16 Feb 2011

Fox News Incredible Deception on Ron Paul CPAC Win

Conspiracy, Ron Paul 54 Comments

This is absolutely incredible. I have tried to figure out if this is a reverse hoax (i.e. a fake YouTube setting up Fox News), but I don’t see how.

I realize it’s a bit long, but I encourage you to sit through the whole thing. By the end, you will realize why all the elements were necessary to appreciate the enormity of what Fox apparently did. (HT2 LRC)

According to some of my critics in the comments of this post, we affiliated with the Mises Institute are paranoid and overly sensitive when it comes to the treatment of Ron Paul. I’m sure you guys can explain why Ron Paul did something to earn the above treatment. I mean really, if he hadn’t gone to CPAC in the first place, this wouldn’t have happened, so when you think about it, he asked for it….

Seriously, there’s no way around this, right? Even though the guy at the podium has a similar outfit, it is clearly different footage because in one clip he has something around his neck, but not in the other.

54 Responses to “Fox News Incredible Deception on Ron Paul CPAC Win”

  1. Dan says:

    This is just so messed up but I’m sure someone will come up with some excuse for it. Fox clearly used the video of a second reading of the winners because the crowd didn’t react the way they wanted during the official announcement of him being winner. Might of been third or fourth reading for all we know.

    It was easy to see the video at the end of this clip was the first announcment. He pushed a button to move to the next slide showing the results and that is when people went nuts for Ron Paul. Nobody knew the results before he did that in the second video. The one they showed on Fox, the crowd was booing and cheering right as he started to announce the winner. They already knew the final results in the video that they decided to show.

    Has the mainstream media not caught on to youtube yet? Are they trying to make sure every kid with a computer can easily see that what they spin is just propaganda? Its got to be tough defending this kind of behavior.

  2. Dan says:

    Its even worse than what I was thinking. I’m an idiot and didn’t realize that they played the results from 2010 instead of 2011 on Fox. I was giving them more credit than they even deserved. I guess I didn’t realize how stupid these guys are or at least how stupid they think their viewers are.

  3. Jeremy H. says:

    Perhaps they will just blame it on some intern, which is not completely implausible but very weak. Just like:




  4. Sealander says:

    I was at CPAC 2011 and the 2011 video/audio was accurate. Unbelievable.

  5. Bob Roddis says:

    Last night, O’Reilly and Karl Rove were explaining that Ron Paul can’t win because so many of his supporters are birthers and 9/11 truthers.

    But somehow, they failed to present a short but reasonable explanation of the ABCT. Imagine that.

    • Daniel Kuehn says:

      Karl Rove is a political strategist… do you think ABCT plays into the likelihood of a Paul victory?

      My guess is it has less to do with his victory prospects than the Alex Jones crowd that forms a non-trivial portion of his base. Since Rove is all about Republican electoral prospects, why would you expect him to reflect on ABCT?

  6. Daniel Kuehn says:

    OK, but Bob, you’ve gotta understand this… when most people watch Fox and worry about stuff like this, it’s accusations about socialism, Marxism (“Joseph Stalin without the bloodshed” was a good one), opposition to the Constitution, sympathizing with terrorism, wanting a weaker America, wanting to deliberately destroy the economy, wanting death panels, not caring about the destruction of the state of Israel, being racist, fascism, targeting doctors, targeting scientists, targeting every day USDA employees.

    So – yes – I, like you, would have prefered that they use the 2011 video and given Paul the cheers he deserved.

    But I can’t muster much more than that sentence. If you can really use the word “enormity” when describing this, then you’re really proving my point.

    Let me put it this way – you see this as a terrible thing – I wish all Fox did was switch out applause audio tracks on Obama.

  7. Cody says:

    Gee, FNC is really unfair. It’s a good thing all of the other networks are so much nicer to Paul.

    Can we be honest? If the conservative electorate is going to be swayed by who they think got a louder cheer at a CPAC straw poll announcement, what hope are we holding out for the whole point of Paul’s message getting through?

    The unmistakable point of RP is that the guy has no charisma and no gimmick, and still thinking, informed people flock to him. Because he isn’t a facade.

    I guess my point is, good. I would prefer ignorant Fox-lackeys not be rooting for the same guy I am. It might give me doubts. Ron still got 30% of the poll.

  8. Blackadder says:

    I disagree with Daniel on this one. Showing the wrong footage and then doing an entire story premised on a misimpression created by the wrong footage is a big problem. If the above video is accurate, someone needs to be fired (the fact that worse stuff happens to Obama, even if true, is hardly a defense).

    So you’re right, Ron Paul doesn’t get a fair shake in the media. But for that very reason he ought to try extra hard not to give his opponents ammunition. I was reading the autobiography of Lech Walesa (the Polish anti-communist dissident) a while back, and in the book he describes how he was careful in what he did and said not to give the Communist regime opportunities to attack him. It’s not like he expected the state media to treat him fairly; they did things that go far beyond anything we see in the American context. But he didn’t want to make it easy on them.

    • Daniel Kuehn says:

      Well the story was premised on the reality that there was a lot of concern about Paul’s victory among conservatives in both years, was it not? Nobody is disputing the fact that a contingent of CPAC attendees were upset about this, are they?

      re: “the fact that worse stuff happens to Obama, even if true, is hardly a defense”

      It’s not a defense, you’re right. I never attempted a defense of the behavior. Quite the contrary, I said that Fox was wrong to do this, and I agreed with Bob on this incident. All I’m adding is that it doesn’t exactly move me to outrage.

      • bobmurphy says:

        Daniel, c’mon. Please don’t argue that this is really not that big of a deal. They showed footage of one thing, and told their viewers it was footage of something else. That is freaking creepy.

        That is qualitatively worse than using “death panel” to describe ObamaCare. To come up with something comparable, Fox would have to show a clip of the Surgeon General saying, “This proposal would lead to a lot of deaths,” and then cutting to Obama to ask him what he thinks. Then it turns out the Surgeon General was talking about deploying predator drones to Afghanistan, not Obamacare.

        • Daniel Kuehn says:

          I mean, it’s creepy I guess but it’s Fox. This is not the first time they’ve shown the wrong video or spliced it in misleading ways.

          I absolutely do not think denying Paul an applause line even approaches accusing supporters of health reform of capriciously ruling whether granny gets to live or die. The fact that you could suggest that is incredible to me, Bob.

          What is the damage of this? It looks like he has less excited supporters than he actually has. BFD. Maybe it’s just that I never expected Fox to be any better than this in the first place.

          • Dan says:


            I would’ve expected you to at least be objective on this one.

            I guess its no big deal when the media gets caught lying to their audience and framing a story that would clearly mislead them. It’s not a BFD unless DK’s fave Obama is the target.

            I guess the BFD defense makes since coming from him after hearing DK say Ron Paul is one of the elites in the DiLo post. That makes me believe it’s just a republican vs democrat thing to him. He’s on team D and only get riled up if they are in the story.

          • Daniel Kuehn says:

            1. Obama is not my “fav” although I think he’s one of the good ones.

            2. I’m definitely not on “team D”, nor to I see this as a two party thing.

            3. I’m agreeing they wronged Paul! I just can’t see how this can outrage people so much. It’s not a Paul vs. Obama thing. I didn’t post anything or worry much about it when they cut the applause out of Obama’s West Point video. it was a douchey thing to do, but in the grand scheme of things – BFD.

        • Daniel Kuehn says:

          They did it with Palin: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/washington/2009/11/fox-news-rolls-wrong-video-of-palin-crowds-will-heads-roll-too.html

          They did it with Hillary:

          They did it with Sherrod:

          They did it with Obama (this is similar to the Paul case of denying him an applause audio and then saying the West Point cadets didn’t approve of Obama):

          They even edit videos that edit other videos that accuse Planned Parenthood of facilitatying sex trafficking (also in the “worse than denying Ron Paul an applause line” category):

          Are you starting to see why I’m not especially up in arms over this, because (1.) this isn’t exactly shocking coming from Fox, and (2.) denying Paul and applause line isn’t something that strikes me as being particularly consequential relative to the other hit-jobs that happen on that channel.

          I am in agreement with you – just not too excitable over it!

          • bobmurphy says:

            DK, I looked at the Hillary Clinton one to see if it’s in the same ballpark, and I don’t think it is.

            You are totally misunderstanding this.

            We’re not griping because Fox “denied an applause line” to RP. Fox showed something that was from a year earlier and reported that it was what just happened. You honestly don’t see how that is a million times more dishonest than simply cutting away in an interview, to present somebody out of context?

            Let me try it this way, DK: What Fox did here, is a million times worse than what Rep. Clay and Dana Milbank did to DiLorenzo. So do you see this isn’t just me pouting over RP?

            Same thing with that Sherrod stuff, right? I never got into that story too much, but my understanding is that they took her remarks out of context. But it’s not that they showed something as footage from yesterday, when in fact it was footage from a year ago.

            I repeat, what Fox did here is freaking creepy. The other stuff was just sleazy.

            • bobmurphy says:

              You know what DK I need to backtrack a bit, because my earlier analogy with the Surgeon General wasn’t right. If that is what had happened, then I would agree with you, the sleaze move would have been comparable to the Hillary Clinton thing you just showed.

              But what Fox did here is much worse than that. To repeat, it’s sleazy but not an outright lie to show a clip of someone out of context. But to show a clip of something and say, “This is what just happened,” when in fact it was a year ago, is qualitatively worse.

              So I guess to fix the analogy, it would be showing Obama saying, “We are going to bomb your country if you don’t shape up,” when he was talking to people in Afghanistan, but reporting that this is what Obama said to a crowd in Israel. And then freaking out that Obama wants to bomb Israel.

              (Incidentally, how in the world can you still support Obama? What more would he have to do on civil liberties to make you change your mind?)

          • Daniel Kuehn says:

            Bob, this whole thing just strikes me as so ridiculously inconsequential that I’m having a tough time even being sure it was purposeful.

            If it was purposeful, my reaction wouldn’t be “that’s sleazy” – my reaction would be “what was the point of that?”

      • Blackadder says:

        Well the story was premised on the reality that there was a lot of concern about Paul’s victory among conservatives in both years, was it not?

        I don’t think they even mentioned that Paul had won in previous years.

      • knoxharrington says:

        I thought the Fox News motto was “We report, you decide” rather than “We decide, then report.”

  9. Ash says:

    I’m going to post here what I’ve been posting everywhere else, and that is that CNN has done a very similar thing.

    Here is the ‘official’ CPAC announcement, and please watch the whole thing and note exactly at whose name what noise is being made:

    And now be shocked at what CNN has done:

    • bobmurphy says:

      I didn’t watch the whole thing, so maybe I’m missing something Ash, but at least CNN showed the actual footage of the event. What Fox did was far far far worse. Like, I still can’t believe they did that, knowing they could be caught.

      • Ash says:

        Well then allow me to spoil it for you: the boos you hear in the CNN as Ron Paul is announced were in fact clearly spliced in from when Mit Romney’s name was announced.

        To me at least that is just as bad.

        • bobmurphy says:

          Ha ha OK that’s pretty bad.

          • bobmurphy says:

            And it’s funny, because when I watched that I thought, “Huh, in the other video it sounded like there was more applause.”

      • Gene Callahan says:

        “Like, I still can’t believe they did that, knowing they could be caught.”

        Right! In fact, knowing they WILL be caught is more like it.

        So, it it’s unbelievable that someone would deliberately do that… then they didn’t. It was a mistake. As Fox News said today in their apology.

        • Dan says:

          Did you expect them to say anything else? Hey, we tried to pull a fast one on our audience but you caught us with that dang YouTube again. We’ll do better next time so we get away with it.

          • Gene Callahan says:

            I just found myself lecturing Tuesday to the wrong version f a Powerpoint slideshow. Mistakes like this are easy to make. I don’t say we should merely believe them… as Bob himself pointed out, it was *unbelievable* that they did this on purpose. That’s correct. Therefore, they didn’t.

        • Desolation Jones says:

          What I find hard to believe is that Fox would try to pull the stunt right in front of Ron Paul. Fox would have to be taking a huge gamble to risk being called on it by Ron Paul himself on live tv. Why would Fox assume that Ron Paul hadn’t heard the real reaction and then play the fake one in front of him? Unless they asked if he watched it beforehand and and it was all part of the conspiracy.

        • bobmurphy says:

          Well, on the one hand DK is arguing that this is so commonplace for Fox that he doesn’t even get my problem. On the other hand, Gene is saying this is so unbelievable that he doesn’t think it was intentional. You two work it out, and then I’ll debate the winner.

          • Daniel Kuehn says:

            Fox News: making the unbelievably stupid commonplace.

            They’re alternatively sloppy and deceptive. What I think both Gene and I are saying is that this is so sloppy and so inconsequential that it’s hard to believe it’s intentional.

          • bobmurphy says:

            No DK you can’t have it both ways. In light of the videos you guys have presented, I am willing to now admit that this is nothing new; I had no idea Fox was so underhanded.

            But don’t tell me this wasn’t intentional. You think it’s a coincidence that Fox “accidentally” shows the wrong footage in a way that helps Palin, hurts Obama, and hurts Ron Paul? Give me a break.

  10. david says:

    Ron Paul is a “fiery” Texas Republican. Forthright, yes. But fiery?

  11. Matthew Murphy says:

    And people wonder why *some* Paul supporters get a little noisy and perhaps slightly rude. Look at how we are treated.

  12. Citizen X says:

    Funny how every libertarian website I visit seems to be dominated by multiple comments from Daniel Kuehn. I guess having a cushy job at a Leviathan loving, federally funded, LBJ created “think tank” full of welfare/warfare state apologists and snooty neolib elitists leaves a lot of spare time for web browsing. So when your not monkey wrenching obscure libertarian websites Daniel, are you actually doing anything productive? Might I suggest getting off the Federal Government gravy train and getting a usefull job like say, plumbing or handyman. I’ve got a leaky bathtub faucet that really needs some work.

    • Gene Callahan says:

      Citizen X, a enthusiastic supported of intelligent, thoughtful engagement with those of differing opinions.

    • Daniel Kuehn says:

      What do I dominate? Occassionally on Cafe Hayek, although I haven’t contributed a ton there for a while (a couple weeks ago there was a thread or two I was pretty active in).

      Where else do you see me? Econlib once in a while?

      Most of my commentary goes on before or after work or during my lunch break anyway (not this particular comment, but it’s a little slow today).

    • Dan says:

      I find myself in disagreement with most of DK views on these posts but I wouldnt even contribute here if it was just a bunch of libertarians giving each other high fives. One of the things I like about this site is the differing views. Forces all of us to improve our arguments.

    • bobmurphy says:

      I detest being the internet nanny, but Citizen X this is a bit over the top. In the future please just focus on how ridiculous DK’s arguments are.

      And anyway, isn’t it a good thing if he spends his work hours here, battling Captain Freedom, rather than touting the benefits of solar panel funding?

  13. Cody says:

    I’m going to be honest.

    Dr. Murphy, you are way over the top on this.

    Given that they aired the wrong clip on purpose, what was the point? What was their aim?

    Why, then, would they correct it and apologize?

    When they originally aired the wrong clip, they then had Ron on the show. They Joked about the fact that the booer was probably Trump. This wasn’t a hostile interview.

    There is no possible damage from this mistake. What can it have done to congressman Paul or his image? Why would they interview him if they were interested in destroying him?

    Honestly, today on the way home I heard people on NPR talking about how the reality is that the housing bubble was created by business people who were “Free Market Evangelists.” That the free market is the culprit behind America’s financial collapse, and the state was a hapless victim. Of free markets. On NPR.

    That’s fine, though. Once we get everyone to stop listening to Fox, this battle is won.

    Beyond everything, do you think this was a hard mistake to make? That an editor or writer looked up “CPAC Straw Poll Announcement” in a footage database and couldn’t possibly have grabbed the same exact footage from the same exact announcement one year ago, on accident?

    If the event name were different, if the poll name were different, if the the poll winner was different, if sequentially this wasn’t the very last event and poll of the same name before the most recent (if they skipped a year or two), if there was a different presenter, if he had changed his hairstyle, there might begin to be an argument that this was a heinous travesty intended to ruin Ron Paul for all time (despite the unmitigated inanity of the event, and its utter meaninglessness to any political reality).

    But, no. The best we can do is that in the one shot the presenter has something around his neck, and in the other, he doesn’t?

    I’m pretty sure someone just goofed.

    I personally love to go all “LIES!! DAMNED LIES!!!” on the media, but I think you guys got this one wrong.

    • Jeremy says:

      They sure do “goof” a lot over at Fox.

      I mean its not like they’ve been shown to have a bias against Ron Paul or anything. There certainly wasn’t an instance where Paul met or exceeded the requirements for their presidential primary debate (even out raising and polling a few who were invited) and Fox news denied his participation…….oh wait……that’s exactly what happened……..

    • bobmurphy says:

      Cody, I am going to be honest too. I can’t believe some of you guys don’t see how much the “conservative” media does everything it can to downplay the importance of the straw poll results, etc.

      Of course they have to interview Ron Paul after he wins. But I am saying that they decided, “Well, let’s make sure we mock the heck out of him. Remember, the narrative is that he can’t win, he only has support among 500,000 teenagers who spend all day on the internet.”

      Cody, what did that lady mean when the segment opened, and she said, “Out of nowhere, Ron Paul wins?” Since he won lost year too, it was hardly “out of nowhere.” If Alex Jones had won the CPAC poll, that would have been out of nowhere.

      The thing about the shirt wasn’t my smoking gun for why it was intentional, rather it was my smoking gun that yes these were different events. I.e. I originally held open the possibility that the guy made two announcements during CPAC 2011, and that the YouTube people were actually unfairly painting Fox as showing something from a different time.

      I don’t know how TV rooms work. But I would be really surprised if they take footage from something that just happened, then dump it into the database of “All Footage,” and then go to pull it out with a search like “CPAC straw poll” instead of “the thing I just put in there yesterday.”

      I am not saying it’s literally impossible that this was an accident, I am just saying I would bet $10,000 at even odds that it’s not.

    • bobmurphy says:

      Cody, if I may paraphrase you, you’re saying something like this: “In the grand scheme, Fox is our friend. NPR is the real enemy. Let’s stop whining about Sean Hannity and focus on Van Jones and Hillary Clinton.”

      But that’s not right. There is no way NPR is ever going to endorse Ron Paul, because he opposes everything they believe in (except maybe civil liberties among some of their listeners).

      In contrast, Ron Paul actually should be the conservative media’s hero. If they weren’t so enthralled with war, he would be. That’s what’s really wrong with him: he doesn’t like the US military bombing people.

      If Rush Limbaugh et al. told their listeners how awesome Ron Paul was, if Fox gave him sympathetic treatment like they do to Sarah Palin etc., he would have a much better shot. I’m not “blaming the ref,” and I’m not saying he would be president if not for Bill O’Reilly.

      Rather, I’m saying that you are (in my opinion) wrong when you think this is harmless stuff. On the contrary, sabotaging an actual proponent of small government and the Constitution, is what leads to our fake “debate” in this country between Republicans and Democrats.

  14. Kathryn says:

    The entire premise of the segment was the Ron Paul was booed! They said it before they showed the clip, then played the clip, then said it after, then asked Ron Paul about it. Are you trying to tell me the Fox did not have a reporter *at* CPAC when they announced the strawpoll results? Or that that person could have mistakenly thought that Ron Paul was booed when in fact there was a lot of cheering? How could this be a mistake? *That* is unbelievable.

    What does this accomplish? The #1 response I got from registered Republicans when I tried to convince them they should vote in the primary for Ron Paul was: “He won’t win.” Most voters just want to vote for the winner, as if it’s a horse race. So the seed is planted in whoever’s mind that Ron Paul is not popular and therefore can’t win. Even if the same person saw the apology the next day, they’re just going to believe that “it was a mistake.” Also note that the apology did not replay the actual clip with the cheering. Most of this demographic will not be on the websites that are exposing this blatant deception and will continue to think what Fox tells them to think.

  15. Dan says:

    Of course it is possible they made an honest mistake but I don’t think it’s likely. Why not show the real video in the apology? I mean they show the video with booing and cheering and the host can’t help but smirk at the reaction from that 2010 video as he’s asking Ron Paul about it. They could have shown their viewers that what happened this year was thunderous applause but they didn’t, not even in the apology. Also why would they think he was booed in 2011? The video from this year is applause that lasts for a full minute. Who came up with the idea that he was booed in the first place and decided to run the video? You believe they just happened to be looking for footage of the announcement and they accidentally pulled up the wrong video? Then they were like “hey did you know Ron Paul was booed in this video, you should use that in the interview”. I doubt it.

  16. Leo says:

    THIS STORY BECAME A TOP YAHOO STORY!!! Maybe that’s not a big deal to many of you, but I usually visit yahoo to waste some time and look at their news stories daily…

  17. Leo says:


    Watch this video. They downplay Paul and say that the MORE IMPORTANT result was that Romney got 2nd place! And this was live from CPAC.


  18. Tony Garcia says:

    Fox News involved in a GOP conspiracy to shun Libertarians?!?! That’s unpossible! 😉

  19. Ash says:

    I’m still confused why the clearly intentional deception by CNN is going totally unnoticed. Is it because it’s so much cooler to saw Fox is the worst station in the world?

    • Dan says:

      I’ll be right there with you if you want to bash CNN or MSNBC. All of MSM is a joke.