In an interview with TIME magazine, Fox News anchor and one of their three Republican debate moderators Bret Baier said he was “surprised” that networks like CNN capitulated to the Republican National Committee’s demand for conservative moderators.
“The Republican National Committee has asked media organizations to partner with conservatives for the debates,” TIME’s Michael Scherer noted. “CNN is bringing in Hugh Hewitt. At Fox, you’re doing it with three news anchors. Is that the RNC acknowledging that ‘fair and balanced’ has a conservative tilt?”
But Baier revealed that Fox News wasn’t bringing in a conservative ringer because they argued strenuously with the RNC over the provision. “We didn’t like that stipulation from the beginning, and so we pushed back pretty hard because we wanted what we used last time to be our template.”
“I’m surprised that the other networks went along with it,” he admitted. “We wouldn’t.”
Among Baier’s other revelations is that Fox News never seriously considered having more than ten candidates on the debate stage, and that he has “woken up in cold sweats wondering how I’m going to deal with a Donald Trump who’s not listening.”
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