On Tuesday night’s episode of “The Five,” Fox News personality Bob Beckel, the show’s sole token Democrat, shouted at co-host Eric Bolling for wagging a finger in his face and slapping his arm, warning: “You know, if you do that again you’re fucking toast.”
Bolling’s panel on Tuesday was discussing whether the selection of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) as Romney’s running mate will harm the Republican Party’s chances to retake the White House.
“Why do you take a guy who’s taken the most controversial subject [of ending Medicare], put him on the ticket with you and you disappear and he becomes the focal point of the campaign?” Beckel asked.
The other panelists objected. “They appeared together on ’60 Minutes,’” former Bush administration spokesperson Dana Perino said. “Monday, Ryan did his first solo interview. I mean, that’s how vice presidential roll-outs happen.”
After a few more rebuttals, Bolling chimed in, wagging his finger at Beckel then apparently slapping his arm off-camera. “The only way to fix this is to look at…” he began.
“You know, you do that one more time you’re fucking toast,” Beckel replied, drawing audible gasps from the panel.
He immediately deposited his face into the palm of his right hand upon realizing what he’d just said. “I’m sorry! It didn’t get all the way out!” Beckel added. “…But he just hit me in the arm.”
“I want to let everyone know I smacked Bob, I hit him,” Bolling acknowledged after a commercial break. “I take full, unmitigated responsibility for that.”
While Beckel is almost certainly in hot water with his producers, they can all breathe easily thanks to a Supreme Court ruling earlier this year (PDF) that blocks the Federal Communications Commission from fining stations that inadvertently broadcast banned content deemed to be offensive, including words like the actual f-bomb.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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