You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Fox News Channel Boasts Rare Catch: Democrats at a Town Hall

Fox News Channel’s bold graphics are an ever-present sight on the network’s screen. A direct interview between Hillary Clinton and one of its anchors is not. Tonight, both will appear on its air simultaneously.

The former U.S. Senator and Secretary of State and Democratic candidate for President may not be a familiar foil on Fox News, but that doesn’t mean Bret Baier isn’t ready to interview her. Clinton and rival Bernie Sanders will take part in what has in the recent past been a rare event on the 21st Century Fox-owned outlet, which is generally thought to be more popular among members of the Republican Party. Fox News will broadcast a “town hall” meeting with the two Democratic candidates from Detroit’s Gem Theatre in front of an audience of Michigan voters just one day before the state’s primary.

“It’s not like we don’t cover the Democratic campaign. We cover it every day,” said Baier, in an interview Sunday afternoon. “This is an opportunity for them to reach out to our audience,” he said, which happens to be the largest among cable-news outlets.

The event is the latest effort by cable-news outlets to ride the intense interest in the 2016 campaign to greater glories. Viewers have flocked to various Democratic and Republican debates held by Fox News and its rivals in numbers that easily best the dramas and comedies that show up in broadcast primetime. Fox News’ coverage of an August 6 Republican debate lured nearly 24 million viewers, 7.94 million of them in the advertiser-coveted 25-to-54 audience – an outsize result that has yet to be bested in the current campaign.

While CNN broadcast a Democratic debate Sunday night, Baier said he believes Fox News will find subjects worthy of coverage. “The topics that people care about are the economy and national security,” he said. Fox News producers will “watch the debate and study it and fill in the blanks, perhaps with what was not being covered.”

He credits Fox News “persistence” for the town hall event. The Sanders’ campaign signed on early, he said, though Clinton’s participation was not secured until after Fox News announced it would broadcast the event. “We have tried to get a Democratic debate for a long time. That didn’t work,” said Baier. “We’re interested in talking to Hillary Clinton and hoping it leads to other things down the road.”

Tonight’s event will mark the first time Baier has interviewed Clinton since 2014, he said. That lack of access does not mean his line of questioning to Democratic candidates will be any less informed. “I’ve seen many an interview with them, and obviously followed their campaigns very closely,” said Baier. “It’s not like I’m a stranger.” The one-hour event takes place Monday night at 6 p.m. eastern.

More TV

  • Milo Ventimiglia'Second Act' film premiere, Arrivals,

    Milo Ventimiglia on 'This Is Us' Golden Globes Snub

    “This Is Us” critics and fans were shocked when the NBC hit received no love from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association earlier this week with zero Golden Globes nods. The show, after all, was nominated for three Golden Globes last year, including best television drama. Plus, Sterling K. Brown won the 2018 statue for best [...]

  • Jennifer Lopez

    Jennifer Lopez 'Absolutely' Wants to Direct Film and Television

    Jennifer Lopez epitomizes the phrase “she’s done it all” — but there’s still more that the superstar would like to do. Lopez recently directed her first music video, “Limitless,” the track featured on her new rom-com “Second Act,” and it seems the multi-hyphenate has caught the directing bug. “Absolutely, absolutely,” Lopez responded when asked by [...]

  • Kaya Scodelario

    Kaya Scodelario Joins Netflix Ice Skating Drama 'Spinning Out'

    Kaya Scodelario has signed on for the lead role in the upcoming Netflix drama “Spinning Out,” Variety has learned. Scodelario takes over the role that was previously held by Emma Roberts, who bowed out in October. She stars as Kat Baker, an up-and-coming, high-level single skater who’s about to turn in her skates after a disastrous [...]

  • Kevin Hill

    Dwayne Johnson, Dany Garcia's Seven Bucks Productions Names Kevin Hill Head of TV and Digital Content

    Seven Bucks Productions, the production company co-founded by Dwayne Johnson and Dany Garcia, has named Kevin Hill the head of television and digital development. In this role, Hill will identify, develop and produce new scripted and unscripted projects for Seven Bucks Productions and Seven Bucks Digital Studios. His background includes a six-and-a-half year stint at WME working [...]

  • Cardi B iHeart Radio Music Awards

    iHeartRadio Music Awards Move to Fox

    iHeartMedia and Fox Broadcasting Company today announced the return of the iHeartRadio Music Awards in 2019. The show will air live on Thursday, March 14 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Fox from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, and will also stream online and broadcast live on iHeartMedia radio stations nationwide. Performers will be announced in [...]

  • Best TV Shows of 2018

    The Top 20 TV Episodes of 2018

    This year provided TV fans with one of the most promising pilots in years (“Barry”) and an all-time-great series finale (that of “The Americans”), but there was plenty in between, too. The following are 20 of Variety’s critics’ favorite episodes to have aired all year, across genres. Of note: while episodes of “Atlanta,” “Barry,” “BoJack [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content