It probably comes as no surprise that the Obama Administration isn't a fan of Fox News Channel, but how deep must the animus go to flat-out deny the network access to interviews with key White House officials? Especially when other networks like CNN, NBC, CBS, and ABC, are given free reign.
While many conservatives have always suspected a White House bias towards Fox, now there's written proof.
Yes, White House emails obtained by the group Judicial Watch -- a conservative non-partisan organization whose stated mission is to seek government accountability -- contain some rather damning evidence of White House official's disdain for Fox News. The emails reportedly date back to 2009, during a time when the White House was in a battle with Fox News Channel. The issue was whether the administration had excluded Fox News from interviews with its top officials, most notably Obama's "pay czar."
Regarding general anti-FNC bias within the Obama White House in an October 23, 2009, email exchange between Jennifer Psaki, Deputy White House Communications Director and [Treasury Department press aide] Jenni LeCompte, Psaki writes, “I am putting some dead fish in the fox cubby – just cause”. In an email on the night of October 22, 2009, commenting on a report by Fox News Channel anchor Bret Baier noting the exclusion of the network from the [press] pool, Psaki writes to LeCompte and fellow White House colleagues, “…brett baier [sic] just did a stupid piece on it -- but he is a lunatic”.
Later on in the email thread Psaki reportedly botches Bret Baier's name yet again, replacing it with “Brett Baer.”
Which begs the questions: shouldn't a WH Communications Director know how to spell; and does Psaki even know who Bret Baier is? It seems not, otherwise she might have a). spelled his name correctly, and b). known that the relatively unoffending Special Report host could hardly be described, perhaps even by critics, as a "lunatic."
In yet another email around the same time, Dag Vega, Director of Broadcast Media at the White House, informed LeCompte “…we’d prefer if you skip Fox please.”
And perhaps most damning of all, Deputy White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest reportedly laid out the White House position on Fox News in a 2009 email to LeCompte in which he said, "We've demonstrated our willingness and ability to exclude Fox News from significant interviews."
But how did all these emails come to light? Apparently Judicial Watch filed a Freedom of Information Act after a controversy over whether Fox's Major Garrett was denied an interview with Kenneth Feinberg, the Obama Administrations "pay czar." So egregious was the denial in fact, that even left-leaning NBC, ABC, CBS and CNN reportedly stood with Fox, refusing an interview with Feinberg if the administration continued its antics.
So there you have it. Is this all taken out of context or are these emails consistent with how the current administration has conducted itself with the media to now?