Sen. Elizabeth Warren isn’t backing down from her pledge to not participate in Fox New town halls — even when challenged by former Fox News employees.
During an appearance Thursday morning on ABC’s “The View,” the Massachusetts senator and Democratic presidential candidate was pressed on her decision by several of the show’s co-hosts — particularly Meghan McCain, a former Fox News pundit and daughter of the late Sen. John McCain. McCain said she was “surprised” by Warren’s snub of Fox News, given the 2020 contender’s willingness to campaign in typically Republican-voting states, as well as the ratings success of the network’s town halls with other Democratic presidential candidates.
“I think, with all due respect, it’s a little shortsighted not to speak to the Fox audience,” McCain said. “I used to work at Fox News. I don’t think you think I’m a bad person — at least I hope not.”
“No, of course I don’t,” Warren said.
“Why not give this a second look?” McCain said. “Because I really do think this is a mistake.”
Warren, who announced that she rejected a town hall invitation earlier this month, reiterated her belief that Fox News executives are running a “hate-for-profit” scam, citing recent examples of commentators on the Republican-aligned cable news channel promoting anti-immigrant rhetoric and baseless conspiracy theories. The Bay State senator argued that the increased ratings from Democratic candidate town halls help legitimize the network for the sake of selling advertisements.
“I’m just not gonna give them a full hour to help raise money and help get credibility because they were willing to talk to me for an hour,” she said to cheers from the audience.
McCain remained unpersuaded.
“I was really proud to work at Fox News,” McCain said. “I don’t consider them a racist organization. I will say that there are so many people that watch that are really good people [to which Warren nodded yes in agreement]. And I just think you’re alienating an audience, and, for me, it just sounds like you don’t care about the people who watch Fox News.”
“I care, and I’m going to find a thousand ways to reach out,” Warren said, adding that she has already done 88 town halls and taken 1,100 questions.
“I’ll go all around the country,” she said. “I want to talk to people and find as many ways to reach out as I can. I am just not going to help the Fox News executives raise money off my name.”
Warren is in the minority among her 2020 peers on this issue. With the exception of California Sen. Kamala Harris, nearly every other Democratic presidential candidate has said they’re open to going on the network in the hopes of broadening their reach.
Pressed by co-host Sunny Hostin, Warren appeared to agree with the statement that Fox News does employ some fair journalists. However, she remained firm on her belief that the network’s Democratic town halls could enable advertisers to “ignore the really horrible stuff that they continue to give a platform for.”
“It’s not 100 percent, it’s just they’re giving a platform for, and I just don’t want to be part of that,” Warren said. “I’ll keep reaching out, but not that way.”