October 19, 2015

Fox’s Neil Cavuto responded to the arrest of frequent guest Wayne Simmons, who turned out not to be the former CIA agent he was supposed to be, just how you would hope a news host would handle such a thing.

At the end of his show yesterday, Cavuto took a few moments to comment on Simmons' arrest for fraud:

CAVUTO: Federal prosecutors now claim Wayne Simmons was not a former CIA operative or, for that matter, ever worked at the CIA at all. Now, if it’s true that all our due diligence and vetting on Mr. Simmons missed this, that’s big and that’s on me. And only me.

You as viewers have little reason to be comforted by the excuse that Mr. Simmons might—and I stress might—have fooled many others, including no less than former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.

But the responsibility to check out who comes on this show ultimately lies with me. After all, it’s my Italian name on it. I’m in charge of it. I decide who comes on it. If, in so doing, I wasn’t thorough enough or followed up enough, it’s on me, and I apologize.

You have a right to expect guests who appear here to be who they say they are here. Now, it’s a very rare slip up, but it’s a very big slip up, and I will make doubly sure something like this never ever happens again. I value your trust and I promise, I promise, to work very hard to regain it.

Simmons appeared on many other Fox News shows, not just Cavuto’s. But he is a senior vice president and managing editor so presumably he had some responsibility for Simmons’ appearances beyond just this show. However, Cavuto spoke only about his own show. I’m not aware of any other host apologizing.

Regardless, we spend a lot of time criticizing Fox. When praise is due, we try to give it. So good on ya, Neil Cavuto.

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