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Fox News Calls Would-Be Obama Assassin ‘Occupy Shooter’ A Day After Authorities Found ‘No Connection’ To Protests

Fox News Calls Would-Be Obama Assassin ‘Occupy Shooter’ A Day After Authorities Found ‘No Connection’ To Protests


Written by Alex Seitz-Wald, ThinkProgress

Yesterday, authorities charged Oscar Ramiro Ortega-Hernandez with attempting to assassinate President Obama after he allegedly fired an assault riffle at the White House. Never missing an opportunity to politicize such an event, Fox News baselessly tried to tie Ortega-Hernandez to the 99 Percent Movement, running a chyron that dubbed the man the “‘Occupy’ shooter.”

Fox & Friends host Gretchen Carlson said the shooter “may have tried to blend in with the Occupy protesters in D.C.,” and asked conservative blogger Michelle Malkin, “What would have happened if a tea party person had tried to do that?” Malkin took the bait, but admitted that “political ideology” was likely not a motivation of the man. Watch it, via Media Matters:

Meanwhile, Fox Nation, the social news site owned by Fox News, ran a headline yesterday blaring: “Man Linked to ‘Occupy’ Protest Charged With Attempted Assassination of Obama.” On Wednesday night’s Special Report — one of Fox’s “straight news” shows — host Bret Baier said, “Hernandez reportedly spent time with the Occupy D.C. protesters.”

The claim was based on a report that authorities searched the Occupy DC encampment in their wide-ranging manhunt for Ortega-Hernandez, a logical step as the site is less than the two blocks from the White House. Unfortunately, for Fox, investigators “found no connection between him and the Occupy protesters,” the Washington Post and the outlets reporter the day before Carlson and Malkin claimed a link. Indeed, by then, Ortega-Hernandez had already been arrested in Pennsylvania, and there were reports that he was motivate by mental illness and hatred for Obama.

This type of baseless smear is perhaps to be expected on conservative blogs and radio shows — many of which leapt on the phony connection to Occupy DC — but one would expect better from the country’s largest cable network, which no doubt should have seen the reports dismissing the connection between Ortega-Hernandez and the Occupy protesters.

It appears Fox has not issued a correction, and the Fox Nation story remains online with the same headline.

This post was originally published by ThinkProgress.


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2:13AM PST on Dec 6, 2011


1:03PM PST on Nov 26, 2011

Sounds like he is just an idiot to me. No one has mentioned his political affiliation.

9:42AM PST on Nov 25, 2011

Bertha S, I'll go there.

He probably listened to the nutcases on Fox who advocate violence towards the government.

By the way, that's the definition of domestic terrorist - and Limbaugh and the recently departed Beck fit the description perfectly.

And how about that recent poll that showed Faux news listeners actually knew less about the world that people who listened to no news at all?

They must have polled you.

9:33AM PST on Nov 25, 2011

Janet K,
Add listeners to MSNBC and CNN and about double it, and that's the number of people who listen to Fox News, fair and balanced!!

9:31AM PST on Nov 25, 2011

No need for any correction by Fox News. I feel this guy probably had some connection with OWS. Down the road, we may find that he was connected to them. What surprises me is that the left on Care2 didn't accuse him of being a Republican/Conservative. How come?

7:50AM PST on Nov 24, 2011

Faux News: We distort, you comply.

5:27PM PST on Nov 21, 2011

More like a 'Teaparty Shooter'. The guy is a Jesus Freak from the Gun Belt - the diametrical opposite, both ideologically and geographically, of the OWS movement. A more accurate headline would be: "Guns N' Bible nut guns for President".

Facts Noose once again doing what they do best: Screaming loudly to drown out the truth.

1:00PM PST on Nov 21, 2011

Why the surprise? That is Fux news for you. Oh dear, I made a spelling error.

4:55AM PST on Nov 21, 2011

I hope there aren't too many more jack asses like Oscar Ramiro Ortega-Hernandez. WHAT WAS HE THINKING! Did he REALLY want to shoot the ONE PRESIDENT who done more than any other to help scum like him?

12:32AM PST on Nov 21, 2011

Fox News does more than "lie". They carefully construct propaganda... at technique aloo used in Nazi Germany, incidentally.

Fox News is viewed as very unethical in other countries- such as Canada- they won't allow Fox News to operate in their country.

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