Bill O’Reilly and Jorge Ramos clash on immigration and pro-Republican ‘bias’
Fox News host Bill O’Reilly battled his Fusion counterpart Jorge Ramos on Friday for suggesting O’Reilly let pro-Republican bias into his work.
“We all have biases,” Ramos told O’Reilly. “You have your own biases, whether you’re covering Obamacare or Benghazi, or supporting the Republican Party [more than] the Democratic Party.”
“Whoa whoa whoa whoa whoa,” O’Reilly said. “Have you ever seen me do a softball interview with anybody?”
“I’ve seen you do tough interviews,” Ramos responded. “But I’ve seen you also supporting Republicans more than Democrats. That’s fine, but we just have to be honest and transparent when we do our job.”
“Maybe editorially, but never in an interview,” O’Reilly said.
Ramos told O’Reilly that he was a registered independent and was “non-partisan,” citing his criticism of both President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) regarding the political delay on immigration reform.
“But I’m a registered indepdentent, too,” O’Reilly responded. “I’ve never done a softball interview in my life, on this program or anyplace else, and that’s 37 years. What’s going on, though, here in the United States — and I’m glad you brought this up — is access.”
O’Reilly gave Ramos credit for criticizing U.S. journalists in an interview with Politico, saying they were “very cozy with power,” and complained about not getting an interview with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).
“The congresswoman knows that I’ll ask her tough questions,” O’Reilly told Ramos.
“But you do get Republicans, right?” Ramos responded. “And you can pressure Republicans.”
“I can get some, but not all,” O’Reilly said. “I never got Dick Cheney until he had his heart book. We never got John Boehner. You got Boehner.”
The two also clashed over their idea of “sane” immigration reform, since Ramos has advocated for a legalization process for the 11 million undocumented immigrants residing in the U.S.
“If Republicans don’t do something about it — and Boehner is not doing his job, Republicans are not doing their job — they are going to lose 2016, and Hillary Clinton’s going to be very happy,” Ramos said.
O’Reilly then attempted to use Ramos, a naturalized immigrant from Mexico, as a counterpoint to more comprehensive reforms.
“It worked out for you,” O’Reilly said. “You’re successful here in America, and it worked out. The other side says — primarily Republican — you don’t reward people who, even though you’re right, there has been benefits from illegal immigration. Big business has benefitted, agriculture has beneffited. [But] you don’t reward them with automatic citizenship.”
Watch the discussion, as aired on Fox News on Friday, below.