Fox News Channels Bret Baier talks to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette about the state of TV news, political coverage, and his recent appearance on “The Daily Show.” The “Daily Show” recollection is particularly interesting, given host Jon Stewart’s appearance this weekend on Fox News Sunday.
Did you think it was fair, the way it was edited? Were you happy with it?
You know, you always go back and say, “Man, I wish I had said something different,” or a different way, but clearly Jon had his point of view going in. I’ll tell you this, the pre-interview for that interview, the producers were telling me how he was really interested in my trip to Afghanistan. I had just been there, my 12th time, and my thoughts on Libya and how the war is going. So I said during the pre-interview, “I’m, sure there’s going to be a lot of talk about Fox News Channel.” And she said, “Oh, yeah, yeah.” It ended up being pretty much that is all he wanted to do. But listen, I thought it was fine. It wasn’t painful, and my friends watch that show a lot, so I think it worked out fine.
Johnny Dollar has audio of Baier reacting to the Stewart/Wallace interview. Later, Baier addresses the concern that the current state of media allows viewers to simply tune into whichever outlet they find ideologically comforting, without ever challenging their own views:
With so many pundits pushing their agendas on cable news and radio, do you think most Americans are just choosing to listen to the guys who confirm what they already think?
I hope not. I mean, I think the news is flowing so fast now. There are so many things happening. In my show, at the meeting every day, we talk about it like it’s drinking from a fire hose because it’s non-stop.
When you are dealing with that level of big items and intricate items like pieces of legislation that affect every American that are being voted on just around the block from where I’m seating, that requires a lot of digging in and providing both sides.
When major news events happen, don’t you think people ultimately go to the channel or network they always have?
Sure, I think that’s true. Big events get big, big numbers for people tuning in. Hopefully, you’ve built with what you done on air for years a trust with the viewership that they can tune in and say, “This is somebody I trust to deliver the news.”