Obama Blames FOX News for Expected Kentucky Loss

This is a rush transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," May 19, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

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LAURA INGRAHAM, GUEST HOST: In the "Campaign '08" segment tonight: Polls show that Hillary Clinton is expected to crush Senator Obama in Tuesday's Kentucky primary. And in an attempt to explain the anticipated loss, Obama said this to a local newspaper:


BARACK OBAMA: There are a lot of voters who get their news from FOX News. FOX has been pumping up rumors about my religious beliefs or my patriotism or what have you since the beginning of the campaign.


INGRAHAM: FOX News political analyst Juan Williams joins us now from Washington to react to that.

Juan, this is really something. I mean, he goes on with Chris Wallace and acquits himself, I think, pretty well. He seems to have made, you know, inroads going back on to FOX and so forth. Who knows? He'll be on "The O'Reilly Factor" soon again. And now so what gives here?

JUAN WILLIAMS, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Well, I think he's playing to elites, Laura. I think, you know, a lot of people on the elite side, the San Francisco people who he told that, you know, those backwood rubes don't understand, they're clinging to their guns and religion. They also think that somehow those people are being influenced and misguided by FOX News.

And so I think Barack Obama is playing to that base and writing off people who watch FOX and, I think, distorting the truth. Because as you just said, when he's come on FOX, he's been treated very well. I would challenge him to say give me some evidence where you have been mistreated.


WILLIAMS: I think the one case he would cite is one day, I guess it was about a year ago...


WILLIAMS: ...FOX reported that he had attended a madras as a young person growing up. The next day — this was a one-hit, one-day wonder — the next day FOX News corrected it. Is that what he's talking about? I don't — if that's the case, it's such a thin read. I think it makes him look foolish.

You know, I don't think it — there's no substance to it because when he's come on FOX, he has been treated so well. In fact, I would go an added step. I'd say, in fact, there are people on FOX who really don't like Hillary Clinton and have been very rough on Hillary Clinton.


WILLIAMS: And they've almost made Obama like a saint. Oh, yes, treat him well. He is the guy that's come along. And is he going to defeat Hillary Clinton.

INGRAHAM: Well, I just think you saw that when Bill interviewed Hillary. I mean, she got, you know, she got a fair shake.

WILLIAMS: She did.

INGRAHAM: He interviewed McCain, pretty fair shake. I mean, so Obama to me just looks so weak in making this comment after he had gone on with Chris Wallace. You know, been on "FOX & Friends."


INGRAHAM: And it just, to me, after this foreign policy gaffe when he was trying say that well, you know, Iran is in Venezuela. You know, they're not really that dangerous. You know, they're not like the Soviet Union. And Ronald Reagan negotiated with the Soviet Union. I just think that ultimately made him look bad today. And then I was just shocked that that he would, again, try to blame the media when he's on the verge of taking this nomination.

WILLIAMS: Well, you know, but it's just like this. He is not campaigning in Kentucky. He is campaigning in Oregon. He didn't campaign in West Virginia. So I think, you know, wait a second, if he wants people to get to know him...

INGRAHAM: Go there.

WILLIAMS: ...and — yes, exactly. Make an effort. Let people get to know you. Make the case for yourself. Instead, he wants to blame FOX. I think it's a cheap out.

INGRAHAM: And Juan...

WILLIAMS: I think, in fact, people are seeing through him. That's the — he doesn't like people seeing through him. That's it.

INGRAHAM: And Juan, I think people in Mississippi, excuse me, people in Kentucky as the people in West Virginia, they kind of don't feel respected by him at this point, by Obama. And so Obama thinks they're so — these people are so dumb that they could be led around the nose by some news network. And in fact, they're just trying to find the best person who best represents and respects their values. Isn't that really what it is to run a campaign and connect with voters?

WILLIAMS: I think so. And I think, look, you know, the fact is he's got to make an effort to connect with them in such a way as to disabuse them that he's some kind of liberal crazy, you know. And he's got to let them see him for what he is.

He says he's a good Christian. Well, let them see it. He's running an ad down in Kentucky with a big cross behind his head, and yet he's not going down in Kentucky. If he wants to say that people are misjudging him on the basis of Reverend Wright, then go there and talk to them.

But he's not making that effort. And instead, I think it's a real easy cheap out, as I said, to want to point fingers at FOX News or some right-wing conspiracy. I guess that's what's coming next.

INGRAHAM: Well, I'm telling you, it kind of worked for Hillary for a while, but I think that just lost its juice. And Juan, thank you as always. Great to see you.

WILLIAMS: All right, Laura.

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