UPDATED: Fox issues very rare apology!
By Brad Friedman on 3/16/2009, 9:23pm PT  

Wow, does the dishonesty never end at Fox "News"? Well, we all know the answer to that one, but as Ben Dimiero at Media Matters noted in email, "this is ridiculous, even by Fox News standards".

In a package with Martha MacCallum on Fox's Live Desk today, suggesting that Administration officials who once criticized John McCain's assertion that "the fundamentals of the economy are strong" have now changed their tune, they played some clips purported to be from "recent interviews this weekend." Included in those clips, is Joe Biden declaring "the fundamentals of the economy are strong." (Video at bottom of this article.)

Trouble is a) Biden's statement was six months ago, when he was on the campaign trail and b) it was taken completely out of context, as Biden was quoting McCain's statement which he was in the process of criticizing!

Biden's actual in-context statement to a campaign rally in September 2008 was...

Ladies and gentlemen, I believe that's why John McCain could say with a straight face, as recently as this morning --- and this is a quote: "The fundamentals of the economy are strong." That's what John says. He says that "we've made great progress economically" in the Bush years.

Ladies and gentlemen, ladies and gentlemen, I could walk from here to Lansing, and I wouldn't run into a single person who thought our economy was doing well, unless I ran into John McCain.

Folks, John just doesn't get it.

And now watch the video to see what Fox did with that statement...


Media Matters' full coverage, including all of the pertinent transcripts, is here. Wow. That's impressive. Even for Fox!


UPDATE 3/17/09: Fox issues a rare apology. An actual one, as opposed to a sorta-one, which is more their style when they even deighn to note egregious "errors". Go figure...

MacCALLUM: Yesterday during a segment on the recent change in tone from President Obama’s economic team, we inadvertently used a piece of video of Vice President Biden saying “the fundamentals of the economy are strong.” This video was from the campaign trail when the vice president was a candidate and was actually quoting Sen. John McCain. When we get something wrong we admit it. We did so yesterday, and for that we apologize.

Of course, when they "get something wrong" they don't usually "admit it". But I'm glad to see they did this time. What a nice change of pace.

ThinkProgress's Faiz Shakir notes: "These are the types of mistakes we can expect to arise when a television network is so hungry to make a partisan point...It ended up fabricating the facts to bolster a false right-wing argument. It’s not fair and it’s not balanced."