Bill O’Reilly had Senator Tom Coburn on his show to address derisive comments he made last week towards Fox News. Coburn had told constituents upset with the recently passed health care reform that “the intention is not to put any one in jail. That makes for good TV news on FOX.” O’Reilly pushed back hard, insisting that nobody on FNC has ever said “you’re going to jail if you don’t buy health insurance” Well, he’s wrong.
Senator Coburn’s comments made some news when, particularly coming off similar comments from conservative David Frum, who claimed that “Fox News…has an interest In marginalizing the GOP.” At the time we asked if this was the start of a larger trend of GOP officials distancing themselves from Fox News.
Well not only has that not become a trend, but Coburn was effectively taken to the wood shed for his comments by Bill O’Reilly. The civil discussion was spirited at times, but O’Reilly’s primary point was that nobody on Fox News has claimed that not following health care would result in prison time:
“We researched to find if anyone on Fox News ever said you’re going to jail if you don’t buy health insurance…nobody’s ever said it…so it seems to be what you did was you used Fox News as a whipping boy when we didn’t qualify there.”
Now had Coburn been prepared for a healthy discussion (and not to kiss a ring) he could have answered “with all due respect Mr. O’Reilly, but your cohort Glenn Beck said nearly those very words in November of 2009.” Through the magic of the Internet, we found the very clip in which Glenn Beck implies jail time for those that don’t follow through with health care reform.
Video of Bill O’Reilly vs. Sen. Tom Coburn:
And now the clip of Glenn Beck discussing jail time on his black board. Update: A commenter wisely points out that, at the time that Beck made this comment, there was a bill that had language in it that was punishable by jail. So Beck does deserve credit for pointing out this absurdity.
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