The Full Crowley

In the second presidential election debate between President Barack Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney on October 16, 2012, CNN moderator Candy Crowley sensed that Obama, coming off a dismal initial September 26 debate, was again floundering. 

Romney was driving home the valid point that the Obama Administration had inadequately prepared the American mission in Benghazi for likely terrorist attacks. And such laxity resulted in a horrific attack and the deaths of four Americans, including the U.S. ambassador. 

Yet in the wake of the attacks, Team Obama denied that the killing of four Americans was indeed an act of terror. Instead, it fed the public a transparently but politically correct false narrative of a spontaneous riot in reaction to a video posted by a purported right-wing Egyptian residing on American soil. 

Yet in the debate, Obama retorted: “The day after the attack, governor, I stood in the Rose Garden and I told the American people and the world that we are going to find out exactly what happened. That this was an act of terror and I also said that we’re going to hunt down those who committed this crime.” 

Romney pounced: “You said in the Rose Garden the day after the attack it was an act of terror? It was not a spontaneous demonstration—is that what you’re saying? I want to make sure we get that for the record because it took the president 14 days before he called the attack in Benghazi an act of terror.”  

Romney was correct. Obama took two weeks before he eventually jettisoned his administration’s concocted “spontaneous demonstrations” party line that his subordinates—Susan Rice in particular, to her eternal embarrassment—had been peddling to the American people. 

Yet in the debate, Obama flailed with a weak, “Get the transcript.” 

In truth, Obama in his comments after the attack had simply offered, “No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character, or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for”—a deliberate effort not to name Benghazi specifically in the context of a terrorist act.  

Obama did not, as he was finally forced to do two weeks later, tie specifically the Benghazi deaths to the premeditated attacks of radical Islamic terrorists. No matter. Moderator Crowley jumped in with her instant fact-check: “He did, in fact, sir. So, let me—let me call it an act of terror.” 

Obama was delighted for the reprieve and wagged with delight at the coming out of his debate partner, “Can you say that a little louder, Candy?” On cue, she obsequiously complied, “He did call it an act of terror.”  

In other words, Crowley became a real-time, partisan fact-checker, rather than a moderator—but of a peculiar sort that did not fully assume her new role until Obama himself was desperate for a bailout.   

Crowley’s crazy logic apparently was that Obama really had meant Benghazi when he deliberately talked only in vague terms about generic acts of terror shortly after the attack, but then for the next two weeks nonetheless had allowed his subordinates to float the trial balloon of an alternate reality video, before giving it up when the evidence made peddling that fiction impossible. 

For much of the debate, Crowley had further tried to massage a comeback for Obama after his disastrous first outing. She cut Romney off far more frequently than she did Obama. She alone had picked the townhall questioners. 

And the questions they posed were mostly asymmetrical, such as the following one addressed to Romney: “I do attribute much of America’s economic and international problems to the failings and missteps of the Bush Administration. Since both of you are Republicans, I fear the return to the policies of those years should you win this election. What is the biggest difference between you and George W. Bush, and how do you differentiate yourself from George W. Bush?” 

In the debate’s aftermath, Obama supporters crowed; Romney sulked that Crowley had hijacked the debate. And Crowley was never asked to moderate anything important again. 

CNN offered various defenses. But, in fact, Crowley’s career more or less ended that night and two years later she went into retirement, her finale forever a reminder of what not to do as a debate moderator and an example of media bias. 

Why Not Lose Nobly? 

Something similar occurred with Fox News moderator Chris Wallace in the first debate between Donald Trump and Joe Biden. 

Like Crowley, he lost control of the debate. And similarly, much of the crosstalk grew out of Wallace’s asymmetrical “prove you are not guilty” questioning. 

Wallace’s gotcha technique was to spur the candidates with a “scandal” question to rev them up, and then after two minutes, abruptly and vainly try to cut them off—as if to spur and whip a bronco and then demand on command that the infuriated horse stop his obnoxious bucking. 

Trump, in the manner of Mitt Romney in 2012, was the more frequent debate interrupter, furious likewise about the similar imbalance of both the questions and the moderator’s call for order. For much of the night, Wallace grimaced as he asked Biden to explain a few misdemeanors while demanding Trump defend his presumed felonies. 

And Wallace seemed stunned that Trump did not conduct himself as Romney had in 2012 with Crowley—like a philosophical pilot muttering “such is life,” as his sabotaged and powerless plane nose-dived into the oblivion below. 

Financial scandals? Wallace zeroed in on the Trump tax returns, the media scandal du jour—without a word about Hunter Biden’s also breaking story of pocketing $3.5 million from the wife of the ex-mayor of Moscow even as his father was vice president. Could he not have at least mentioned such “Russian collusion”? 

Race? It was not surprising that Wallace did not ask Biden why he has a habitual habit of denigrating blacks, with his riffs like “you ain’t’ black,” “junkie,” and the Corn Pop yarns. Instead, Wallace went back decades to an obscure  Biden “predator” quote and then did not press Biden much when he simply stonewalled. 

When Wallace, learning and forgetting nothing, turned to Trump on race, he dug up his own old 2016 debate question. And again, Wallace deliberately edited the Charlottesville quote by truncating Trump’s explicit condemnation of white supremacists and Klansmen. Wallace, for the nth time, was trying to force Trump to confess that he condemns white supremacists, in always a new way different from the various times Trump had done so in the past—reminding us that Wallace’s aim was not to find the answer but to continue to raise the question. 

One might suggest Wallace was going the full “when did you stop beating your wife” routine—except our corrupt media had already ruined that old trope, by actually previously suggesting in June 2018 that the first lady may have been tardy in returning to work after an operation, in order to hide bruises from her abusive presidential husband. 

When Wallace turned on Trump on the matter of honoring the verdict of the election, he honed in again on Trump’s past worries and statements about voter fraud and irregularities endangering the sanctity of the voter. 

Fine. But the obvious parallel question to Biden was to ask what he was doing in the Oval Office when, in January 2017, the Obama Administration plotted to take out the national security advisor designate? If Wallace was worried about honoring the protocols of elections and transfer of power, then surely he might have asked Biden why, on his vice-presidential watch, were the FBI, Justice Department, and CIA weaponized and used to spread the fraudulent Steele dossier (paid for by Hillary Clinton and now known to have been mostly fantasies, cooked up by the huckster Steele drawing on a Russian operative working at the liberal Brookings Institution), to destroy a campaign, a transition, and a president? 

Instead, silence. 

But if Romney chattered in crosstalk as Crowley indulged Obama, Trump, as his way, thundered at Wallace’s similar indulgence of Biden. A miffed Romney went out quietly, an enraged Trump roared and stayed put. 

Outfoxed 

The other day at a press conference, another Fox reporter, White House correspondent John Roberts, let loose with yet another demand that Trump condemn white supremacy—the domestic twin to the monotonous Russian collusion hoax questioning. 

Roberts insisted that Trump provide a “definitive and unambiguous” denunciation for the thousandth time, as if observers were ignorant that continually asking the same question after receiving answers deemed unwelcome is not about discovering the truth, but virtue-signaling the smearing, as in, “Will you finally assert that you are not now and never have been a Communist?” 

The more Trump hammers Putin—more sanctions, deadly weapons sent to Ukraine, Russian mercenaries killed in Syria, beefed-up NATO and Pentagon budgets, cheap U.S. oil crashing Russia’s main source of revenue, damning the German-Russian pipeline, getting out of ossified missile treaties, and the more Trump is exonerated by the inspector general, congressional inquiries, and the Mueller report—the more he is accused of Putin collusion. 

So too, the more Trump denies he is a white supremacist, and the more his economic agenda is geared to offering minorities economic empowerment, fair drug sentencing, inner-city charter schools and help for black colleges, the more virulent the supremacist questioning. The obvious psychological diagnosis is that those who once canonized Obama’s Russian reset or said nothing as Biden talked down to and insulted blacks, the more they project these pathologies onto Trump. 

Roberts droned on like a North Korean reeducation camp inquisitor, rephrasing ad nauseam the same demand for a false confession. In answering, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnaney blew him out of the water. Unlike Roberts, she came equipped with all sorts of citations not just noting Trump’s prior denunciations of supremacists, but by doing so in such detail to reveal Roberts’ own obsessions. 

Afterward, there were natural social media push backs against Roberts, and in response he melted down on live TV, snapping, “For all of you on Twitter who are hammering me for asking the question, I don’t care. Stop deflecting. Stop blaming the media. I’m tired of it.”  Was that the news? 

A crusading journalist grows tired of that tiny pushback? Roberts apparently is unable to endure a fraction of the bothersome questioning of motives that he so doggedly has imputed to others. 

Roberts is a distinguished journalist. But he will now be mostly remembered for his press conference puerile petulance and later meltdown. His hysterias reflect only agendas, not a desire for truth. He likes hitting others but has a glass jaw. And he offers a reminder to us that the beltway gotcha media is narcissistic, adolescent, and incestuous. Who could trust such people to report the news dispassionately? 

Media Medical Madness 

When Trump was diagnosed with COVID-19, the media went berserk with all sorts of unhinged themes: did not Trump deserve the infection due to his recklessness (as if the 210,000 dead or CNN’s Chris Cuomo earned by their recklessness their infections, too?) Would not the virus make Trump now eat crow? Would he step down? Would he bow out of the debate? Was the confirmation hearing for Amy Coney Barrett over before it could even begin? 

Amid that hysteria, what was Wallace’s post facto reaction to his moderator’s role at the debate? 

He blamed Trump alone for the melee, never reexamined his own asymmetrical questioning, and seemed incapable of self-examination of his Crowley-like passive-aggressive performance. 

Just hours after Trump had tested positive for COVID-19, a now-Dr. Wallace went on a tear, diagnosing about why and how Trump was infected—without any iota of information about the severity of the infection, its prognosis, or how exactly a number of officials, many at the Amy Coney Barrett open-air White House reception, seem likewise later to have become sickened, masks or no masks.

In animated tones (“Wear the damn mask!”) an increasingly flustered Wallace variously blamed, in unhinged Don Lemon-fashion, Trump’s infection on his own laxity in not always wearing a mask. He insinuated that the White House might not be forthcoming with accurate news. He castigated White House advisor Scott Atlas as incompetent on grounds he lacked a specialization in epidemiology.  

In other words, with no information, no facts, and no expertise, Dr. Wallace was now judge, jury, and executioner pontificating about why the president was singularly culpable for his own medical fate—apparently unlike the similarly infected millions worldwide, and the thousands of local, state, and federal government officials who have been sickened, including many senators and over a dozen congressional representatives. Did they all meet their fates because, on occasion, they brought it on themselves by not wearing a mask? Or were they without masks because they saw Trump sometimes on TV without one?

When, after a poor public performance that has lasting consequences, a marquee journalist hits the airways to perform an encore performance of errors, to meltdown childishly, to replay his prior blunders in self-interested fashion, and to protest the unfairness of his self-created debacle, and by his continued obsessions proves that indeed his critics are correct that he is obsessed, then he has gone the full Crowley—with all that such a fate entails.

Whether these journalists know it or not, in the American mind they are already retired before they have even retired.

About Victor Davis Hanson

Victor Davis Hanson is a distinguished fellow of the Center for American Greatness and the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. He is an American military historian, columnist, a former classics professor, and scholar of ancient warfare. He has been a visiting professor at Hillsdale College since 2004. Hanson was awarded the National Humanities Medal in 2007 by President George W. Bush. Hanson is also a farmer (growing raisin grapes on a family farm in Selma, California) and a critic of social trends related to farming and agrarianism. He is the author most recently of The Second World Wars: How the First Global Conflict Was Fought and Won and The Case for Trump.

Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

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189 responses to “The Full Crowley”

  1. Thank you VDH! Another great column by a great historian and writer!

    • “the beltway gotcha media is narcissistic, adolescent, and incestuous. Who could trust such people to report the news dispassionately”

      You got that right

    • Look, I don’t care about team blue (or team red for that matter) I am for team red white and blue. But this was ten years ago: “No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character, or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for”

      Moreover, it seems like it is being called an act of terror. Why ate we choosing as a country to self-implode merely for the sake of partisanship?

      Hanson is no worse than putin or xi.. But if I were a member of the CPC (or kgb) I would be delighted…

    • Your analysis is always so on point and uncomplicated. Thank you for translating the ever increasing double speak

    • I have two words for Chrissy the hissy fit Wallace…Megyn Kelly. No one cares about her anymore because she overstepped her bounds. Wallace and Roberts are next.

    • All these Washington reporters are closet liberals as is all mainstream media. Fox just makes big bucks on its opinion programs. Why kill the golden calf of cash. I imagine if Fox got rid of its nightly line up some new network would appear And scoop them up.

    • Victor Davis Hanson is an American military historian, columnist, former classics professor, and scholar of ancient warfare. He was a professor of classics at California State University, Fresno, and is currently the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution.

    • Glad to see it’s not just me tiring of “Dr.” Wallace. I am done watching his Sunday morning show. Marie Bartolomeo is on opposite him…..much better show!

  2. Thank you so much sir for having a brain, and one that functions quite nicely. And despite your understandable reticence, you choose to continue speaking the unvarnished truth. I am proud to be an American when there are fellow citizens like you. Please be well and may your spirit be undimmed. BTW I can’t stand those who sail under false colors any more than you.

  3. Because Labor Day is regarded as the kickoff of the General campaign, the first week of Oct. is the half-time for pondering the issues. Yet, the the Media is in slow motion.

    From Meet the Press to This Week (the last Sunday morning Talk show on 10-4-20), the DemMedia is in RePlay of the Clinton campaign exaggerations and extreme poll numbers to tout a Biden win. And because the same “characters” are still (4 consecutive years) bashing (Dems call Resistance) the President, those Doom & Gloom soundbites are boring reruns.

    Hence, Nov. 3, 2020 is another opportunity to retire more Establishment Democrats (aka, Term Limits).

    Adam of CA.

  4. Yes Victor, Chris Wallace is unofficially retired, but not intentionally. He still hasn’t realized it’s over.
    Wallace is following in Megyn Kelly’s footsteps. As a journalist blatantly biased against Republicans and their candidate yet working for a conservative news outlet, he now has no home. The liberal media will never accept him and we will never trust him again.
    He had a good gig going as perhaps the last honest and non-partisan mainstream journalist that didn’t automatically dismiss and disparage conservatives, but alas, it was all a show.

    • I don’t know where you get the comment “perhaps the last honest and non-partisan mainstream journalist that didn’t automatically dismiss and disparage conservatives” from, but Wallace has been a hack journalist for years. I couldn’t stand to watch him on Fox News to the point where I would turn him off or change the channel. He was never any good, and never non-biased.

    • wallace doesn’t work for a conservative outlet, he works for foxnn

    • Hanson’s words:

      “In other words, with no information, no facts, and no expertise, Dr. Wallace was now judge, jury, and executioner pontificating about why the president was singularly culpable for his own medical fate—”
      A few facts. 1. Trump was not tested when he arrived at the debate because he claimed he was late.
      2.His entire entourage was asked to wear masks while in the audience. They refused. 3. As he told Bob Woodward, in his own words & on tape, that Trump KNEW in February that the virus was very serious,especially dangerous to seniors (him) and did spread by the air such as breathing,talking,shouting, singing, etc, yet to the American people he told them just the opposite and he himself behaved for the next 7 months that he never acted like he knew he should!

    • “In other words, with no information, no facts, and no expertise, Dr. Wallace was now judge, jury, and executioner pontificating about why the president was singularly culpable for his own medical fate—”

    • But boy is Megan Kelly trying to retrace her footsteps and get back into conservative media’s good graces!!

    • You could see, over the past couple years (at least) Wallace’s bias from a mile away. The debate performance was no surprise to anyone paying attention. He is clearly a tool for the liberals.

    • Thank you VDH! Another great column by a great historian and writer!

      Reply

    • One article reported John’s wife works for one of the “main street” news agencies…ABC as I remember. Also it reported that elitist Chris Wallace’s wife is a DC Socialite and she gives and they attend all the social events of the Dems. I resent Fox for wasting our time with Wallace; I immediately change channels when he’s on. His bias and unearned reputation as a great media icon is laughable.

    • Wallace hasn’t been able to hide his bias against trump since day 1. Haven’t watched him in several years. Just another clueless left wing hack.

    • And now the CDC says lockdowns are bad and statistics say masks dont work.
      FOLLOW THE SCIENCE Wallace.

  5. Chris Wallace would prefer to be an opinion commentator instead of a journalist even though he has spent his whole life in the field of journalism. The biggest problem with that is his opinions are not interesting to the audience of the network that pays him. Fox News watchers don’t agree with and are uninterested in his opinions. In a legitimate business when the market speaks, changes are made. Unfortunately though, Fox News is no longer a legitimate business, so there will be no changes. The only reason Wallace even works at Fox News is that he friendly enough to the Left (he’s a registered Democrat) to be picked as moderator for a Presidential Debate. Of course he is going to pull a Crowley, if he didn’t his whole Fox News existence would fall like a house of cards. So don’t expect any changes. He’s not going anywhere. And he probably host a Presidential Debate in 2024.

  6. Horrific Wallace forgot he is just a lowly reporter NOT AN EXPERT , not a MD, not a PHD.
    He is a Repeater of words. Just a Plagiarist of others expert words. No more no less.

    Yet he tried to inflect his opinion as fact giving soft-ass Hillary Clinton questions to Biden while degrading the President of the USA and the FREE WORLD Donald J Trump

    Trump not only defended himself, BUT ALL AMERICAN PEOPLE with considered and balanced reply.

    REPORTER Wallace facebook opinions are now words that are valueless allowing Democrat normals of disinformation, norms of lying, norms of envy, norms of false reporting CNN NYT, norms of race against race,
    norms of shooting innocent police, beating up Fellow hard working taxing paying US or MAGA citizens for not accepting Socialism, supporting Democrat Lobbyists at the expense of honest US Workers,
    gerry meandering the electoral college by cheating postal voting by dumping Trump ballot voting ballots
    has made Wallace words a hypocrite.

    The name Wallace should be considered to be flushed down the sewer hole with the rest of the CRAP.

  7. Perfectly put. I never liked Wallace. I tolerated Robert’s. They are bother loser hacks in bed with the Democratic party. After Fox pushed back on Gingrich for mentioning Sorros, I look at Fox differently. Time to switch to OAN.

  8. Brevity is the soul of wit my good man. Bravo!

    President Trump has an almost supernatural animal spirit that shines the klieg light of truth on the corrupt machinations of the Democrat Party and its clown cronies like Chris Wallace.

    President Trump is the raging bull in the Democrat Party china shop.

    • This set up con job goes all the way back to the 60 minutes con jobs. The Righteous, the almighty saviors of the 70s. They set you up to take you down.
      Joe Biden is the most abhorrent Politician of our time. The man will and has sold his soul to get elected. He’s a fake and a fraud and Wallace knows it. For the first time in 50 years we become energy independent with enough natural gas to run our power plants for 50 years and the fraud Biden says we should turn them off.. Wallace is silent. His daddy taught him well.

    • We should not claim the Democrat party has an exclusive hold on corruption. Many clowns from the GOP also have crony deals feathering the beds of their friends and families. Moreover the Bush and Romney famlies owe their allegiances to the same group of Big Money financiers as Clinton and Obama. Prior to President Trump they gave us a mere illusion of choice in our elections.

      • rommney’s son is just as dirty as hunter cabbage head. received ukraine money.

      • Of course corruption isn’t solely Democratic. After all, they are politicians aren’t they? They go hand in hand, politics and corruption.

      • “Many” are corrupt. It should be no problem at all for you to name the top five and their corruption specialty. Please – enlighten us.

      • You missed one important fact: The Bush and Romney families are not traitors as are the Clinton, Obama, and Biden families.

      • Reagan didn’t want Bush as his running mate, as I heard that he did not like him. Reagan was the real deal, although I didn’t like some of the things he did towards the end of his presidency.

    • Just wanted to compliment you on that beautiful sentence about the “almost supernatural animal spirit.” Wow! Well-done.

  9. As usual an excellent article by Victor Davis Hanson. Unfortunately I am now turned off by American greatness.

    I don’t know who the fool was; I don’t know who was stupid enough to change the commenting engine away from Disqus but, they should be fired.

    Apparently, that fool doesn’t realize, that part of the pleasure of coming to a site like this is being able to actually interact with other readers and share our opinions and visa versa.

    Well, this is the first time I’ve come to American greatness in over a week, since they changed to this onerous commenting engine.

    I wrote a direct email to Chris Bursick commenting on this, but apparently it has fallen on completely deaf ears.

    I suggest, if you agree with me that you write Chris Bursick at

    Chris@ Amgreatness.com

    and let him know if you agee and feel the way Ido, until then Au revoir my friends, I miss you.

    • Whilst I sympathize with your position, a coupla thoughts: The last time the comments section went dark, I emailed Mr Buskirk and (to my astonishment) he replied that Disqus(tm) issues had crashed the site. There may be an unseen side to this. Some have defended the change on the basis (more or less) of “control,” but I’m not buying it whilst the Twitter(tm) and FREAKING FACEBOOK!!!(tm) hooks are still there. The other issue is content. I’ve been actively looking for a clear replacement and have not done well. OTOH the question before the populi is whether the content can hold in the face of the likely signoffs…

      Be well, sir.

    • i completely agree with you about Discus-I think that AG should re-read the VDH article and apply the conclusion to their decision to drop out of discuss.

    • Samsara Guru is quite right; Disqus was a far superior system of encouraging and presenting reader feedback. The sites I frequent and comment on most frequently all use it, and it often provokes a far superior grade of commentary than the usual “I am not!” / “You are too!” rants fruitlessly experienced elsewhere. I encourage American Greatness to live up to its name by returning to this valuable service with all possible speed!

    • Comment section are going away like the dodo bird. Just be thankful they still have one.

    • Completely agree. Several writers here have let the mask slip in recent weeks, sharpening their knives aimed at Trump’s back. VDH’s article is all that brought me back here after a week of staying away. In the future I’ll attempt to get his content elsewhere.

    • Google’s AD monopoly is to blame. They are shutting down all conservative comment sites under ‘moderatuon/censorship’ to disable conservative resistance. They did it to Federalist and zerohedge, now amgreatness, the last hold out is breitbart.

      • Yes, I’ves seen that shutting down a lot, too, but thankfully, there are more hold-outs –I have several bookmarked, and you probably do, as well (Ace of spades, American Thinker, Conservative Treehouse, etc.) But damn the goolag. They are the corrupt equivalent of Bell inventing the telephone and then deciding who “rates” highly enough to be able to use it.

        We can help somewhat by gently reminding (esp for those in the public eye/ear) that it is a brand name, not a verb, and that everyone will know what you mean if you write or say “search it” instead of using their brand to give them free advertising.

        My vote–AG—bring back Discus.

    • I emailed American Greatness as well and have heard nothing. They ruined a great site.

    • SamsaraGuru, I could not agree with you more. The same thing happened over at American Thinker when they changed to Vukkle from Disqus and I wrote volumes about the change, to no result.

      I am also thrilled by your screen name. In years past I used the handle “Babaramram” for about 10,000 comments on Disqus. I am a devotee of Neem Karoli Baba and a strong conservative for Trump. It is good to see other’s with this spiritual understanding, be it reincarnation or simply devotion to a guru, supporting the President.

      • Professor Victor Hanson is not only a brilliant thinker, but an superb e-ssayist.

    • I also hate the comment system. hope they change it back the way it was.

    • Ditto.
      And yes, I’d encourage everyone to respond as SGuru indicates. The new format feels like wading through mud.

  10. Another excellent article by VDH. We can’t hammer on the truth enough about the media. Their hypocrisy is more visible every day. They choose not to hide it anymore. I remember noticing the changes during the Obama 8 year reign; the media lies by omitting the truth, but during Obama’s presidency we saw them begin to edit tapes and actively work to reshape the media. I believe it’s always been this way, things just move too fast for them to hide it anymore.

    Imagine how different our nation would be if the media were to truly do their job. To be unbiased and report the truth. We most likely would have exposed the coup on Trump four years ago. Trump’s first term was held back by the media telling the world, our president was compromised by Putin, three years of leaks and fake reporting, an impeachment proceeding based on lies and 24/7 negative media coverage.

    The damage of the Clintons and Obamas is living large in our lives. But fortunately for America, we have Trump on our side.

  11. Perhaps the most depressing part of this is knowing that Wallace was ostensibly the “conservative” debate moderator, by comparison to the next two. Once again–as it has for decades–the GOP rolls over for the Commission on Presidential Debates.

    • Agree with ata777. VDH is remarkably pitch perfect in his analysis as usual. Wallace must have some “juice” at Fox. John Roberts appeared to have been sent out to rationalize Wallace’s repulsive moderating——and ended up looking like an idiot. It would not surprise me if Roberts eventually ends up on a second tier gig pretty soon. Wallace Thinks he can now proudly hang with his peers from “Sunday Morning Land” . He is mistaken of course. Every one on Fox is told to shut up about Wallace or justify his moderating performance. Not a good look at all.

    • I agree that there is a lack of conservative debate monitors. Problem is that the Democrat candidate would never agree to a conservative debate monitor, because they know they will get tough questions from them. Have you noticed who Obama and Biden and Hillary let interview them? Glo-Zell, Cardi B, etc.
      But I agree that the GOP should insist on at least 1 conservative moderator and let the Democrats tell us why they decline to show up to that debate.

    • Seems to me, you’re confusing conservatives with the RINOs that control the GOP in Congress in rolling over for the Democrats (not just Commission on Presidential Debates). Trump had to defeat the RINOs before he went after the political establishment (which also includes the RINOs) and you can see that Congress hasn’t been very helpful to Trump via their lack of initiative (like calling for hearings on Obama’s spying on Trump) or proposing anything to limit government.

      You don’t see Trump rolling over, and he’s really quick to pick up on the bias. I remember Trump stating he was debating Wallace as well as Biden, but didn’t see what it was that Trump saw so quickly. After reviewing the tape, you can see both Wallace and Biden interrupting Trump before Trump interrupted anyone, and VDH makes it very clear how biased the questions actually were, and how biased Wallace was.

    • Agree! I am fed up with the GOP giving in to the Dems on the moderators for these debates! I seriously can’t recall the last time one was at least middle of the road and didn’t lean left. What gives that the GOP doesn’t show a bit of backbone here and hold out for an actual fair person? ????????‍♀️

  12. The best part of Trump (like him or not) — he’s a “revealer”. We get to see what people think and how they truly feel. And, many got eye-opening views of Chris Wallace and John Roberts last week…

  13. Chris Wallace accurately described Trump’s Charlottesville comment. Trump said that there were “fine people” marching with the White Supremacists and Nazis. Asking him about that was not the same thing as what Crowley did at all.

    • That is damned lie. There were no Klansmen or “nazis” marching at that event. Those were leftist false flag operations designed for media consumption. Virtually EVERY Southerner admires R. E. Lee and is appalled at the idea yanking down his monuments. The people at that event were overwhelmingly ordinary people who are daily offended by the kind of attacks that are now being directed at the Historic American Nation. Those leftist fanatics who attacked the protesters in Charlottesville went on to topple statues of Washington and Lincoln. That’s who they really are.

      • Thanks. I’m astonished that someone is still trying to spread that old lie of the dims.

        Well-said. I miss the “like” ability…

    • David, you might want to read the quote before commenting. The real version, not the CNN edited version.

    • “Excuse me, they didn’t put themselves down as neo-Nazis, and you had some very bad people in that group. But you also had people that were very fine people on both sides. You had people in that group – excuse me, excuse me, I saw the same pictures you did. You had people in that group that were there to protest the taking down of, to them, a very, very important statue and the renaming of a park from Robert E. Lee to another name.”

      “I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and white nationalists because they should be condemned totally.”

      “Racism is evil, and those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”

      Direct quotes from the news conference at the time. Can you show me where Trump said fine people were “marching with the White Supremacists and Nazis”?

    • That’s not what Trump said, jerk – he did not say that there were fine people marching with white supremacists and Nazis. He initially said that there fine people on both sides, referring to the statue debate. Thirty second later he repeated it, but this time specifically saying he was not referring to white supremacists, who should be condemned. Sick of this constantly getting repeated.

    • You are totally wrong and it shows you have never read the entire transcript that include all the sentences in his remark. His remark about “good people on both sides” was refering to both sides of the argument over the Confederate statue which was the issue that was being hotly contested. It was not a reference to the two sides of the fighting protesters. In fact, his later sentences in his remarks specifically denoince KKK and supremacists. Know your facts. Wallace knows perfectly well that he was presenting a cherry picked sentence that has been used to carry on a lie. It was intentional and biased journalism

    • Trump did not say that in that context, go find the video and watch it.

    • Your comments are simply not true, David. We have all watched the video over and over. He said there were fine people on both sides who were part of the crowd and he specifically denounced the white supremacists. You have had it hammered into your head by repetitious misrepresentations that he said what you think. You have a responsibility to vet what you say in a public forum. You clearly did not do that in this case.

    • You need to go back and rewatch that entire press conference. He said, more than once, that he denounces the White Nationalists and neo-nazis. He even explicitly said he wasn’t referring to them when he said there were “fine people on both sides”. Wallace’s question about it was predicated on a lie. Aside from that, he asked the same thing at the debate in 2016, and Trump explicitly denounced White Nationalists then. What Wallace and Roberts are doing is dishonest. They both know he has denounced racism, white nationalism, and all forms of violent radicalism repeatedly. They harangue him on this relentlessly and then ignore his answer.

      • The Charlottesville comment came AFTER 2016, so it is perfectly appropriate to ask the question again. Yes, Trump explicitly said that he wasn’t referring to white supremacists and then he said there were fine people marching with them, so he kind of contracted himself. There were no fine people marching with the Nazis because fine people don’t do that.

    • David, you lie! This is what Trump said: “You had some very bad people in that group, but you also had people that were very fine people, on both sides. I saw the same pictures as you did. You had people in that group that were there to protest the taking down of, to them, a very, very important statue and the renaming of a park from Robert E. Lee to another name. So you know what, it’s fine. You’re changing history. You’re changing culture. And you had people — and I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and the White nationalists, because they should be condemned totally — but you had many people in that group other than neo-Nazis and White nationalists. Okay? And the press has treated them absolutely unfairly. Now, in the other group also, you had some fine people. But you also had troublemakers, and you see them come with the black outfits and with the helmets and with the baseball bats. You had a lot of bad people in the other group.” BTW: According to your sick out of context lie and logic, Trump also said there are good Antifas!

    • That is not what he said, and it’s common knowledge. He said that there were fine people on both sides of the argument about taking down Confederate statues, then immediately after that condemned the white supremacists and racists. I can’t believe anyone is still buying this BS.

    • Your comment below shows even more ignorance than this one. There were, indeed, people at that gathering who had come in order to show support for retaining the statuary of American history. Fine people do that. And they have no control of who shows up there, too, and in this case we have to take into account that the whole white-supremacist thing was a false flag operation as well. That is, the “fine people” were set up, just as the leftist agitprop was designed to snare Trump. As usual, he saw the trick and found a way to deal with it effectively, but the neo-communists keep trying to turn defeat into victory.

    • This is what Wallace said to Biden:
      “You have said that President Trump’s response to the violence in Charlottesville three years ago, when he talked about ‘very fine people’ on both sides, was what directly led you to launch this run for president.”
      This is what Trump said after Charlottesville:
      “Excuse me, they didn’t put themselves down as neo-Nazis, and you had some very bad people in that group. But you also had people that were very fine people on both sides. You had people in that group – excuse me, excuse me, I saw the same pictures you did. You had people in that group that were there to protest the taking down of, to them, a very, very important statue and the renaming of a park from Robert E. Lee to another name…I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and white nationalists because they should be condemned totally.”
      How does that equal a failure to condemn white supremacists? Trump explicitly condemns them. Biden lied in the statement opening his campaign, and Wallace abetted that lie during the debate.

      • “excuse me, excuse me, I saw the same pictures you did”

        What is that supposed to mean? That Trump can tell why people were marching just by looking at pictures?

      • Please notice David’s response with its all too typical lefty dishonesty. His prior responses were specific to “very fine people” (it is all true stated tacitly and directly). But then someone, Jane, puts the verbatim quote up. Anyone reading that knows it is game, set, match with only the most unhinged lefty reading it and still pushing the despicable lie that President Trump was praising and supporting nazis. The verbatim quote clearly shows, to anyone who considers thoughtfulness to be important, the “very fine people” comment has been used dishonestly as a gotcha politics blunt force object by lefty/mass media.
        Now see David/lefties change tactics, try to move the conversation away from his/their uncovered overt dishonestly, by attacking a different statement regarding pictures. Oh yes! how dastardly that President trump brought up pictures.

      • I watched the whole thing live and there were people there (some were interviewed by local reporters) that were there to protest the taring down of the statues/monuments. They were also there to protest the KKK and Nazis, etc. The police made them all be in an small, enclosed part of the park, as they WANTED a conflict to happen and when it did, they were told to STAND DOWN and “let it rip” and not break it up. That was an evil thing to do, but that’s how Democrats roll.

    • He did not. He said that people who disagreed with the tearing down of historical statues, as well as though who do, are “fine people” who disagree. He absolutely condemned both fringe elements. Period.

    • Actually he did not. You are a liar sir, and not a very good one. Give it up.

      • What lie? What truth? Which statement?

        Honestly, I can’t tell to whom you are responding or what point you’re making. Are you saying VDH is a liar? What is he lying about? What is the truth you can match against his lie?

        Or are you responding to Jane? (Admittedly hard to tell given this new format)

    • Wrong. The “fine people on both sides” referred to the people there who wanted to take down the statues and those there who did not want to take statue down. He even said at one point it wasn’t the violent racists. But Biden keeps lying about it. Now that you know there are two sides to the story, will you acknowledge it? Wait, no. But at lest you now know the truth even though you deny it.

    • Wallace DID NOT accurately describe Trump’s comments. I watched the whole thing live from the beginning and there were people there (some were interviewed by local reporters) that were there to protest the taring down of the statues/monuments. They were also there to protest the KKK and Nazis, etc. The police made them all be in a small, enclosed part of the park, as the Dem Mayor, etc. WANTED a conflict to happen and when it did, they were told to STAND DOWN and “let it rip” and not break it up. That was an evil thing to do, but that’s how Democrats roll.

  14. Crowley did us all a favor by helping to prevent Romney from reaching the White House. He would have been a complete disaster, just as his senatorial career has been. Utah needs to recall this snake.

    • I went door-to-door for Romney. His ORCA system was a complete fail. It had me knocking on Obama front doors on Election Day to get out the vote. The blue collar neighborhoods which are voting as a block for Trump gave me contemptuous looks back then. I don’t think Washington fully appreciates this, but while they chatter about hair-cutting escapades and dogs driving down the highway on the roof, people out here are trying to live from week-to-week and don’t have the luxury of giving a hoot. They vote pocketbook. What actually sunk Romney in the eyes of the people I was contacting was the idea that he had helped shift American jobs overseas for personal enrichment. Trump need only push the economic message – taxes, energy, American jobs, and he will win.

    • There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that he would have been a FAR better president than a second term of Barack Obama. I would have been happy if all he had done was just to cut the damage being done.

    • Mitt Romney would have easily been a better president than was Barack Obama. Obama/Biden was a disaster of an administration. But at least Obama got to invite his favorite NBA players and entertainers to the White House.

    • He’s horrible….but I’m convinced that no one running for president in my lifetime has had the inborn hate for America and Americans that O did. And his lack of morality meant he did not hesitate to use the methods of a scoundrel (to put it lightly) to “transform America.”

      But geez, yes, absolutely….what in the world is Utah doing voting for MR after he pretty obviously took a dive (regardless of CC’s help; still, that’s what he did on his own) in that election, burdening us with four more years of the “good Christian family man” (weren’t those McCain’s words?) obama.

  15. Here’s hoping Mr. Wallace follows MS Crowley into early retirement. After sensing Mr. Wallace was not what he would have us think of him, I stopped watching his program more than a year and a half ago. We do need as unbiased a professional in Mr. Wallace’s place as Fox can find. President Trump can take care of himself against the likes of Mr. Wallace/Ms. Crowley, but the rest of us need as honest, unbiased news media as we can get. Mr. Wallace failed again to provide that .

  16. Our nation is dying from a media which seeks self-serving attention while laying waste to the decent longings of our people, spinning explosive, false narratives, inflaming passion, stating the speculative as fact and generally creating the conditions upon which a great fire may consume us all.

    btw – Disqus is a mixed bag. There doesn’t seem to be a good way to block Soros trolls who come onto conservative sites to toss Molotov cocktails.

  17. Wallace has been a camouflaged lefty hack for at least a decade; hiding behind bipartisanship to attack republicans. He’s no Tony Snow and FNS is now unwatchable. I hope VDH is right that he finally crossed the rubicon and his blatant partisanship is finally and forever more exposed.

  18. The media is the Democratic Party. Soylen Green is the Republican Party

  19. Won’t hold my breath until Fox News fires Wallace and Roberts though????

  20. Did you see the Sunday Wallace show? Right out of the Atlantic magazine. This guy is finished as a journalist.

  21. A good article by Hanson… although I think he exaggerates the impact of Wallace – because Pres Trump mowed over the top of Wallace.

    The big difference is that Romney capitulated to Crowley… and her intervention was at a critical point in a critical debate. I personally think that her intervention sunk Romney’s momentum and campaign… Romney had a good chance of defeating Obama if he had won that second debate., and he had forced Obama to concede on that point, or least had left it hanging. They were going toe to toe.

    The whole world could have been different if Romney had been strong at that moment.

    I partly blame Romney and his advisors, because Crowley had threatened beforehand to not be quiet during the debate .. and they were not prepared. The reality is that Romney was not able to think on his feet – that is undoubtably one of Pres Trump’s HUGE strengths… so Romney should have been prepared.

    To be honest I don’t think any of us were surprised by how blatantly biased Wallace was. It was like he was sheltering Biden as an invalid.. as we have seen, Pres Trump’s numbers improved after the debate.

    I heard that Obama had attended Crowley’s wedding, and they had a personal relationship … in addition to the fact that 99% of the journalists fawned over Obama.

  22. The media insistence that the President say the exact words as they dictate, is the same as BLM et al demanding that you kneel-merely saying that you are not racist is not and never will be enough…

  23. I’ll take the full Crowley over the full Hanson–nothing but alt-nazi spin dressed up as pseudo-academic moralizing–any day.

  24. The sad part is that Fox News has been shoving Chris Wallace down our throats SINCE the debate. He has been on just about every show, spewing his hate and lies. Fox News is going down hill too.

  25. The most upsetting thing about this debate was the moderator, Wallace. Was Trump supposed to behave all gentlemanly while the format and the biased questions were designed to make him look bad? Thankfully Trump rebelled against that. And Wallace was supposed to me the “conservative” moderator? What is wrong with the Commission for Presidential Debates and why do Republicans accept it? The whole thing upset me and I hope I never see that smarmy, entitled Wallace on TV again.

  26. The greatest asset in the democrat media’s arsenal is that solid (but dwindling) base of supporters who aren’t bright enough to know (or simply don’t care) when their intelligence is being insulted.

    The greatest defect in the democrat media’s strategy is their belief that all Americans are as dumb as their base.

  27. Imagine how the left would react if Mark Levin or Laura Ingraham “moderated” a debate…

  28. Another excellent article by VDH. And a really big vote down to American Greatness for ruining the commenting system. Because of this change I’ll only be back to read VDH. I hope he goes to a site that supports good commenting.

  29. Something larger is afoot. Since Rupert Murdoch turned the reins at Fox over to his liberal son, the network has dramatically shifted. For example, pundits on Sunday’s news shows joined in the chorus of Trump hatred, excoriating him for taking a ride in The Beast to wave at his supporters. Fox polls are notoriously more negative towards Trump than many others. Other than the evening opinion shows (which account for the bulk of Fox’s revenues), the network has swung to the left. It comes from the top. Don’t forget that in 2016 Rupert Murdoch, in the GOP primary phase, deemed Trump a “clown” and told debate moderator Megyn Kelly to “Take Him Out,” which she duly tried with hostile questions about various women’s accusations. I think it’s time to retire Fox, which was once the only non-leftist network.

  30. You are totally wrong and it shows you have never read the entire transcript that include all the sentences in his remark. His remark about “good people on both sides” was refering to both sides of the argument over the Confederate statue which was the issue that was being hotly contested. It was not a reference to the two sides of the fighting protesters. In fact, his later sentences in his remarks specifically denoince KKK and supremacists. Know your facts. Wallace knows perfectly well that he was presenting a cherry picked sentence that has been used to carry on a lie. It was intentional and biased journalism

  31. In accounting-speak, the number of COVID-19 infections is a top-line number; the number of deaths is the bottom line.

    As testing increases and the virus spreads, positive test results increase; however, the percentage of hospitalizations continues to decrease as those infected are increasingly younger and healthier. The percentage of those hospitalized who die remains stubbornly high, but we should all be optimistic for improvements in therapeutics and medical protocols.

    Also, too, remember ~210k deaths remains far fewer than the ~2M predicted by the earlier models.

    • there have only been about 16k covid deaths. the rest were due to pre-existing conditions, or things like pneumonia.

    • And likely 90% of those 210,000 died WITH, not FROM Covid. If Trump had been attacked and killed in his drive-by at Walter Reed, he would have been counted as died of Covid simply because he had it, along with anyone in the SUV with him or the SUVs traveling with him because they MIGHT have had it. There is no international standard for counting Covid deaths, and the US has provided, via ~$13k payments (CARES act) an incentive for hospitals to over report deaths as Covid. Died of pneumonia (very common primary cause for elderly)? Must be Covid related.

    • Yes! Couldn’t agree more.

      Two caveats…

      1) Vast and critical differences between and among our ongoing estimates of total people who have been infected with Wuhan V (revealed only through anti-body testing)…..people who currently test positive for the disease….people who test positive AND are actually symptomatic….. people who are sick enough to require medical intervention…. and people who actually die FROM the virus (as opposed to dying WITH the virus).

      The CDC estimates a 10X multiplier effect (known cases to total infected). This means the U.S. MIGHT contain as many as 75M WuhanV ‘victims’. They also estimate that only 6% of the dead truly die FROM WuhanV….the balance of the deaths occur in those who AVERAGE 2.4 comorbidities each. That fact, of course, leads to significant confusion when it comes to official ’cause of death’ (especially when federal funding is tied to WuhanV deaths): a 94 yr. old man….who is hypertensive….suffering from COPD….has a hard time breathing and goes to the hospital. He tests positive for the virus and dies two days later. What killed him? Who knows?

      2) You note the 210K deaths, a tragic figure. But it is important to equally note that in that same 7 month period — in a normal, unremarkable year — we’d expect about 1.8M Americans to die anyway. 8000 of us every single day, on average. This is a ‘death harvest’ which goes completely unnoticed, save by the 8000 families afflicted by those 8000 tragedies. Now we say — in 8 months — 12% of our normal total was pushed/caused by WuhanV. Was that 12% incremental (on top of the 1.8M)? Or was it included? (and if included, how much included)? We simply don’t know the answers to these questions. The CDC calculates an “excess death” total …..but even they are guessing. Two years from now, will we see a 12% increase sitting atop the 1.8M….or will we see a 3-4 month peak balanced by a valley 6-12 months from now? Your guess as good as my own.

      If you’re not familiar, I’d strongly recommend William Briggs insight into the Virus Counts. You can find them here: https://wmbriggs.com/?s=virus&orderby=relevance&order=DESC

  32. In my American mind, Chris Wallace retired several years ago.

  33. Brilliant, VDH! I have searched, in vain, for an honest critique of the Wallace debate performance. I looked, but did not find. Until now. VDH makes the case that Wallace is a true left believer. Our own eyes and ears told us the same, but never so compellingly.

    Roberts and Wallace do not belong at Fox; if Fox thinks they do now, then Fox is simply an additional party infected with an inexplicable hatred of our President. If Fox wishes to retain credibility with the great majority of the population which has relied on it for years, it will forwith fire both men. And restore the lustre to “Fair and Balanced.”

    Their work is not objectionable because they hold strong anti-Trump views. Their work is evil because they slipped their knives in, while pretending to be objective journalists. Brazenly! They have libeled their profession and shown they do not belong in it. Messrs. Wallace and Roberts, you have lost your reputations, never to be restored. What is Candy Crowley doing these days???

  34. Sunday night at my parents’ my mother had Fox tuned in waiting for Levin’s show. But she was an hour early and Wallace’s mug popped up instead. A collective groan went around the room. Mom yelled “go join your buddy Shep Smith” and we scrambled for the remote.

  35. Trump’s performance at the debate was unpresidential and unmanly. He couldn’t debate on merits so he screamed and interrupted. Americans were put off by his demeanor, not “media bias” from the moderator.

    Let’s talk about GOP bias. Y’all thought Obama was a monster for “allowing” Benghazi to happen and equivocating the definition of terrorism. Four Americans tragically lost their lives that day, and Republicans did a really shabby job of politicizing those deaths for 4+ years, sickeningly.

    Meanwhile, back in the post-apocalyptic hellscape known as Trumpworld 2020, the GOP is all too happy to embrace a president who has presided over the deaths of over 200,000 Americans and downplayed the deadliness of this virus. His spineless abdication of leadership on this issue has been inexcusable, and his inability to grapple with the science (instead of the scientists) has directly resulted in more death and a prolonged crippling of the economy.

    These deaths are on this man’s hands, but the blind hypocrisy of the Republican Party won’t acknowledge any fault with him. Your mindless allegiance to a sick, immoral, self-aggrandizing autocrat is the stuff human atrocities are made of. March on, peons, and God help us all.

  36. We watched Chris Wallace on FOX News Sunday for many years, but we stopped about a year ago, repelled by his constant bias in favor of Democrats. As Mike Wallace’s son, it appears the acorn doesn’t fall too far from the tree. Chris today is a hopelessly biased Democrat, and Dr. Hanson is generous in calling him a “marquee journalist” when he is really nothing but a political hack. FOX has been moving further and further to the left in recent times, and Wallace and Roberts are leading that change. We always watch Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity, because they tell the truth, but I can only wonder if their days are not as numbered as were Bill O’Reilly’s.

  37. VDH gives “nuanced dynamic” the visibility it deserves in our time-compressed, nanosecond-milking media culture. Gotcha de jure journalism — popcorning kernels of truth — is sustained by demonized-targeting through reframed debates. The Federalists likely started this by inventing the term “Anti-Federalists.”

  38. Of course corruption isn’t solely Democratic. After all, they are politicians aren’t they? They go hand in hand, politics and corruption.

  39. Just remember, Pravda and Izvestia couldn’t keep the Soviet Union from collapsing. Eastern Europe threw off communism despite having a communist-controlled press. For the most part, the American media has lost their ability to influence–those who believe will continue to believe; those who don’t will not be swayed.

    • Speaking about citizens rejecting their government, the Germans are fed up with the liberal leadership of Merkel.
      DW (Digital World) news aired a video on Aug. 31, 2020 showing peaceful protestors fed up with waiting who turn around and attacked the German Parliament building to set it on fire. One woman spoke to the camera: “No gov. is better than a corrupt gov.”
      Ms. Merkel ignited this fire storm when she declared to the Media that she (who had just survived a Recall vote) would allow (in defiance of the public rejection of her Open Borders policy) more illegals to invade Germany.

  40. I stopped watching Fox News Sunday some time back due to Wallace’s Trump hate. I knew he’d attack Trump at the debate. I chuckled when Trump made a comment about debating both Biden and Wallace.

    Now I immediately mute Wallace if he shows up on other fox programs

  41. Another great analysis by VDH, a national treasure.

    The problem is that Wallace’s outrageous bias forced President Trump, even in my brother’s eyes (and he is a strong Trump supporter) to view Trump as appearing mean and ineffective in the debate.

  42. Assumptions

    Every proposition is based upon a set of assumptions. The argument against White Supremacy is that Whites are not superior. Really?

    What is meant by superior? Superior to whom?

    By definition, Euro-Caucasians have an average IQ of 100. Northeastern Asians such as Chinese and Japanese, 105. Jews, especially Ashkenazi Jews from Europe, 110. African Negroes, 80 with Pygmies at 55.

    Almost all advances in science and technology have been by Euro-Caucasians, especially Nordics . White Supremacy? Maybe there’s a case for it.

    • Sometime ago a black rapper or entertainer of some sort claimed on some sort of media that whites were
      “inferior” to blacks. This outburst became viral and I naively decided to respond on Breitbart. I wrote that a comparison of the achievements between sub-Saharan Africans and Europeans should be made in order to test the declarant’s statement. My post was vetted and never appeared as a comment on the article. It appears that political correctness is ubiquitous. No doubt FNC now suffers from the same disease, Liberalism.

  43. What subversive has infiltrated American Greatness, American Thinker and revolver, among others, and promoted these idiot color combinations that render the text either extremely difficult or completely impossible to read for the ten percent of the male population afflicted with color blindness? If some restorations are not made soon, I will begin to block any site using these colors. That affects your site numbers and income, editors.

  44. President Trump is not the divisive one in 2020.

    Let that sink in.

    If President Trump were divisive, then President Obama before him was just as divisive, by simply choosing policies that don’t appeal to his non-constituents. “Elections have consequences” according to President Obama.

    The most divisive ones in 2020 are threefold.

    First, the divisive ones include the Democrats who immediately proclaimed loudly “Not my President” the moment President Trump was elected, and long before his inauguration. Democrats became active in undermining a Trump Presidency in underhanded, possibly even illegal ways. Rantings from many, including Maxine Waters have created a hostile and violent environment. It’s the reaction to President Trump’s election that has been a major cause of the division.

    Republicans were just as upset about the election of President Obama in 2008. In contrast to Democrats in 2016, Republicans after the 2008 election of President Obama used legal means to change the outcome of future elections. Republicans were peaceful and also successful, for the most part, first flipping Congress, and then flipping the Senate. That’s not divisiveness. That’s a Republic.

    Second, the divisive ones include Republican Never Trumpers. Never Trumpers are “useful idiots” on liberal television shows. Never Trumpers can be trotted out by the liberal media as Republicans, to show how even handed the shows are. But Never Trumpers are not Republicans, at least in this era. And the shows are not even handed. Never Trumpers provide a false legitimacy of even handedness.

    Finally, the divisive ones include most of the media. When a Harvard University study shows that 92% of the coverage of President Trump is negative, divisiveness is evident. If the administration was abjectly wrong 92% of the time, negative coverage would be accurate and show the power of a free press. But President Trump has not been fundamentally wrong 92% of the time. There are numerous examples of positive outcomes that almost everyone should applaud: the crippling of ISIS; the economy prior to the pandemic; the creation of opportunity zones; support for black colleges; building the military; improvements for veteran care; etc. Much of the rest is subject to opinion, just as the decisions of President Obama were.

    Instead media coverage omits or downplays positive news for President Trump (e.g. Mideast peace). The media omits or downplays negative news for liberal causes (e.g. murders in the ‘’Zone” in Seattle, murders every weekend in Chicago). The media reports on causes in a positive way, which are divisive by their very nature (e.g coverage of Antifa and Black Lives Matter).

    The media intentionally creates division because divisiveness sells newspapers and clicks, and drives viewership. President Trump is more interesting and controversial than anyone else in politics. President Trump sells newspaper, clicks and viewership. Interestingly enough, if the media help to unseat President Trump, the media will have fewer clicks and fewer subscribers in the aftermath.

    And divisiveness will decrease, once President Trump leaves office, whether in 2021 or 2025. He’s not the causof divisiveness. It’s the reaction by Democrats, Never Trumpers and the media that causes it.

  45. As usual Mr. Hanson points out the hypocritical, arrogant, know it all’s like Chris Wallace and John Roberts. I would love to send them and Fox news an engraved copy of this article to hang on their wall of “fair and balanced” reporting.

  46. Victor Davis Hanson again brings clarity to what many intrinsically felt. He will truly be missed for his clear-headed commentary on Fox News. The next generation Murdoch clan in charge gave Wallace his soap box and Paul Ryan the behind the scenes influence. They will likely silence VDH as one of the clearest voices of reason on Fox as it transitions to its leftist media home.

  47. Wallace has always been biased, as any long time FNC viewer knows. Why FNC chose him in the first place is simply a mystery… it’s FNC’s managements fault, they should have known better. Roberts is simply a baby.

    • I thought the same thing…who the hell in the RNC and Trump campaign signed off on Wallace being the moderator???!!! He said on his FOX news Sunday show that “Trump called immigrants animals”. The evil disgusting anti-USA Wallace KNEW what Trump said at that meeting with chiefs of police at the White House: that the MS13 members, one of whom a NYC Chief of Police was complaining that she could not keep him behind bars because of various regulations, after he was arrested because he butchered a person. That’s when he said “They are animals and we are going to figure out a way to get them off the streets”. He was talking of MS13 murderers. BTW, Trump’s Operation Legend is doing just that: getting the gang members, criminals off the streets!

  48. Dr. Hanson should have waited to see yesterday’s episode of Fox News Sunday before submitting this. He would have had even more ammunition with which to pummel Wallace. Not only does Wallace not recognize his biases, he trumpets them by showing an edited clip from the debate in some vain attempt to double down. His treatment of Steve Cortes was embarrassing only to be contrasted and further amplified by his fawning over Amy Klobuchar later in the show. He also shied away from hosting any guest on the “roundtable panel” that would have challenged his views or moderator performance.

  49. I agree with the posters who hate this new comment system. I will not be returning to AG, unless they change back to disqus.

  50. Meanwhile, in Virginia our governor and his wife have both contracted the coronavirus. They are religious mask wearers — religious in that they make an ostentatious point of wearing them when in view of any camera. And, yet, their abundance of caution didn’t save them from infection, a result consistent with the view that the conceit that the government can contain the diffusion of any virus is just that: a silly conceit.

  51. When the Murdoch kid took over at Fox News things changed. Ailes was railroaded out and the tenor of FNC changed. It was about that time that the change in Wallace, in particular, became apparent. Anyone associated with Trump or the GOP became a target. I stopped watching Fox two years ago, Wallace’s during the debate exemplifies exactly why.

  52. The devisiveness we are experiencing today is heating up ALL actors and bringing out their flaws and their biases. I have long seen Chris Wallace as the biased moderator he is just by the way he behaved with his guests on his Sunday show. I stopped watching his program years ago. I am disappointed in John Roberts – I have always appreciated his contributions in the past and thought he was fair.

    This reminds me of the book, 1984, and how all were, in the end, subsumed by the power of the state thru media and other ‘believers’ using passive/aggressive behavior to convert the most reluctant soul. Has the ‘glory of the story’ – read, The Watergate Scandal – turned all writers (they are no longer reporters) into Ministers of Truth?

  53. The media is in full dissembling mod about masks. I thought we were suppose to follow the “experts”.

    Well the CDC recommends masks for “source control” not protection of the wearer from exposure

    “Masks are recommended as a simple barrier to help prevent respiratory droplets from traveling into the air and onto other people when the person wearing the mask coughs, sneezes, talks, or raises their voice. This is called source control”
    –CDC, ‘Considerations for Wearing Masks’

    So Trump not wearing a mask is only an issue for the short period he has had the virus to shed. A condition he is now likely past given his treatment and the illness progression.

    The media has exposed their lingering COVID=Death belief. Likely inculcated by most of them living in the body farm of NYC and other high casualty counties. Trump’s quick turnaround will force the up-to-date knowledge of the virus into their thought process. Although Fox is still highlighting their doom-sayer medical experts outside of the Laura Ingraham show.

  54. Both tv & online alphabet Media (ABC, CBS, CNN, & NBC) are again campaigning (as in 2016) for the Democrat Liberal Socialist platform.
    Hence, Voters need to also repeat the rejection of the Democrat propaganda.

    Adam of CA.

  55. Just love the mind of VDH – hate this comment engine – Disqus is the way to go

  56. Thank you Mr. Hanson.
    Mr. Wallace I understand may be a registered Democrat, so his performance seems to be to preference.
    Mr. Roberts I had thought was tough but generally fair … until this episode disclosed his true colours.
    Hopefully everyone, including POTUS, shares your piece on their social media platform, as it needs to be read widely so people everywhere are helped to understand the truly repugnant nature of media today.

  57. A lot of typing but very little substance – other than a pathetic shoot-the-messenger theme. Why do you insist on publishing such second-rate blather? Seems this is more fitting as hack material for the RNC.

  58. Chrissy Wallace lamented the next day…
    “I spent hundreds of man-hours putting together a fair debate for the American people. I baked a ‘beautiful, delicious cake, and Trump put his foot in it!'”
    Wow. Talk about narcissism. Bye, Chrissy. Like so many other phony “journalists”, Trump has made you show your cards, and they ain’t pretty.

  59. Crowley retired, yes, but received an appointment to Harvard’s Institute of Politics as her reward for services rendered to the Party. What will the reward for Wallace be?

  60. An excellent accounting by Mr. Hanson of the twisted projection of bias afflicting Wallace who thinks his not so subtle bias has been going unnoticed. Well Mr. Wallace, it has not gone unnoticed. Your carefully orchestrated manipulation of the debate process was not subliminal as you had hoped. You are personally responsible for your journalistic integrity being cast into doubt and now you risk that being what you are most remembered for.

  61. Amazingly, Hanson twists himself in knots making false comparisons, lying, and delivering a one-sided homer for Trump. Shameful for one who claims to ba an academic.

    • So what you’re saying is that either you didn’t actually read what VDH wrote, or you aren’t capable of understanding it. Gotcha.

    • What false comparisons? What are the lies you believe you’ve identified?
      It’s impossible to respond to blind assertions without making equally blind assertions, getting us exactly nowhere.

      As for “claiming to be an academic”…he IS an academic. “He is a professor emeritus of Classics at California State University, Fresno, the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow in classics and military history at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, and visiting professor at Hillsdale College.” Certainly that makes him an academic.

      You are free, of course, to complain about his academic bona fides, if you wish….but you are mistaken if you believe that the mere fact of being in Academia somehow elevates one to the status of God or makes of their political commentary an eternal truth graved in stone. What he offers here is commentary, no more, no less.

      But until or unless you offer your own annotated commentary, our only possible response becomes the equally banal: no he doesn’t; no he isn’t; no it isn’t.

      Kinda pointless, don’t you think?

      • Oh, dear, I DO miss the “like” function…I see that the lack of Discus does not mean that AG is not increasingly invaded by those who merely slur and toss out insults without specifics. The fact that they feel no shame over it should not surprise me, although it still often does.

        Don’t like a positive PDT piece? Call the writer names, of course….people, people, this is not elementary school…nice reply. “He lies” has become the prominent “that’s why I don’t agree” excuse of 2020 — never with backing, always with venom. (along with “he only cares about himself,” which would imply mind-reading on the part of the commenter, but never mind that…)

  62. Other than Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity, and Laura Ingraham; Fox News should be renamed:

    Specifically, “Stuff Paul Ryan Tells Us” and more generally, the “RINO/NeverTrump Fake News Network.”

  63. SneakChrs
    Very well written VDH. The explanation for Chris Wallace’s lack to effectively moderate the debate is his need to give the impression that he dares to speak truth to power knowing this would solidify his standing with the fake news median by ignoring the news of the official senate report regarding concerns of Obama administration officials of Biden’s corrupt ties with Burisma and wife of ex-mayor of Moscow. This approach backfired as Trump stood his ground. Chris Wallace is still smarting over his debacle.
    Chris Wallace should come out like the MSNBC and CNN anchors and announce his bias against half of America. It’s not so much Trump that he feels superior to but the Americans whom Trump represent.

  64. How come there is no ‘print’ link on these posts? My spouse does not use the internet but likes to read some writers.

  65. There’s nothing wrong with Wallace that getting his ass kicked couldn’t fix. He’s a no-talent drip who owes his career to nepotism. He’s the Hunter Biden of journalists

    • Trump gave a terrible tone deaf debate performance and you chose to shoot the messenger. Typical.

      • Trump was backed into a corner and had to debate TWO people. I’ve always thought Wallace was despicable!. And Trump probably had early COVID at the time and he’s been ATTACKED 24/7/365 by the Dem’s coup brokers since he ran for office! IT’S AN EASY CHOICE REGARDLESS OF DEBATES, RUMORS, ‘OCTOBER SURPRISES’, ETC. – VOTE TRUMP FOR LIBERTY AND OUR CONSTITUTIONAL REPUBLIC OR VOTE BIDEN FOR SOCIALISM, TYRANNY AND OUR CONSTITUTIONAL REPUBLIC/BILL OF RIGHTS AND RULE OF LAW GOING DOWN THE TOILET!

    • So, threats of violence is how you think you can get people to ignore Trump’s failings.

      Interesting.

  66. ‘Candy’ Wallace should be forever branded by that farcical performance.

  67. I think it is high time that VDH be given the Medal of Freedom or at least a Pulitzer. I’m not speaking of just this article. I’ve read him for a long time. The way he speaks to people and provides analogies and meaningful information that all can understand. He rebuts the things like “the debate” and what many of us thought a ‘sh!tshow’. In reality though, he exposes hypocrisy like no other. Thank you VDH!!!

  68. Now that Biden is pretending that, if elected, he will be a president for all Americans, not just Democrats (hmmm….where have we heard that one before???), Wallace should have pressed him on why he refuses to condemn his party’s efforts to add DC and Puerto Rico as states, to eliminate the filibuster, and to pack the Supreme Court. So much for fair and balanced. And I’m certain that the next debate will be much more even-handed when the moderator once interned for Biden. What a joke.

  69. There are no journalists. They don’t exist. They are an imaginary group.

  70. It was sad that little Chrissy Wallace and John Roberts were all over Fox news trying to rebuild their destroyed reputations.

    I was disappointed that Hannity gave Roberts such a free pass.

    Both should be finished and for my money Wallace was finished long ago and Roberts is now done. Have no respect for either.

  71. It was bothersome to watch other Fox shows attempt to restore the reputation of both of these journalist. Wallace was all over the news and I don’t believe he can restore his reputation-it has been going the wrong way since he decided to be a never Trumper.

    Roberts ask some of the most banal questions possible in the press conferences.

  72. And, then, of course, there’s the little matter of masks being used to prevent infecting other people- not protecting yourself from the virus. So even if Trump had worn the talismask (talisman + mask = talimask) religiously, according to the common wisdom, it wouldn’t have prevented him from getting infected.

    • Plenty of people who wear them religiously have gotten sick. I heard Northham, the Virginia King of the Lockdown and mask wearing, is infected!

  73. What I never hear stated (or asked) about that Romney-Obama debate is how Obama knew that Crowley had the exact notes about that statement. He let Romney make a statement about his (Obama’s) failure to label Benghazi a terrorist act, asked Romney to restate/confirm it, and then asked Crowley to produce notes to vindicate him. That couldn’t possibly have happened “on the fly” but rather had to be a concocted/rehearsed moment.

  74. So how did it happen? Seriously? Because the media decides what stories even exist. To most Americans, the scandal of deep state trying a coup is not even known. If nobody reports it, did it even happen? I think faith saved them. Pope John Paul and Poland. So i’m counting on prayer and faith. I don’t see anything else.

  75. Wrong. The “fine people on both sides” referred to the people there who wanted to take down the statues and those there who did not want to take statue down. He even said at one point it wasn’t the violent racists. But Biden keeps lying about it. Now that you know there are two sides to the story, will you acknowledge it? Wait, no. But at lest you now know the truth even though you deny it.

  76. Victor a superb analysis.

    Wallace’s complete lack of self awareness of his obvious bias demonstrates his complete incompetence and intellectual shallowness. Behind the glasses, suit and the journalistic image —-a complete fraud and empty suit. Unfortunately he is one of many.

    His petulant whining after the debate that Trump stomped on his perfect “cake” was just further embarrassing —and makes him all the more nauseating.

  77. These so-called journalists are nothing more than actors, afflicted with Journalist Dysphoria.

  78. My “thank you” was not printed. Why? Too short? I Thought it said exactly what I feel deeply…not in caps, just a quiet thanks. I see “Amen” wasn’t too short.

  79. First, Wallace the Weasel goes Donna Brazille by announcing debate topics in advance, allowing Biden to arrive with a binder of scripted answers (immediately following the debate, Biden leaves the podium and a young lady is seen swooping in from side stage to scoop up the binder and run for the sidelines) and in the debate topics combines “race”and “violence” while completing omitting the Second Amendment from discussion, a singularly important and differentiating topic that clearly illustrates the differences between these candidates. The only valid poll results out here, cutting through white, black, brown, male female, young and old, rural and urban, is gun sales closely confirmed by concealed carry class enrollment and applications nationwide, long before the riots. Wallace was silenced by Biden on even bringing up this topic in Wallace’s bid to out-Woodward Bob Woodward, and to be remembered as the “invisible” debater who makes and breaks kings. Wallace knows Biden wants to do to gun makers (America’s true arsenal of democracy) what Hillary wanted to do to coal mines. Wallace knows Kam Harris was torpedoed by Tulsi G during the Democratic no nomination forums based on the hypocrisy of imprisoning small change potheads while bragging about toking at home, yet fails to ask Kam about the hypocrisy, the cruelty, the order of magnitude tyranny of bragging about owning a firearms for self defense as a prosecutor with three locks on her door, while also bragging about her intent to declare by executive order (ala Justin Trudeau) gun legislation if Congress fails to act within 100 days of her Presidency during those same forums. Last, Wallace fails to ask Biden whether El Paso drive by skateboarder Beto about his Hell yes, we are going to take your AR15s, your AK47s, quote, and how exactly, will this be accomplished, and how will this be received on the violence scale, or who will enter our homes when law enforcement is defunded, in preparation for the spy state? On the path from socialism to communism there inevitably becomes a crossroads when govt must remove from the homes of a free people the firearms that keep people free, safe, fed, and in protection of our nation. Most on Fox are simply out of touch with their Second Amendment rights, like AH who after Kam delivered her acceptance speech, said that Kam plans to ban plastic drinking straws, an impactful statement in a juice box world. Has the future debate moderator released the questions to the candidates? Or has the preferred candidate released the questions to the moderator? Why not go freestyle, and for the 2A questions, send in Ms. Katie Pavlich. My deepest respect to you, sir, Victor Davis Hanson.

  80. Interesting we did not have a need to fact checkers until the leftist started losing.

  81. I hoped someone would have you on their show at Fox News last night re: this article. I wonder if you have been banished. I can’t believe Tucker or Laura would agree to that. We need your voice!

  82. Both Wallace and Roberts have crashed and burned as far as I am concerned. Because of their actions, their reporting will always be questioned.

  83. In Godfather 1 Virgil Sollozo was given the contract to take out Vito Corleone. Sollozo said to the Corleone Consigliari “Five shots. They hit him with five shots and he’s still alive!”

    I feel the same way about Trump. The Libs are whining: “Six times…we hit him with Russia Collusion, we spied on his campaign, we tried to take out his crew with fake FISA warrants, we hit him with Ukraine and impeachment, we maligned his SCOTUS picks, we sabotaged the debate with Chris Wallace, we hit him with COVID, and he’s alive and still President!”

    Trump in a landslide. MAGA!

  84. Given all the “interpretations” that are required to constantly clarify Trump’s normal ramblings, it is nice of Mr. Hanson to show us that Obama was actually pretty clear in what he said, and Romney was wrong.

    And I do know it is hard defending Trump when the facts are against him. His inability to simply say four words “I condemn White Supremacist” is quite telling. But, you know when you are reduced to calling Chris Wallace a deep state plant just because he expected Trump to be truthful isn’t much of a defense for Trump’s terrible performance. Might as well call Hope HIcks a deep state plant for giving Trump COVID-19.

  85. Professor Hanson – Please create a full explanation as to the damage to our country that will result from the Dems winning this next election. For example: reentry to JCPOA and results therefrom; China relationship will allow China to become even more dominate, stay in WTO, corrupt the WHO, bribe politicians journalist and academics worldwide; Biden will wreck our economy which will lead to more and more government power in order to “fix” things. A weak economy will diminish military strength; it will lead to increasing poverty, inflation, crime, and further strain on families. The Dems will pack the Supreme Court, make DC and PR states, eliminate the Electoral College, and there will be one party rule making it impossible to reverse course through election process. There is not much time – please educate our people.

  86. The Fake News Mockingbird Media Psyop only tells us what they want us to hear and distort or leave out any context that challenges their narratives. We, the people, are merely tools to manipulate to achieve their goals. Turn it off, tune it out, defund it, and seek truth from trusted sources like VDH.

  87. So called debates are for the most part a waste of everyone’s time. Either they are entertaining or they are enraging but in any case they’re not the sober policy discussions we imagine. They’re not. They’re long-form political ads. Often the candidates quote their own commercials.

  88. I know, I repeat myself. – “Victor Hanson Hits the target again. He is a Master at what he does. Zeroed in and another bullseye. Thank you. And Thank You, President Donald J. Trump, for who you are and what you do.

  89. I wish voters would focus on the policies advocated by each candidate and not focus on personalities. If Trump wins re-election and Republicans do not win the House, he will be gone in four years. If the Democrats win House, Senate, and presidency, their radical far-left policies will be with us forever. Borders will be open, police will be defunded, Supreme Court will be packed, election fraud will be systemic, military will be weakened, government-run health care will be phased in, public schools will continue their indoctrination, free speech will become hate speech, 2nd amendment will be eroded, charter schools will be outlawed, Christians will be deemed far-right extremists, jobs and promotions will be awarded based on race rather than performance, all statues of historical figures will be demolished, riots will be tolerated, and there will never be another conservative, America-loving administration. The end result will be a move toward government dependency and a country ripe for takeover by China or Russia. Don’t think it can’t happen; it has happened many times in history. Think about the future of the USA, not whether you like Trump or Obama.

  90. Why you all are so surprised with Wallace behavior. Go back to third 2016 debates and watch them again. He did not change, slimy one. I was not surprised at all. It is time for him to go.