On the Oct. 5 edition of Fox & Friends Saturday President Obama was criticized for offering to personally pay for a "museum of Muslim culture" during the government shutdown. The only problem is, the story is completely false. In fact, the story appears to have originated from the satirical website the National Report. Thus, the question remains: was the story a deliberate attempt to misinform Fox viewers, or simply a case of fact-checking incompetence? Or perhaps both?
Fox News offered the false “Obama helping Muslim museum” narrative in an attempt to contrast that false narrative with the fact that the Republican National Committee did offer to help support the World War II Memorial after the Republican led government shutdown forced its closure. During that discussion Fox News host Anna Kooiman claimed that while the memorial is closed, "President Obama has offered to pay out of his own pocket for the museum of Muslim culture."
The Republican National Committee is offering to pay for (the World War II Memorial) to keep it open so that the veterans from Honor Flight are going to be able to go and see this because who did it honor? It honored them. It really doesn’t seem fair, especially—and we’re going to talk a little bit later in the show, too, about some things that are continuing to be funded. And President Obama has offered to pay out of his own pocket for the museum of Muslim culture - out of his own pocket - yet it’s the Republican National Committee who’s paying for this.
Critics worry that many Fox News viewers will believe this false story because it plays into a false narrative Fox News has constructed over the years that portrays Obama as a “communist,” a “Muslim,” a "foreign born Kenyan," or any other thing that will frighten the Fox News audience, an audience critics claim is composed of the ignorant, the gullible and the racist.
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