May 17, 2015

I keep waiting for the lightning strike any time I hear these talking heads on Fox complain about someone on another network being "biased." From the yappers on the GOP TV propaganda network, with more conflicts of interest than most people have time to try to keep track of, here's the whining the audience of this weekend's Fox News Sunday were treated to.

WALLACE: All right. There was another big political story this week, and I want to ask you about it, Brit, and that is the revelation that our colleague George Stephanopoulos at ABC News had over the years contributed $75,000 to the Clinton Foundation and that he didn't disclose that fact even when he was covering the current controversy about the foundation. On Friday he apologized.


GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS, HOST, "THIS WEEK": I should have gone the extra mile to avoid even the appearance of a conflict. I apologize to all of you for failing to do that.


WALLACE: Brit, you were the former boss here, the managing editor in the Washington bureau. What do you think of what he did? And how would you have reacted as a boss if somebody here in the bureau did that?

HUME: Well, I also covered the Clinton White House when he was press secretary and it was pretty clear to me, when he came out of that job, went to work for ABC, look, with the business we're in, there is not a priest to it. It's perfectly possible for somebody to make the transition from politics to journalism. But if there's one thing he needed to do in doing that was to sever any real or apparent ties with the Clintons. Contributing to their foundation is one thing. And now it also turns out that he participated in panels and other events connected to the Clinton global initiative. It is a mistake to do that. You want to be seen as independent. And if there's anybody in the world that you want to seem independent from it's the Clintons. So, that's the mistake. The apology is fine. I give him credit for making it. I like George. I think by and large he's done a good job of being even-handed in his work. But this was -- this is a mistake and I'm not sure it's going to -- he'll recover from it any time soon.

WALLACE: How do you feel about the failure to disclose to the viewers?

HUME: Well, that's a similar mistake. You -- you know, think of all the times when, say, Nina Easton, whose husband is a political consultant, has been on these panels here at Fox News.

WALLACE: Particularly when he was involved in the Romney campaign.

HUME: Right. And she would always say, full disclosure, my husband works for the Romney campaign. That gives the viewers a chance to sift what she's heard. That's the way to handle it. He didn't do that.

That list is a whole lot longer than just Nina Easton Brit, like say, the guy sitting right there next to you. Oh look, it's Karl Rove, who the network never bothers to reveal is running a political PAC, Crossroads GPS.

Let's see what he thinks about all of this.

WALLACE: Karl, last word.

ROVE: Look, I like George, too. But this was a huge mistake, it was a half-hearted apology. I want to go the extra mile. Well, I don't think he went an inch, let alone a mile to begin with. I mean he did nothing to make his conflict known. Secondly, he said, I wanted -- I did this because I wanted to help children, fight AIDS and help the environment. Well, look, give money to Bono's organization, if you want to fight AIDS, give money to Save the Children. Pick one of a dozen different environmental ...

WALLACE: How many of the -- one quick thing, because we're really running out of time here. I've taken some criticism this week because we have you on this show in 2014, and you were talking about Senate races and you're involved in Senate races.

ROVE: And I made those -- I would talk about that. In fact, full disclosure, I've contributed to the Bush presidential library. There's no foundation engaged to supporting his lifestyle, but I've given to the Bush presidential library. But I'm not a journalist. I'm a pundit. I'm a commentator, I'm somebody with an opinion, George ...

HUME: Pundits are journalists, too.

ROVE: Well, exactly.

HUME: You write a column, right?

ROVE: Exactly.

HUME: A newspaper columnist?

ROVE: But nobody -- but I'm not trying to make the transition that George did, like before him Tim Russert. Tim Russert did a magnificent job of moving from a Democrat operative into a bipartisan, nonpartisan host of a Sunday morning talk program, and George was doing the same. And this has tarnished what he's done for 16 years.

No Brit, they're not, nor should anything that goes on at your network ever be called "journalism." And as Driftglass already discussed here, there are real issues with ABC's This Week, but it's not donations to the Clinton Foundation. It's the fact that they've been doing their best to become Fox-lite.

Karl Rove epitomizes everything that's wrong with our political system today. He and his ilk are our problem, not someone giving money to charity.

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