terms this outrageous and shocking attack. >> america will not tolerate attacks against our citizens and against our embassies. we have confidence in our cause in america. >> president obama and governor romney reacting to attacks against our embassies. which man got more media attention, and why? the answer is next on news watch.
on this. and obsess they did. they are fascinated by this process story to beat up mitt romney rather than taking a step back and looking at the bigger question about policy. >> jon: fox news contributor commenting on media reaction to mitt romney's press conference about the attacks on u.s. embassies earlier this week and to the point that some members of the press were obsessing on romney's reaction prior to the governor's arrival. >> i would say to your question, your statement, not even the tone.... >> it was covered on the one session. >> do you stand by your statement. >> jon: if that was media plot, here is how it unfolded later.
>> do you regretted the tone now given what we know now? >> coming so soon how the events unfolded was appropriate to be weighing on this dreisz is unfolding in realtime. >> talking about the video. isn't it film when you criticize the situation when americans are being killed. >> you you jump the gun last night and you should have waited until more details were available until we learned about all this happening? >> we have peeled back the curtain a bit on reporter behavior. this kind of thing happens on every big news conference. >> because there is one subject that the press, the press corps or people following politics must be addressed and they decide it's going to be addressed but what is interesting about this everyone asked the same question.
i was struck by the criticism of governor romney from conservative republicans, some people bike peg any noonan who talked about a verbal cringe and romney looking like nixon in the middle of this press conference. i think ultimately the american tendency is to rally around the presidency at the moment of crisis so not only what he said was probably bad policy but bad politics. >> jon: jim, the timing though, he gets hammered for criticizing the statements he put out the night before, but that statement seemed to be in line what the state department had done? >> right. and that press conference, what mark halperin was quoted as saying, the gang of 500, if you ever needed to illustrate the conservative critique, 500 people out of 315 million and who generally has all the
studies from the from for the need public suggests, marry each other and operate as a unit between mark halperin'snumeration you can see it in action. >> jon: i'm not sure anyone has the perspective where you had to stand up in the bank of microphones and answer reporter questions, give us your thoughts? >> it's really unbelievable the group thing and i think it's getting works every single year. i don't blame lazy journalists but i do think the 24-hour news cycle the pressure to be first, the pressure to tweet. the pressure to do something on social media means that these journalists are having to rush too much. there is a danger in that. that is why twitter and other sources are really good to put the pressure on reporters that continue the group thing. what you saw from cbs news and
npr there conspiring happens all the time where it's the press versus the one person behind the podium. we have to get back where the press is competitive. they are checking each other and we have multiple news sources. that is where you get the accurate information. >> jon: judy talked about conservatives who attacked mitt romney for the whole thing, but there was some support from conservatives like rich lowery and occasional panelist on this program. he wrote in the journal, the reports from earlier this week about how obama would use foreign policy had barrel faded when where they --
this was tantamount to an ambush by the governor. it showed in the tone and structure of each one of those questions, judy was right. it's all basically the same question and when did you stop beating your wife, governor. those are the kinds of questions. we have lost sight or maybe they just don't care about the bigger picture here. why was it that these embassies were so ill prepared for 9/11 when we got word that the state department and white house were given a warning by egyptian intelligence that this could happen. >> jon: he disavowed that. >> we'll see how that works out but the question should be
raised. why has the president blown off the intelligence briefings including the one the day after the attack of september 12th when he was flying back from vegas and the bigger question about investigating whether or not we're looking at a new axis of terror between the muslim brotherhood. new president was in tehran last week. how about investigating some of that rather than focusing all of your fire on governor romney who is not yet commander in chief. >> jon: what about the commander in chief said he isn't sure whether egypt is an alley or -- ally or they are not an enemy? >> they wanted an answer and there was a lot of pressure put on the state department. but what happened. they are still are an ally. so the president was in fact trying to send a message
overseas it wasn't coordinated with the state department. i think if that was republican president it will probably it would prove he was out of touch in the same way and total radio silence has this was unfolding. but nobody seemed to be interested in that component. >> jon: do you have a thought on that? >> it's a really good point that hillary, secretary of state clinton really had to step in and be the adult. she was the first one positive respond. she stood next to the president when the president was reading scripted statement. i think there is somebody needs to ask the question about the 3:00 a.m. phone call we keep hearing clearly this phone call was ringing all night long and president obama was sleeping. he slept through the night and didn't comment until the next morning. hillary answered the call. there are some really good lines of questioning that needs to be
done and haven't been done because everything has been focused about mitt romney going too early and they were asking if obama went too late. >> if you see something, e-mail us at foxnews.com. >> what grade would you give the media this week? >> have the media hit a new low in the coverage of the attacks on u.s. embassies? rush to judgment, reporting wrong facts, sensational reporting is this a new pattern for bad journalism? the answer is next on news watch.
protestors say insults islam. halfway around the world in cairo an explosion. muslim protestors stormed the embassy angry over a film they consider insulting they consider to the prophet muhammad. >> jon: broadcast from september 11th. cbs missed the attack on the embassy and led with president obama's first interview since the national convention. what about that? cbs, attacks on our embassy and cbs zuntd put it on at all? >> i think the "new york times" has more than excuse than cbs does because the "new york times" played attacks not even on the front page. that is time thing. no explanation for cbs. >> i have one. they made a deal with president obama they would put him first if he agreed to be interviewed. >> that is such a conspiracy
theory. where is support for that? >> they didn't touch it. look, ericer rick son said first the media had to be clowned. he said this most traffic spees in years. people understand what the media are doing and look to other sources. >> it was stun that go cbs did not cover it at all but the would other clips where you have two other major broadcasts and hanging the rights on the film when the film had nothing to do with it. this happened with september 11th. this is well planned in advance. there have been reports that libyan attack was retribution retaliation for the drone strike that took out the number two al-qaeda leader who is libyan descent. so to hang this on the film was grossly irresponsible. >> jon: other stories that the
i'm rick folbaum. f.b.i. is on the ground in libya hunting for those into the demonstration that turned it into a violent attack. they are stepping up drone flights and sending intelligence agents those suspected of killing ambassador chris stevens and three other americans. meantime, at home a teachers strike in chicago could soon be coming to an end. they are working out the details to end the walkout. it's affected more than 350,000 student with local officials in chicago approve the plan tomorrow, students could be back in class by this monday. i'm rick folbaum. join me at 6:00 p.m. on america's news headquarters. now back to fox news watch right here on fox news channel. for all the headlines, log on at foxnews.com.
the netanyahu story had been the big story but it's been covered up. what do you think about the coverage the media gave his points? >> i think it was a direct assault at president obama and you can't blame the israelis for being frustrated. here, the white house was scrambling before all of this mess in the middle east started with the violence and killing of our ambassador. what was really happening is the white house was trying to say that the israelis didn't really ask for a meeting in washington with the president. that when the president goes to the u.n. general assembly he didn't have a lot of time to meet with the israelis. i've been involved in eight of the last previous plannings for the president coming to the u.n. under president bush. the simple fact the united states gets to meet with
whomever they want to meet with. it's a silly argument to say we didn't get a formal request to meet in new york and the president is not going to be there and we're going miss each other in washington. if you want to meet with the israelis and meet with the pakistanis you get to meet with them. >> jon: so is the media defending the president on this? >> i mean it depends on who you talk to. the administration didn't get a request. i defer to judy on this. i think the question has to be raised what is obama administration supposed to do. are they going to agree to go to war with iran. that is conversation that needs to be have instead of the tit-for-tat did they have meeting here. what are we talking about here. >> i think the subject, joe cline articulated one view is he called netanyahu's statement
treajdz and disgusting. there is a lot of disgust going around the capital because he, quote, dared to interject himself into american politics. the line the obama line is going to be, trying to draw us into a war. that is a powerful narrative. i think the israelis were stunned by it. they are not happy about it. they are countering with people that understandable desire to have the president set a red line. >> the elite media use words like disgust doing to describe terrorist regimes like iran rather than one of our key allies israel. white house acknowledged that netanyahu put in a request because they claimed scheduling conflicts. so the president of united states will meet with david letterman but not with benjamin netanyahu. the other thing the press should be investigating.
they should connect to the dots. democratic platform had a huge controversy and what they ended up doing, yes, they inserted the jerusalem capital of israel language but they stripped out language from the previous platform strong language against hamas and the palestinians right to return. don't think for one second that the enemies of the united states and the enemies of israel weren't paying very close attention to that. >> i'm not saying we saw that this week but there is certainly a story to tell as part of the broader narrative. the press hasn't looked at it. >> we know that the press, again the u.s.-israeli relations and israeli iranian are probably more important than what we talked about the first half-hour of the show. as kirsten we may be a war.
>> and how will this week's events affect the presidential polls and will the media react? >> the polls have them up, the polls have them down. which polls do the media believe? which do they report and why? details next on "news watch." bayer? this isn't just a headache. trust me, this is new bayer migraine. [ male announcer ] it's the power of aspirin plus more in a triple action formula to relieve your tough migraines. new bayer migraine formula. tomato, obviously. haha. there's more than that though, there's a kick to it. wahlalalalallala! smooth, but crisp. it's kind of like drinking a food that's a drink, or a drink that's a food, woooooh! [ male announcer ] taste it and describe the indescribable. could've had a v8. [ male announcer ] taste it and describe the indescribable. [ dog ] we found it together.upbeat ] on a walk, walk, walk. love to walk. yeah, we found that wonderful thing.
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>>. >> jon: here a rasmussen poll tracking the presidential race. mitt romney has a one-point lead a statistical tie within the margin of error and team obama with a five-point lead. media tend to make a big deal in any poll not so much when mitt romney is on top. a pollster for team romney had this advice for the press. he said, don't get too worked up about the latest polling. while some will feel a sugar high after the convention the basic structure hasn't changed significantly.
reality of the obama economy will reassert itself as the downfall of the obama presidency and mitt romney will win this race. so, jim, what about the reaction to the media on poll numbers? >> i think the media has john nulty was saying, they have been trying to turn the polls, any poll shows obama up a point, it's unmistakable that obama will win reelection. however, it does seem like the polls are drifting down on romney. if neil says the number one issue is economy and last days of the week is consumed with foreign policy. as we have seen in past presidencies it helps the incumbent. >> jon: don't the polls lean to the democratic side? >> polling is not my strength, but i do notice that jennifer rubin of the washington post blogged that why do we not focus
on the 11-point lead that governor romney has among independents over the president? why are some polls more important than other polls? i think too much is made of this and there is clearly a self-fulfilling prophesy desire here. the polling i've seen in the three states that matter according to chuck todd who was talking about this on friday morning suggested it's going to be neck and neck. very close too close so we'll see. >> it's interesting when you looking on the report understanding get a new poll out. it's creating a perception the president has sort of a land slide victory on the way. no, the convention bounces over and mitt romney has the lead and among independents it's a perception. but you are right because there are more registered republicans and democrats nationwide and
it's how many. a lot of the polls where you see the president with a five or six-point lead you go into the internals and they have been oversampling democrats by 13 points. you have to take it as a grain of salt. you take a look at the polls two weeks before the election because a lot of polls realize their reputation is on the line. likely voters getting a quick and accurate view who might come out on election day. two weeks before the election that is when you should start paying attention to the polls. >> jon: kirsten you worked in media relations? >> in the white house. >> jon: did you have a finger in trying on spin polls? >> not where i worked. it wasn't necessarily, we were much more focused on international affairs. i think the thing is, i think jim hit on most likely what will happen is americans will rally
around the president in this situation because whenever we're under attack, americans tend to come together and tend to come around the president. the fact that it also hasn't gotten any coverage of the negative aspects is going to make it greater. >> jon: rick, bring your thoughts from the west coast? >> it depends on whether they are getting registered voters or likely voters. i don't put a lot of stake in polls. if polls were accurate we would have president john kerry. no pollster has ever called me. i find it silly on to be putting a lot of confidence in polls in early september. >> jon: coming up a new film about president does well at the box office but not so much with the media.
>>. >> jon: 2016, obama's measuring is the second highest grossing documentary of all time. it's a gripping visual journey in the heart. world's most powerful office. it asks the question, if obama wins a second term where will we be in 2016? this film is not getting much attention from the mainstream media. the director had this to say what he believed is the biased press. if mitt romney had a half-brother living in a slum it would be on topic on msnbc, cbs news and all the sunday talk shows but this fact is not reported by those outlets. they pretend it doesn't exist. it's immensely interesting that 50 times quoted the bible --
>> jon: he is referring to president obama's half-brother that is living in squalor in africa. >> it's very interesting how the media has tried to ignore this. because such enormous success at box office they haven't been able to ignore it for long. the box office receipts are pretty good. hollywood is absolutely, i think they have no idea what to make of this film but it's interesting when you have a political documentary saying something or michael moore, "nightline" did some stories and some of the other movies they called him an american populist in the grand tradition. when they were covering 2016 they denigrated it, they disregarded it and they mocked it. >> jon: they loved michael moore gets invited on the tonight show. >> wins academy awards. [ laughter ] what he is tapping in to the
media have let obama emerge to becoming president, for decades 6 his life are virtual unknowns. all his pot smoking group in high school none of them are being interviewed. any reporter or digger or documentary, they do take the trouble to do the work, automatically gets attention. the gang of 500 doesn't want to do it. >> we talked earlier about the power of tweets and how they can influence the narrative. here is an examine, a political writer for the san francisco chronicle. this week she re-tweeted from code pink, karl rove will be in the sf bay, join us on 9/11 where karl speaks. she says she doesn't endorse the tweets but the question, he is
also retweeted tngs from conservative groups but is that appropriate for a political reporter to be doing? >> again, twitter has that, it's the home page of political conversation. second of all it gets instant gratification, many people, most obviously anthony weiner came to grief over there. >> you say fyi you are passing on information but you are not like endorsing it. >> jon: it on sounded like a promotion of a protest. what should be expected from the media on 9/11.
>>. >> jon: most networks and cable news channels cover the moment of silence marking the time when is the first plane hit the world trade center 11 years ago. nbc chose to ignore the event and showed an interview with kardashian mom chris jenner. some may wonder what is the big deal. some missed part of the ceremonies, aren't there are lots of channels where it was covered up. there certainly are. and somber events that are held each year are not news in the purist sense, they are history lessons for a nation too often
ready to move on to forget to ignore. that is why they deserve the full attention and complete coverage from the news media. 9/11 attacks by a small band of islamic fanatics half a world away snuffed out 3,000 americans and permanently altered life for the rest of us. two wars and arguments over water boarding and patriot act, creation of the tsa and uncomfortable airport screening, these changes because of zealots resent our freedom. we need to remind americans how good we have it and how bad that day. the innocent victims of 9/11 and troops who died because of that terrible day truly deserving recognition. we in the media must remember that and in our coverage help the nation remember, as well.