- The Washington Times - Friday, January 10, 2020

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, Hawaii Democrat and White House hopeful, defended appearing on Fox News in an interview out Friday by reasoning it gives her a chance to reach President Trump.

Ms. Gabbard sat down for an interview on Hill.TV a day earlier when she was asked to discuss her frequent appearances on the conservative-learning cable news network.

“I think it’s important to be able to share this diversity of views and messages everywhere across the country and not just shut out a huge segment of the population,” Ms. Gabbard said about appearing on Fox News.

“They’re giving me a platform to speak to millions of people — one of whom is Donald Trump — to deliver this really important message about making sure that our leaders, specifically, our president is making decisions that actually serve our national security interests, and I think that’s critical,” the congresswoman continued.

Mr. Trump has made clear his preference for Fox News over rivaling cable television networks, frequently lauding its on-air talent in public while criticizing their competitors.

Newt Gingrich, a former House speaker and surrogate for the president’s 2016 election campaign, said in 2017 that appearing on Fox News programming was among the “most effective ways of communicating with Trump.”

A report last month found that Mr. Trump took to Twitter more than 600 times during 2019 to respond to programming aired on either Fox News or its sister station.

Ms. Gabbard has faced criticism in the past about frequently appearing on Fox News, meanwhile, including during a recent appearance on ABC’s “The View” when co-host Joy Behar referred to the network as “state TV” and “propaganda.”

“I am here to speak to every single American in this country about the unifying leadership that I want to bring as president, not just speak to those who agree with me, but to speak who those who may disagree with me, recognizing that I’m asking for the opportunity to serve every single person in this country,” Ms. Gabbard said at the time.

Not all Democrats in Congress have seen eye to eye with Ms. Gabbard on the issue, however. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York said on Twitter last month that she has decided against sitting for an interview with the network because it has broadcasted “unmitigated racism, without any accountability whatsoever.”

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