Democratic presidential hopeful Beto O’Rourke, speaking at a rally in San Francisco, California, over the weekend, suggested that the ties between Fox News and President Donald Trump were disturbingly too close for comfort.
The president’s watching habits have been well-documented since he came into office, with many observers noting his tweets seem to align directly at times with what’s just been stated on the network.
O’Rourke chastised the close relationship Trump has with Fox during his rally.
“You have members of the organization moving into the White House, you have a White House with free rein, almost, over what is broadcast over one of the most widely watched cable networks in the country today,” O’Rourke said, per reporting from Reuters.
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) April 28, 2019
Fox’s dedication to Trump is strong, and notably intertwined with his administration. The president regularly discusses policy with pundit Sean Hannity, and Hannity even spoke during a Trump rally within the past year. Former Fox News executive Bill Shine also served in the Trump communications team for a short while, resigning earlier this year to join the president’s re-election campaign.
Many other former Fox News personalities have served or are currently part of the Trump White House, according to reporting from CBS News.
For some, the connection between the news network and Trump is crossing the line. In an interview with Vox, Tom Rosenstiel, executive director at the American Press Institute, agreed with what many before him have previously opined — that “there are parts of Fox News that are now a propaganda arm of the government.”
Rosenstiel added that “[b]oth sides are working with each other” to promote the administration’s interests, and that the two regularly “coordinate [their] battle plans” with one another.
In addition to the network’s close ties to Trump, O’Rourke also blasted the administration for having a chummy relationship with Russia during the 2016 campaign.
“I don’t know if collusion is a term of art in the law, but he certainly invited their participation,” O’Rourke said of Russia’s involvement in the election.
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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.