Megyn Kelly, New Black Panther Party Chairman Talk Conspiracy, Race, Jews

FNC’s Megyn Kelly spoke to New Black Panther Party Chairman Malik Zulu Shabazz today in a lengthy, two-part interview that featured moments of tension, a lot of broad questions and very few specific answers.

Kelly has been driving the DOJ/Black Panthers story for a couple weeks, and this was the first showdown with a representative of the organization.

During Tommy Christopher’s exclusive interview with Shabazz earlier in the week, Shabazz expressed doubts over whether he’d be a guest on any show because of, maybe, a “Zionist conspiracy.”

The first part of the interview dealt mostly with the DOJ case and why it was dropped. This transitioned to Kelly’s questions about Shabazz’s 2008 election directives. “Didn’t you order them to go, saying, they needed ‘to stop angry whites’ and use ‘all means at your disposal’?” she asked.

Without saying yes or no, Shabazz gave his reason for, what sounded like, doing just that. But when Kelly asked again, he said, “No, ma’am you’re mischaracterizing what I said.”

Then it came time for the whole general ‘are you racist’ discussion. First, Shabazz talked about the conspiracy he’s up against:

All of this, to me ma’am, is being over-hyped and overblown and is part of a right-wing Republican conspiracy to demonize Pres. Obama, his administration, to demonize the New Black Panther Party and blacks, in order to drum up white dissatisfied support for the midterm elections. I see the strategy behind Attorney Adams, behind Glenn Beck behind Sean Hannity

Kelly asked Shabazz, “Do you hate white people?” No. “Have you ever referred to a white person as a cracker?” “It’s possible,” said Shabazz. “Do you hate Jews?” No. “Have you ever referred to Jews as something other than Jews?” “Not the real Jews, no ma’am,” said Shabazz.

There’s a lot of that. But if there’s anything we can say was learned from this interview, it’s that Shabazz said he doesn’t think the New Black Panther Party will be showing up at the polls in 2010 or 2012.

Here’s the full interview:

Also, we got a shout-out today from Kelly for Chistopher’s question at about the DOJ case earlier this week:

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Shep Smith Mocks Foxnews.com: ‘Like Running Through A Maze Blindfolded’

Slow news day? You betcha! But here’s a fun and whimsical clip that highlights the uncanny snark of Fox News host Shepard Smith. Yesterday we posted a clip of a tense back and forth between Smith and Micahel Lohan (which lead the latter to utter the ‘f-bomb.’) On today’s episode of Studio B, Shep was teasing the full clip on FoxNews.com and revealed that he might not love the navigation of the site.

Fox News Had More Viewers In Prime Time Last Week Than CNN + MSNBC + HLN

We’ve laid out the cable news ratings equation several times, but usually we just compared Fox News to CNN and MSNBC.

Well last week in prime time, FNC had more total viewers than CNN, MSNBC and HLN combined. Here are the details:

FNC was 3rd in prime time, with 1,752,000 viewers. MSNBC was 26th, CNN 30th and HLN 33rd for a total of 1,735,000 viewers.

Overall, USA Network was #1 with TNT #2. Here’s the full list:

- CHECK OUT THE TOTAL DAY RANKER HERE.

Bill O’Reilly And Guest: Success Of Fox News Has ‘Pushed Mainstream News Further Left’

Bill O’Reilly spoke about media coverage last night on The O’Reilly Factor, and specifically exasperated why the major network news outlets were ignoring the “New Black Panther” controversy that is getting so much play on Fox News. In the eyes his guest Byron York, “the continued success of Fox…conservative talk radio, and of conservative sites on the internet have actually pushed the so-called mainstream media a little farther to the left than they were before.”

York is the Chief Political Correspondent for the Washington Examiner, and contributor to Fox News. He explained to O’Reilly what he saw as reasons why the mainstream media have ignored the Black Panther whistleblower story. What they neglect to discuss is how O’Reilly had misreported this very story the previous night.

As Tommy Christopher reported yesterday “O’Reilly gets a bunch of things wrong in his segment, not only calling for the Obama DOJ to prosecute someone who has already been prosecuted, but stating repeatedly that there were 3 New Black Panthers at the Philadelphia polling place.” O’Reilly had also erroneously claimed that the Justice Department had provide no clear rationale for dismissing charges against the Black Panther Party, when the lawyers for the DOJ Civil Rights Division drafted a detailed memo outlining the legal basis for the dismissals.

Throughout this, and other segments, O’Reilly runs footage of a member of a Black Panther King Samir looming outside of a Philadelphia polling place. Perhaps he should heed his own advice of three years ago, when he admonished directors of the documentary Jesus Camp for exploiting the bizarre acts of extremists to make a political point, saying “anyone can do that, and it proves nothing. I could film militant secular progressives in S&M bars all night long. What does that prove? There will always be people on the fringe.”

A rough transcript of the exchange follow the video clip below.


O’Reilly: In the Impact Segment tonight, this should come as no surprise when the head of Nasa said that part of his job is reaching out to the Muslim world, the story was ignored by the network news. Also the black panther election controversy total blackout on the nightly news broadcast. Joining us now from Washington, Byron York, chief political correspondent for The Washington Examiner. Byron, I didn’t cover the Nasa story either although the fox news hard news people did obviously. Should I have covered it.

York: The Factor is just one show on Fox, and there was a significant amount of coverage on Fox. So if you watch the network for any period of time you would know about the story. contrast that to readers of the New York Times, readers of the The Washington Post, and viewers of the broadcast network newscast. If you depended on them for your news and a lot of people do, you would literally not know that this had happened. that’s a lot different.

O’Reilly: Okay. the reason I didn’t cover it is I have a problem with it. You know, if the head of Nasa or the head of any other government agency wan to try to make friends with the Muslim world, that’s fine with me. I don’t think that’s a bad thing at all as long as they don’t do anything stupid or compromise themselves in any way or insult people, victims of 9/11, their families. If he wants to make overtures to the Muslim world about science and things like that, I don’t have a problem. So I didn’t cover it. But, far more important is the blackout of the back panther story which has now reached up into subpoena level with the human rights commission. And this is stunning when you have the three network newscasts ignoring this story with all of the provocative sound, with all of the testimony by Mr. Christian in front of the committee, and you have Couric and Williams and Diane Sawyer basically saying, hey, we have got more important things to do than tell you about this unbelievable controversy. I don’t get this at all. Why do you think they ignored it?

York: Well, let me tell you why I think this is happening. I think the continued success of Fox, the continued success of conservative talk radio, and of conservative sites on the Internet have actually pushed the so-called mainstream media a little farther to the left than they were before. And this is how it happens. In a story like Van Jones or like the new black panthers or about the Nasa Muslim outreach story, when you have outlets on the right and they consider Fox News to be right wing, covering these things, they begin to see their role as a corrective, as a counter weight to that information. So, one of the ways they handled that is just simply to ignore it and as a matter of fact in the Van Jones matter they didn’t report the story until after Jones had resigned. So I think there is a growing sense among people at the network newscasts, at The Washington Post,, at the New York Times, that they function as kind of a counter balance to what they sees a right wing misinformation out there. And that’s why i think you see him behaving this way.

O’Reilly: The network news has lost another million viewers. You know, they are going down the tubes. There is no doubt that they are. The New York Times. Big, big trouble. The Washington Post, you know, Newsweek is out. It’s gone. So you are telling me that because of Fox News’ success, they have to ignore stories that might attract viewers. This black panther story is a very interesting story with a lot of aspect to it. You are telling me that they are going to give up readers and viewers because they don’t like what fox news does?

York: I think that’s exactly what’s happening.

Bill O’Reilly & The Culture Warriors Debate The Threat Of Twilight’s Teen Vampires

The O’Reilly Factor Culture Warriors are assigned to two things: policing the American pop culture scene and keeping Bill O’Reilly hip on what all the cool kids are into these days. So, really, it was inevitable that they would have to explain to O’Reilly what Twilight is, and why there have been incidences of young teens trying to suck each other’s blood in the news.

O’Reilly picks up on the Twilight theme quickly–”They’re cool, they’re young, they’re chic vampires”– but they are presenting an eminent threat to America’s youth, as they are now all, apparently, trying to be the story’s lead, Edward. Plus, there is a legitimate concern about the spread of disease with teenagers drinking blood for the sake of a fad. While Gretchen Carlson had a few misgivings about letting her young children watch the movies, but Margaret Hoover was not overly worried with the trend. Hoover took the opportunity to reminisce about Angelina Jolie’s strange blood rituals with Billy Bob Thornton and arguing that “there is teenage fringe behavior that transcends the era.” Plus, like, Edward’s “whole thing is that he doesn’t bite humans,” so anyone who is trying to bite their peers can’t possibly be a real Twihard, duh.

The segment from tonight’s Factor below:

Glenn Beck Challenges Robert Gibbs (And Mediaite) On Health Care Chief’s ‘Redistribution’ Comments

During yesterday’s White House press briefing, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs and CNS reporter Frank Lucas had a testy exchange over comments by new recess appointment, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services head Donald Berwick– an exchange with Glenn Beck saw as exemplary of the type of “you attack, you marginalize, you mock” strategy Gibbs, in his eyes, has perfected. Beck took Gibbs to task for dodging the question, and had a few words for some of us in the media, too.

Most of Beck’s disapproval this time around is for Gibbs. Berwick, despite his position at the center of the story, seems to be to Beck an almost dispensible figure in the long line of questionable Obama administration appointments– “another Van Jones.” Gibbs, however, was effectively dodging, ridiculing, and bullfighting the media out of honing in on Berwick’s “solid anti-capitalist ideology.” Beck mocks Gibbs’ “secret comment book” remark– “there’s this thing called the television”– and argues that “the fact that Congressman Ryan said something similar doesn’t make it ok.” Lucas had answered in the affirmative when Gibbs asked him whether a quote by Rep. Paul Ryan was by Berwick.

To prove that Gibbs’ tactic was working and the media was not focusing on the Berwick story, Beck cited this quote from our article on the exchange with Lucas:

“The lesson? Robert Gibbs won’t entertain baseless questions from reporters who haven’t done their homework. And when he does, he makes enough of an example out of them to keep the rest of the Press Corps on their toes.”

Beck argues that this is symptomatic of the entire media’s aversion to taking “the ever-glib Gibbs” to task for deflecting questions, and, given that Berwick did make questionable comments about redistribution of wealth, calling Lucas’ question “baseless” and saying Lucas hadn’t done his homework was not entirely fair.

Well, first thing’s first: thanks for reading, Glenn! We will gladly assume the perils of counting Glenn Beck among your readers (they aren’t much different from the perils of counting Mediaite among your viewers).

Now to the heart of the matter. He has a fair point inasmuch as Lucas’ first question was about comments that were well-documented. But honest mistake or not, indicating that a quote by one person is actually by another– in the kind of rapid-fire political battle that Lucas initiated with Gibbs? It’s an instant game-over. It shows that, at the very least, Lucas hadn’t thought critically enough about Berwick’s quote not to confuse it with something a Republican congressman had said.

This, of course, is an entirely separate issue from the appropriateness of Berwick’s beliefs, which Beck perceives as without a doubt lacking, and whether Gibbs is a “smug, condescending jerk” (which, to his credit, Beck notes is a title many have handed to him during his time in the limelight). We’ll leave both of those conclusions up to you.

Video from today’s entertaining Glenn Beck below:

HLN’s Jane Velez-Mitchell Had Top Non-FNC Show Among Younger Viewers Tuesday

Cable news ratings, July 6, 2010: Check out the highlights, and see the full ratings below:

• The top non-FNC show in the A25-54 demographic on Tuesday night? HLN’s Issues with Jane Velez-Mitchell at 7pmET. A rare victory in the (admittedly-made-up-since-it’s-excluding-FNC) category for the show. What was the big story? Lindsay Lohan.

• The top cable news show was Bill O’Reilly’s, with Sean Hannity #2

TV NEWS RATINGS: 25-54 DEMOGRAPHIC (L +SD)
Fox News CNN MSNBC CNN Headline News
5 pm

Beck

433

Blitzer

176

Matthews

107

Showbiz

175

6 pm

Baier

315

Blitzer

155

Ed Show

161

Prime

273

7 pm

Shep

380

King, USA

134

Matthews

189

Issues

295

8 pm

O’Reilly

678

Brown

119

Olbermann

283

Grace

272

9 pm

Hannity

510

King

227

Maddow

269

Behar

159

10 pm

Greta

408

Cooper

165

Olbermann

218

Grace

190

11 pm

O’Reilly

447

Cooper

179

Maddow

147

Showbiz

125

TOTAL DAY 271 131 150 158
PRIME TIME 532 170 257 203
Data by Nielsen Media Research. Live and same day (DVR) data.
TV NEWS RATINGS: TOTAL VIEWERS (L +SD)
Fox News CNN MSNBC CNN Headline News
5 pm

Beck

1894

Blitzer

579

Matthews

533

Showbiz

357

6 pm

Baier

1851

Blitzer

486

Ed Show

665

Prime

552

7 pm

Shep

1584

King, USA

413

Matthews

641

Issues

744

8 pm

O’Reilly

2869

Brown

492

Olbermann

1107

Grace

920

9 pm

Hannity

1980

King

847

Maddow

904

Behar

567

10 pm

Greta

1643

Cooper

572

Olbermann

686

Grace

456

11 pm

O’Reilly

1432

Cooper

450

Maddow

419

Showbiz

356

TOTAL DAY 1104 422 450 358
PRIME TIME 2164 637 899 639
Data by Nielsen Media Research. Live and same day (DVR) data.