Mickey Kaus posted a long, detailed critique of the coverage of President Obama’s unconstitutional amnesty on FOX News at the Daily Caller this week. Kaus criticized FOX News for not leading the opposition to amnesty. “Fox is supposed to be the feisty opposition network. You’d think it would wage a rousing campaign against Obama’s executive actions on immigration, which are surely wildly unpopular among its viewers, both because of their ends (de facto legalizing of illegals) and their means (presidential overreach).”
“You’d think that,” he wrote. “But you would be wrong.” Kaus judged FOX News to be derelict on amnesty.
Tucker Carlson is editor-in-chief of the Daily Caller as well as a commentator and weekend host on FOX News. Exercising his editorial prerogative, Carlson pulled Kaus’s column shortly after it was posted. He explained to Kaus that FOX News could not be “trashed” at the Daily Caller. Kaus immediately terminated his relationship with the Daily Caller.
Kaus’s column raises a question that extends beyond the subject of his column or the facts of this case. The dominance of FOX News within the sphere of center-right news and commentary is overwhelming. What significant conservative organ of news and opinion does not have a close relationship with FOX News through ownership (the Wall Street Journal) or contractual relationship with reporters or editors or columnists? Not many.
Does the dominance of FOX News constrain conservative criticism of FOX News itself? It is a question that warrants further discussion in light of Kaus’s case.