Fox News on Tuesday issued a statement standing behind network host Jesse Watters, after unelected bureaucrat Dr. Anthony Fauci called for Watters’ immediate firing over comments the host made at a Turning Point USA political conference this week.
Watters implored conservatives to engage in “Project Veritas”-style journalism against Fauci and others, including Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren (MA), explaining how to execute a “set up” question, and then go in for the rhetorical “kill shot.” Watters also told attendees to be “respectful” when they encounter political figures.
Fauci seemed to suggest on CNN airwaves that Watters was not using metaphors, but speaking literally, and trashed the host for his choice of words, The Daily Wire reported.
Fox News on Tuesday said in a statement to The Daily Wire that “it’s more than clear” that Watters was not being literal, and noted the controversy surrounding Fauci’s apparent ties to gain-of-function research.
“Based on watching the full clip and reading the entire transcript, it’s more than clear that Jesse Watters was using a metaphor for asking hard-hitting questions to Dr. Fauci about gain-of-function research and his words have been twisted completely out of context,” the statement read.
Partial transcript of Watters comments on Fauci can be viewed, below:
You got to ambush a guy like Fauci. OK, this is how you do these ambushes like O’Keefe. You got to be respectful because they’ll turn the tables on you and you can’t have it blow up in your face. So if you see Fauci out and about and you know he’s coming to town, this is how you approach. First, you identify yourself, you say, My name’s Thompson. I’m from da da da da da address. Do you mind Dr. Fauci if I ask you a few questions? You say No, you were polite. So if he says No, no, no, no. Not right now you say No, no, no. We’re going to address this right now. That’s how you turn the tables and you start with an aggressive posture. Then you hit him with the first question. The first question can’t be a yes or no question because his answer can just be yes or no. You got to elicit. It has to be a how or why. So what you do with Anthony Fauci is, you say Dr. Fauci, why did you lie? OK? Why did you lie? I love that question. Why did you lie when you said that you didn’t fund gain of function research at the Wuhan lab? Now Fauci, you did, funded it. So he’s either going to deny it, he can’t deny it because he’s going to lie again, or he’s going to be just going to speak gibberish. You let him talk. Get it on tape with your iPhone or your buddies iPhone. I don’t have time to get this technicality on it, but you let him talk. And here’s your follow up. Here’s a little trick of the trade. Keep a little document in your pocket. All right. This is the grant that funded the research. It’s in your pocket and you can print it out. It’s on the internet. You know what it is, or if it’s a blank sheet of paper, you hold the sheet of paper up for effect. You said, I have your grant right here, Dr. Fauci. You wave it in his face. You wave that in his face for the camera, for flare. And then you read it to him. Right? You say it says right here. 2014, eight hundred grand. This is your agency. Why do you continue to lie doctor and you wave it? Now that’s – I mean, this guy’s scrambling at this point. You have the goods, you have the goods because he’s been able to dodge and weave on ABC and NBC. No one’s ever hit him in the face like this. Not even Rand Paul has been able to get in his face and point with a grant in his face. So then he’s in trouble. Now you go in for the kill shot. The kill shot with an ambush, deadly, because he doesn’t see it coming. This is when you say. Dr. Fauci, you funded risky research at a sloppy Chinese lab, the same lab that sprung this pandemic on the world. You know why people don’t trust you, don’t you? Oh, he is dead. He’s dead. He’s done. Now you do that in 30 seconds. So you need 30 seconds. Now you get that footage to us. You get it to Fox. You get it to human events. You get it to Breitbart. You get it The Daily Caller. You get it to the Turning Point pipeline. Imagine Tucker Carlson teases out of the A block coming up, brave college student confronts Lord Fauci at dinner. Exclusive footage right back. Give us that. That’s what we want. That changes the whole conversation to the country. I’ve authorized it. Just make sure it’s legal.”