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August 11, 2011

Megyn Kelly on Good Looks, Fox News & Jon Stewart

megyn kelly

Photo Credit: Fox News/2MK Studio

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But isn't that part of the job? Isn't that what politicians have to do?
I suppose so. If I were Sarah Palin, would I want to sit in an interview with someone who was secretly out to get me? Probably not. But as a journalist, do I want candidates to make themselves available to all of us? Yes, I do. I think it's a good idea.

Do you think that ideologues like Glenn Beck have harmed Fox's reputation as a legitimate source of unbiased news?
If Fox had promoted Glenn Beck as a straight newsman who would be delivering the nightly update, like Bret Baier, then yes. But it was clear from the beginning — and it remains clear — that Glenn Beck is an opinion host. He doesn't report as a journalist and isn't making any attempt to be a journalist.

Do you think Fox is biased?
No. Fox News covers stories that some other news outlets won't cover. We ask some questions that other news outlets wouldn't ask. And sometimes that's perceived as bias by people who've grown up in a world where there are only liberal outlets.

What's it like to be a frequent and favorite target of Jon Stewart?
I find Jon Stewart very funny — except for when he's making fun of me. [laughs] The problem with Stewart is when people think The Daily Show is actual news, or that he made an attempt to be fair, which I think he would freely admit that he doesn't.

He has called you out for being a hypocrite. For example, you challenged a guest who accused your network of using Nazi rhetoric in reference to Democrats. Then Stewart ran clips of your colleagues doing exactly that. Is he taking you out of context, or do you take his point?
I had never said it didn't happen. My guest asserted that it happened every night on Fox News, and I said, "That's not true." And then Fox critics put words in my mouth and tried to criticize me for them. Jon Stewart definitely takes [things I say] out of context for humorous effect. And I think he would admit that. But it's really one of those can't-lose situations because every time he mocks me, it increases my visibility and bumps my ratings. So mock away!

Have you ever regretted anything you've said on camera?
No, I haven't. Listen, I've been on the air, every day, for several hours, for several years now. I've said stupid things. I've made mistakes. I've used language I'd like to take back. I'm not perfect. But in terms of regretting — no, that's a waste of time.

Now that Glenn Beck has left the network, there's talk that you're up for his slot, which would make you one of cable news' most influential players. Are you game for that?
It's not like I'm not going to consider it if they approach me. But it would require a lot of soul-searching because I really do like the setup I have now. I spend mornings with my family, then I go in, put on a good two-hour program, and I'm home in time for dinner. It's a pretty good deal.

I think it's fair to say that you, Bill O'Reilly, and Sean Hannity are quintessentially Fox News personalities. But could you ever see yourself at another network?
Sure. Television can be a very fickle place. One day you're the bride, the next, the bridesmaid, the next, divorced altogether. So if Fox decides I'm washed up and have to go someplace else, then I'll go someplace else.

Follow the author of this story on Twitter at @YaelKohen.

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