During the September 25 broadcast of his nationally syndicated radio show, Fox News host Bill O'Reilly advised listeners to tune in to his Fox News program for "a great segment tonight" on how "CNN has now entered the dark side with Media Matters." O'Reilly further claimed that CNN "will use the far-left assassins," and "will prop them up." Later in the broadcast, O'Reilly referred to "another attack on me by another far-left, loony, smear website that CNN picked up."
On the September 24 edition of CNN's Out in the Open, host Rick Sanchez and CNN contributor Roland Martin discussed O'Reilly's recent statement -- documented by Media Matters for America -- that he was surprised "there was no difference between Sylvia's restaurant and any other restaurant in New York City ... even though [Sylvia's is] run by blacks." Sanchez stated that, during an "animated" phone conversation, O'Reilly denied any "racial intent" in his comments and described the story as "a hatchet job by Media Matters."
On his September 25 program, O'Reilly also said of CNN: "[T]his is so dishonest, it's so ridiculous and you know CNN -- I have never said anything bad about them. I made fun of [host] Larry King a little bit but, you know, in an affectionate way, 'cause they've usually been pretty good." In fact, as Media Matters noted, on the June 12 edition of his Fox News television program, O'Reilly attacked CNN for its coverage of the Iraq war, asserting: "In my opinion, CNN and especially MSNBC delight in showing Iraqi violence because they want Americans to think badly of President Bush." On his radio program the same day, O'Reilly said: "I'm taking an argument that CNN and MSNBC are actually helping the terrorists by reporting useless explosions."
From the September 25 broadcast of Westwood One's The Radio Factor with Bill O'Reilly:
O'REILLY: The kooks, the loons have a louder voice in this country right now than the 80 percent of Americans who know what's going on, and the reason is the Internet -- the mainstream media sympathizing and using the far-left loons, OK, to crash and burn any opposition. See, the real savvy people like [PBS journalist] Bill Moyers and [HDNet host] Dan Rather, you know, the real committed leftists, they don't want to get their hands dirty. They don't.
CNN -- we have a great segment tonight. You gotta watch it 'cause CNN has now entered the dark side with Media Matters, but CNN doesn't want to get its hands dirty. It will use the far-left assassins. It will prop them up. It will give them credibility. And that's why this [Iranian President Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad was so disconcerting, because no far-left loon wanted this guy to come over here.
O'REILLY: A lot of discussion tonight because our lead story is another attack on me by another far-left, loony, smear website that CNN picked up and you're going to want to see this. It is unbelievably absurd. But I got to tell you, when Mother Teresa gets attacked, then I have to put it in perspective. OK, that, you know -- and once in a while I feel sorry for myself, I have to admit it. I try not to. I say, look, this is so dishonest, it's so ridiculous and you know CNN -- I have never said anything bad about them.
I made fun of Larry King a little bit but, you know, in an affectionate way, 'cause they've usually been pretty good. I mean, NBC News is the worst. But now they're so desperate for ratings and they're doing so poorly that they have now jumped into this far-left, defamation Internet world, and it is -- we're going to answer it. We are going to answer it.