Fox News is "operating basically as talk radio," President Barack Obama charged in an interview with NBC News just airing, according to a report in The Hill.
The latest exchange is but the latest installment in a war of words between the cable news channel and the president's aides, who have gone on the record saying that Fox is not a real "news station."
The President made it clear that he agreed with his own people.
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"I think what our advisers have simply said is that we are going to take media as it comes," Obama told NBC's Savannah Guthrie. "And if media is operating basically as a talk radio format then that's one thing, and if it's operating as a news outlet that's another but it's not something I'm losing sleep over."
Obama also told Guthrie, according to a report in USA Today, that the American public isn't interested in the squabble:
"Understandably, since you're in the news business, this is something that you're very interested in," Obama said. "And I think the American people are a lot more interested in what we're doing to create jobs or how we're handling the situation in Afghanistan."
In an opinion piece, Fox News lashed back at the President.
“The unprecedented presidential policy and efforts by the White House to undermine Fox News and legitimate critics of the president and his administration are dangerous and unsettling.
“President Obama had a chance last night in an interview with NBC News to distance himself from this controversy. He was asked about the policy of taking on Fox and he dug in. He gave his stamp of approval to taking on a major news network, marginalizing their work and limiting access to him and his administration.
“For a president of the United States to lower himself and his high office to the level of an FCC Commissioner is very strange indeed. The president said the following, ‘if media is operating basically, as a talk radio format, then that’s one thing. And if its operating as a news outlet that’s another . . .’
“Every major cable and broadcast news channel operates as both at different times of their broadcast day. Clearly the public is smart enough to know the difference between news and opinion programming. Why then pick on Fox?”
Over the weekend, White House Senior Adviser David Axelrod said that Fox is "not really a news station." Similar comments were made by White House Communications Director Anita Dunn and White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel.
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