Last month the White House went after Fox News and declared that
it wasn't a news organization. What if the Obama administration
has the wrong stategy? Perhaps, it should encourage some of
what is going on Fox News instead of trying to marginalize the network.
Let me explain.
Yes, some of the commentators on Fox News ferociously attack
President Obama. However, one of Obama's loudest critics on
Fox News, Glenn Beck, bashes both both parties. He has a Ross
Perot populist streak to him. Beck backed Doug Hoffman, a third
party conservative candidate who ended up losing. Encouraging a
third party movement isn't going to help anyone but the Democrats.
And if President Obama's approving ratings keep going down he
might need a third party candidate to spoil the party. Glenn Beck
and some of Fox News' more libertarian commentators will proudly
cheer and give ample air time to the third party candidates.
Another commentator on Fox News, Bill O'Reilly, has been insistent
on making sure his audience knows he's an "independent." Not a
conservative or liberal. Not a Republican or Democrat. Anyone
who watches his show knows he holds some social conservative
positions. For example, he's pro-life. However, he doesn't want to
be labeled as a conservative. While O'Reilly is not like Beck actively
encouraging third party candidates, he sure is encouraging the
"independent" label. What he is saying is that one can be right of
center and not be beholden to the conservative or Republican
label. I'm sure many of the people who voted for President Obama
are people who politically right of center but wanted "change."
Fox News also frequently gives voice to libertarian critiques of
the Republican Party. Congressman Ron Paul and Judge Napolitano
are frequent guests on Fox News programs. If anything this helps
the Democrats because it highlights a political party in disunity.
So ultimately Fox News might actually help President Obama and
the Democrats, not hurt them.