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OPINION

Media Analyst David Folkenflik: Fox News Is Guilty of What National Public Radio and the Media Have Done

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
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Hype, hysteria, accusatory claims, and nightmare scenarios – this has been serving as the bulk of the press coverage of the November presidential election, with no shortage of promised doom should Donald Trump win. It is widely recognized that this is also what has inspired the numerous lawsuits leveled at Trump, all done to hang the “Convicted Felon” tag on him for the balance of the election season.

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The wailing predictions delivered in quotidian fashion have drifted from grave assurances to hyperbolic speeches, to now just tired histrionics that have become white noise. Polling has reflected that Biden’s prospects continue to slide, so the screeching has become elevated to a level that the plotlines seen on the news networks would be rejected by the SyFy Channel as being too divorced from reality. 

With these dystopian fantasies in mind, it is with amusement that we see those in the press attempting to declare that the Republican Party and any sympathetic conservative outlets are the ones trafficking in fear this election. It is projection of the lowest order, and the lack of introspection seen on National Public Radio during the trial delivers some supreme comedy.

On a segment from “All Things Considered”, the outlet’s misnamed “media” expert, David Folkenflik chimed in. Being that David is best described as a buttoned-down Brian Stelter, he was brought on to deliver what is his primary mission statement – commentary on one medium, Fox News. 

He began by stating the network was “stacking the deck” in its coverage of the trial. This is deeply amusing coming from the network that, for months now, has been trying to prove it is unbiased, and failing. Rare has been a voice from the right in commenting on the Trump court case, with Hugh Hewitt standing out as one of the very few. But in covering the closing arguments NPR brought in Tristan Snell, former New York Assistant State Attorney, and who wrote the book “Taking Down Trump.” How is that deck looking, David?

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When he began the segment Folkenflik was fed a question on Fox, and he launched into his expected cant on the topic. “You're right to want to look at Fox first because it's the most highly watched news station in the country and was again yesterday, and it's especially dominant for setting the tone for conservatives and Republicans.”


You can check off the compulsory commentary of Republican voters being incapable of thinking on their own.

Next, David played a clip from Jesse Watters, where the primetime host mentioned “evil forces” that he said were “destroying this republic.” Dastardly stuff. He described this as “clearly identifying with Trump a fight of good versus evil.” This then led Folkenflik into further commentary on the coverage of the trial from his favorite target.

You know, with few exceptions in conservative media…you know, this insulates Trump from having to grapple among his base or people who are leaning conservative with revelations of the trial and repercussions of the verdict - little sense that Trump has agency here. They're told to see him as a victim of political persecution.

David gives a pedantic rundown of the trial-by-jury process, implying conservatives deny the legal system in calling this “illegitimate.” He avoids entirely the process leading to the trial, how Alvin Bragg resuscitated a dead case and needed to concoct felony charges out of what are misdemeanors that had passed their statute of limitations. Instead, conservatives are attacking the legal system, and Watters represents the claim from the right of attacks on our government.

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Suuuuurrre, it is conservatives and Republicans promising the ruination of the country. Except for months now we have endured a barrage of promised doom for the U.S. of A., should Trump return to the White House. Here is a lengthy, yet truncated list of the hysterics seen in the press this year.

  • 2/27 Nicolle Wallace - Returning from maternity leave she launched a new segment on “Deadline: White House” -  “Trump supporters call for a revolution if Biden wins.”

  • 2/28 Rachel Maddow - “Trump cannot leave office and he is welcome to commit any crimes he wants to, as long as he is still president.”

  • 2/28 Chris Hayes - “Trump attempted to end democracy.”

  • 2/28 Joy Reid - The state of Alabama wants more white children so they can do slave labor to kick out immigrants.

  • 3/6 Nicolle Wallace - “This election can be defined as the ‘Do You Want to Have Any More Elections?’ election."

  • 3/7 Van Jones - Promised we will see “Russian tanks rolling through Europe.”

  • 3/7 Michael Beschloss - “We can be a dictatorship next year.”

  • 3/13 David Frum (on CNN) - Compares Trump to a comet about to destroy Earth, and Biden captains the rocket sent to divert it.

  • 4/6 Symone Sanders - Trump promised “carnage” at his inaugural.

  • 4/8 Rep. Dan Goldman - Trump will weaponize the DOJ.

  • 4/24 Cassidy Hutchinson - On CNN she promises if Trump is elected it will be the end of elections.

  • 4/24 Hillary Clinton - Trump wants to kill his opposition.

  • 4/26 NPR’s “Left, Right, Center” - “Trump is brazenly undemocratic. Can you believe in democracy without being pro-Biden?”

  • 4/28 James Carville - Declares under Trump there will be no government left, there will be no rights left, you will live under theocracy

  • 4/30 Andrew Weismann - We are one vote away from the end of democracy as we know it.

  • 5/5 Jon Karl - Trump makes this the most important election of our lifetime. (Yes, again.)

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Note: This list was made without the daily daybreak intonations of our guaranteed demise from the overcaffeinated panels of “Morning Joe.”

For anyone in the press to pretend the Republicans are the ones pushing out fear porn is a sign of blatant delusion. To see this coming from a media correspondent brings this to a new level of mirth. 




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