BILL DONOHUE | CNBNEWS CONTRIBUTOR
Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on Fox News and George Soros:
On September 16, Newt Gingrich was cut off the air on a Fox News show, “Outnumbered,” for merely mentioning the role that George Soros is playing in fomenting the anti-cop agenda of the left. Here is what he said.
- “The number one problem in almost all these cities [where riots have taken place] is George Soros-elected left-wing anti-police pro-criminal district attorneys who refuse to keep people locked up.”
- “Progressive district attorneys are anti-police, pro-criminal, and [are] overwhelmingly elected with George Soros’ money.”
Gingrich was interrupted by one of the show’s regulars, Melissa Frances, who said, “I’m not sure we need to bring George Soros into this.” The former Speaker of the House replied, “He paid for it. Why can’t we discuss the fact that millions of dollars ….” Gingrich was then cut off again, this time by Marie Harf who took Frances’ side.
Why is Fox News protecting George Soros? Is there anyone who doubts that he is one of the biggest contributors to left-wing causes in the nation, if not the biggest? We at the Catholic League know the atheist billionaire as the nation’s most generous donor to anti-Catholic causes and organizations.
It seems plain that Frances was told by the show’s producers (in her earpiece) to cut Gingrich off at the knees. She dutifully obliged.
It didn’t take long before left-wing media outlets celebrated what happened. The Daily Beast explained that Soros is “often the focus of anti-Semitic tropes.” HuffPost said, “In some cases, his name has been used to evoke anti-Semitic tropes.”
Maybe Soros has been used this way, and if so, that would be despicable. But neither left-wing website provided any examples. Are we to assume, then, that because some bigots have attacked Soros that no one is allowed to cite his role in promoting the left-wing agenda without being called an anti-Semite? Does this justify trying to censor Newt Gingrich?
Where did Fox News, the Daily Beast, and HuffPost pick up on the talking point that negative comments about Soros can legitimately be construed as anti-Semitic? From the New York Times.
On October 30, 2018, in a front-page story in the New York Times, reporters noted that “baseless claims” that Soros financed illegal border crossings “carry a strong whiff of anti-Semitism.” Two days later, November 1, 2018, another front-page story commented that critics of Soros employ “barely coded anti-Semitism.” On March 11, 2019, reporters commented that critics of Soros have “skated up to the edge of racism and anti-Semitism with no consequences.”
Is it anti-Semitic to criticize George Soros? If so, then the ADL, which was founded to combat anti-Semitism, is anti-Semitic.
On December 5, 2003, ADL national director Abraham Foxman wrote that Soros blamed the current “upsurge of hatred” directed at Jews on Jews. “Not surprisingly,” he wrote, “many Jews are distressed by this tendency, now spilling over to our own community, of blaming Jews for anti-Semitism. That is why I have called Mr. Soros’ comments obscene.”
Would Fox News consider Foxman’s remarks anti-Semitic?
Last year, Fox News host Neil Cavuto interviewed me about the fire that engulfed Notre Dame Cathedral in France. Here is what I said. “Well, Neil, if it is an accident, it’s a monumental tragedy. But forgive me for being suspicious. Just last month, a 17th-century church was set on fire in Paris. We’ve seen tabernacles knocked down, crosses have been torn down, statues.”
That was it—Cavuto had a meltdown and cut me off. “We don’t know that. So if we can avoid what your suspicions might be.”
In short, even speculating about the guilty—even though I did not say a word about religious fanatics—was enough to set off the censors in the control room. So much for my free speech.
It is not just Big Tech that is stifling the free speech of conservatives. It’s executives at Fox News.
Contact Jay Soroko, executive producer of “Outnumbered”: Jay.Soroko@foxnews.com