Peter Doocy of FOX News Reanimates the Old 'Deplorables' Smear Against Hillary Clinton
Everything old is new again. Particularly on Fox News where each election cycle sees reprisals of their classic Democratic tropes: Migrant caravans, War On Christmas, rampant crime, white replacement, etc. ad nauseum.
On Fox News Tuesday night their White House correspondent, Peter Doocy, trotted out a stale attack line from 2016 that Fox used extensively to malign Hillary Clinton. Doocy referenced Clinton’s remarks about “deplorables” that she made when running against Donald Trump. Doocy’s excuse for bringing it up was a severely shortened clip of Clinton being interviewed Tuesday by Joy Reid on MSNBC. Naturally, Doocy misrepresented what Clinton said on both occasions:
Doocy: Hillary Clinton is doing the TV rounds for Democratic candidates as well. And in an interview now she is suggesting that she thinks that the only people that are voting Republican this cycle are ones that are not smart enough to understand the issues.
Clinton: I’m not sure they really understand the threats to their way of life.
Doocy: That is in line for the costly comments she made in 2016 when she referred to people moved to back Donald Trump as quote “a basket of deplorables.”
New "Deplorables" just dropped. pic.twitter.com/4kZpSD8ZOR
— Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) November 2, 2022
First of all, Clinton never said anything about Republican voters not being “smart” enough. She a made perfectly reasonable observation that some of them might not fully understand what is at stake in this midterm election. That includes the stated Republican agenda of criminalizing reproductive choice, gutting Social Security, suppressing the vote, and sabotaging the economy.
In order to make his point, Doocy had to slice a single sentence from Clinton’s interview that he could purposefully distort. Here is what Doocy and Fox News left out…
“They may think that whoever is chairing a committee is kind of abstract. But Republicans in the House and others, like the chair of the Republican Senate Campaign Committee (Rick Scott), are on record saying that they are going to put Social Security and Medicare up for a vote.”
Clinton went on to say that she doesn’t understand why Americans “are not up in arms” about the “reckless behavior” that the GOP has promised to take, adding that…
“Sometimes when I tell people that, they say ‘Oh, they would never do that.’ Well, they told us for fifty years that they were going to get rid of Roe v Wade and turn abortion over to the states where state legislators and local political officials can decide what your healthcare would be. Why wouldn’t you believe them that they are going to go after Social Security and Medicare? I believe them. I take them at their word.”
Clinton may be overstating her inclination take to take Republicans at their word. She is unarguably right in this context. However, the GOP is a notoriously dishonest party who lie relentlessly about their record and about Democrats.
The subject of “deplorables” is a perfect example of Republican lying. Clinton never tagged all GOP voters with that label. She was referring only to the most extreme Trumpists. In fact, she explicitly narrowed her remarks saying that “you can put half of Trump supporters into what I call the ‘basket of deplorables.’” But Doocy is, once again, distorting what Clinton actually said. Maybe he should pay more attention to the manifestly deplorable things that Republicans are saying, and that Clinton got 100% right.
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