Manchester, NH—Fox News is coming to the defense of former employee Scott Brown in an obvious attempt to prop up his campaign. Yesterday evening, Fox News ran a "documentary" focusing on the impacts of the ACA on New Hampshire, which was full of partisan rhetoric that echoes Scott Brown's attacks, ignoring the facts and actual reality of what's happening on the ground. It's no coincidence that Fox began production on this piece while Brown was still on their payroll, and while a prominent Fox employee publicly acknowledged a pending Brown Senate bid.
"It's no coincidence that Fox aired a 'documentary' parroting Scott Brown's misleading ACA attacks just three months before Election Day," said New Hampshire Democratic Party Communications Director Julie McClain. "This is a blatant attempt to prop up their former employee's campaign, full of half-truths and misleading rhetoric on the ACA that we've come to expect from people who are dead-set on repealing the law and desperate to get back into the U.S. Senate."
Click here to get the facts on the ACA in New Hampshire.
Special Will Feature The Obamacare Opponent And NH Senate Candidate
An upcoming Fox News special report promises to expose Obamacare problems in New Hampshire, where the network's former contributor Scott Brown is running for U.S. Senate. The special will feature an interview with Brown, who has declared that "Obamacare isn't working" and called the law a "monstrosity."
Airing the night of August 8, "Live Free or Die: Obamacare in New Hampshire" promises to chronicle the effect of the Affordable Care Act on New Hampshire residents, such as a doctor who retired rather than deal with health care reform and a "lesbian [who] opts out of Obamacare, questioning why she should pay for reproductive care she doesn't want or need."
Why the focus on New Hampshire? According to the network, in part because the state is "where this year's election will be key to determining which party controls the Senate." This appears to be the first time Fox has run a special focused on a single state since at least 2012.
Brown himself will participate in the special and promoted it earlier today, tweeting:
Fox is intimately involved with the New Hampshire Senate race, as its former contributor is seeking to unseat incumbent Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen. Brown began teasing his candidacy while still receiving a paycheck from Fox, and recently credited his role on the network with inspiring his campaign for Senate.
From the start, Brown has focused his campaign on his opposition to Obamacare. His website states that the "people of New Hampshire take pride in individual liberty and freedom. Obamacare demolishes both." He went on an "Obamacare isn't Working" tour and has repeatedly criticized his opponent for voting in favor of the law, which he deemed a "monstrosity" in need of repeal.
Yet, when it comes to specifics, Brown has endorsed the extension of coverage to people lacking it or with pre-existing conditions, a paradox many, like Washington Post's Greg Sargent, have criticized as "unsustainable." He's refused to give his opinion on New Hampshire's recent decision to expand Medicaid, a move which grants health coverage to at least 50,000 low-income residents. And when asked for his vision of state-based health care reform to replace the ACA, he's offered solutions that sound an awful lot like the ACA (unsurprisingly, as Brown previously supported Romneycare in Massachusetts).
The approach Fox will take with its report on New Hampshire and Obamacare remains to be seen. But the network has invested a lot in Brown's candidacy, and the special's timing and focus suggest a desperate attempt to save Brown from himself.
In Case You Missed It
SCOTT BROWN DISCUSSES NEW HAMPSHIRE SENATE RACE WITH BRET BAIER
Fox News: Special Report With Bret Baier
July 24, 2014
Concord, NH – Scott Brown’s announcement on WMUR’s CloseUp that he made a decision to run for the Senate on Valentine’s Day—February 14th, 2014 – raises potential legal questions. The revelation on this morning’s program suggests that he decided to run for office a full five days before he renewed his contract with FOX News and continued cashing in on his lucrative deal as a political pundit.
If Brown did in fact make a decision on February 14th, reports also show that he spent almost a full month dishonestly claiming that he had not in fact made a decision, and skirting FEC regulations that would have triggered filing requirements.
“If Scott Brown really decided to run for New Hampshire’s U.S. Senate seat on Valentine’s Day, that means that he spent the next five weeks not being truthful with New Hampshire voters, and possibly skirted FEC regulations,” said New Hampshire Democratic Party Communications Director Julie McClain. “This revelation raises serious questions that Brown must answer—from Day One, Brown hasn’t been straight with the people of New Hampshire, and this latest news suggests that Brown’s self-serving interests could have resulted in the violation of federal regulations. Scott Brown should come clean.”
Below is a timeline of events:
February 14, 2014: Brown decided to run for New Hampshire’s Senate seat on Valentine’s Day [WMUR, 4/27/14]
February 19, 2014: Scott Brown’s contract with Fox News was renewed [Politico, 2/19/14]. And Fox News typically suspends contracts with contributors after they decide to run for office. [Politico, 4/27/14]
March 3, 2014: Brown claimed he “will make a decision in due time.” [Union Leader, 3/3/14]
March 3, 2014: Brown claimed Democratic ads attacking him have made him think about getting in the New Hampshire Senate race [Politico, 3/3/14]
March 3, 2014: Brown told Politico that Democrats “keep running these negative ads and crushing my integrity and distorting my votes and the like — almost antagonizing me, challenging me to get in,’ Brown told POLITICO. ‘Had they left me alone, I may feel a bit different. But they didn’t.’” [Politico, 3/3/14]
March 4, 2014: Greta Van Susteren tweeted that Scott Brown was running in New Hampshire, which Brown immediately called untrue [Politico, 3/4/14]
March 10, 2014: Brown told a guest of his at an upcoming GOP dinner that he was "leaning" towards running. [The Hill, 3/10/14]
March 14, 2014: Brown Launches Senate Bid and his contract with Fox News is terminated. [Washington Post, “Post Politics” Blog, 3/14/14] [Fox News,3/14/14]
March 21, 2014: Brown filed his statement of candidacy with the FEC. [FEC, Scott Brown Statement of Candidacy, Filed 3/21/14]