While he was president, Barack Obama received a barrage of criticisms from conservative media, particularly Fox News, which often disparaged him over the smallest of errors.
Whether he was wearing a tan suit or had a Marine hold an umbrella for him in the rain — situations that presidents before him had done without much fanfare — the network seemed, at times, to have it out for him, many pundits outside of Fox noted.
Now several years out of office, the network still seems to be sloppy when it comes to fact-checking criticisms of the former president. On Wednesday, Fox News reporter Sam Dorman wrote an article that included excerpts from a new book titled “Inside Trump’s White House: The Real Story of His Presidency,” written by conservative author Doug Wead.
Within the book, Wead cited a source within the CIA at the time of the Obama administration. The source complained that they had to spend “a lot of time in the White House doing nonstop PC [political correctness] meetings.”
The words in brackets were Wead’s addition, Business Insider reported. But PC meetings are not about “political correctness” — the term actually refers to the National Security Council’s Principals Committee, which is a “cabinet-level senior interagency forum for considering policy issues that affect the national security interests of the United States,” according to an explainer column in Lawfare from 2017.
Fox News didn’t correct Wead’s quote in the article. In fact, the article itself was based around the incorrect assumption that PC stood for “political correctness.”
The article by Dorman was entitled, “CIA staff complained about Obama White House’s political correctness, new book claims.”
Several national security experts took to social media to point out the huge error. Loren DeJonge Schulman, an adviser to then-National Security Adviser Susan Rice, tweeted out her complaints on the article.
“I am dying. Principals Committee meetings, Fox. Not political correctness meetings!” she wrote.
Fox News issued a retraction on the article, saying that the mistake was due to Wead and his source having a “misunderstanding” about the initials PC. But apparently Dorman was standing by his reporting as late as Wednesday afternoon, evidently defending it by sending profanity-laced emails to reporters from other agencies asking him questions about his reporting.
Unfortunately for Wead, a correction will not be able to be included in his book, which will hit bookstores later this month.
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Chris Walker is a freelance writer based out of Madison, Wisconsin. A millennial with more than a decade of journalism experience, Chris aims to provide readers with the latest and most accurate news of national importance. Chris likes to spend his free time doing activities in his community with his family.