Monday on CNN’s “New Day,” Rep. Jim Himes (D-CT) reacted to the Democratic National Committee’s decision to skip over Fox News Channel for its primary debates for the 2020 presidential election cycle.
Hime told co-host Alisyn Camerota he did not think it was not the right decision and explained why he sometimes appears on Fox News.
Partial transcript as follows:
HIMES: Well, with all due respect to the DNC, no, I don’t think it was the right decision. Look, it’s no surprise to anybody, including to Fox News watchers that Fox is largely an instrument of the right wing, of the Republican Party. It’s a propaganda arm for the White House.
However, and the reason I go on Fox is that it’s watched by millions and millions of Americans. And I’m a big believer that if you put our ideas, Democratic ideas, which are about universal healthcare, making it easier for kids to go to college, making retirements more secure against whatever the nonsense is on the other side, cutting taxes for corporations and very wealthy people, hey, I don’t care what channel you’re on, we will have the appealing ideas. So, I would have made a different decision with all due respect to the DNC.
CAMEROTA: But I mean it’s interesting, congressman, since you believe it’s a propaganda arm for the White House, but you’re trying to get your ideas out there and you think that you need to speak to the Fox audience, have you ever seen your interviews move the needle?
HIMES: Well, one of the secrets, not so secret secrets about television, of course, is that they say that 70 percent of the impression that is formed is formed with the volume off. And again, I think — I think our candidates will make a far better impression with the volume off and certainly with the volume on in a general debate with President Trump.
So look, a debate is a very carefully orchestrated thing. I go on Tucker Carlson. I go on Fox and Friends. It can get uncomfortable because when they don’t like where you’re going, they cut you off, they go somewhere else, they throw — they throw a lot of the nonsense out there. But a debate is a very highly structured moment, right? It is, in some sense, fair. It’s not like Sean Hannity can jump in and challenge Bernie Sanders.
So again, with all due respect to the DNC, that’s a huge audience. As they say, you don’t need to persuade your friends, you need to persuade people who disagree with you, so I would have made a different decision.
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