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Friday, November 04, 2005

How Fox Gets the Exclusives

Early last month, on the first Sunday after his indictment, Fox News Channel managed to keep DeLay from creepily protesting his innocence on competing news outlets long enough to call his Fox News Sunday appearance an "exclusive."

Also exclusive were his travel arrangements. According to a disclosure form filed by DeLay, Fox News Channel paid just under $14,000 for a private jet to take DeLay from Texas to Washington, D.C., and back. That's about half an assistant producer's annual salary, just four days after DeLay appeared on "Hannity & Colmes" and almost any other show that would have him.

But it was clearly money well-spent, just so Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace could actually get DeLay in the studio, look him in the eye, and take his measure. Just for kicks, I went back to look at some of the questions that Wallace grilled him with that day. Here's a Fox News Channel $14,000 interview for you (these are all questions Wallace asked, cherry-picked by me without regard to fairness or balance. In his defense, he also asked some tougher questions, but a softball is a softball is a softball).
Are you done as a major force in Congress?

How quickly do you think you can beat this case?

Will you continue to raise millions of dollars?

Will you continue to help set strategy and push party discipline on the House floor?

So you're going to continue to help run the show in the House even from the wings?

There's been a lot of criticism from supporters and opponents of you that the indictment that Ronnie Earle has presented so far is pretty thin, doesn't state a lot of facts on it.

Any apologies for the way you do business?

Did you really think that Abramoff, who you say was one of your close friends and a big-time lobbyist, who was along on this trip -- did you really believe he had nothing to do with paying for this trip?

Sir, how do you respond to conservatives who say it's time for you to go?

And on a personal level, Tom DeLay will be back?
[via Eric]