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Rupert Murdoch: Fox News 'absolutely saved' the Republican Party
Oli Scarff/Getty Images
Oli Scarff/Getty Images

Fox News surely helped boost the Tea Party to prominence, giving it ample air time back in the early years of the Obama presidency. And as Tea Party-aligned lawmakers moved into Congress, squabbling with the GOP establishment and opening a divisive rift within the party — see: government shutdown — many pinned some of the blame for the budding civil war on the network itself.

In a new interview with Fortune, NewsCorp chief Rupert Murdoch — whose media empire includes Fox News — says the criticism is way off base. On the contrary, he argues that Fox has helped the modern GOP.

I think it has absolutely saved it. It has certainly given voice and hope to people who didn't like all that liberal championing thrown at them on CNN. By the way, we don't promote the Tea Party. That's bullshit. We recognize their existence. [Fortune]

The Tea Party's existence, though, is an increasingly tenuous one. Polls have shown support for the movement dwindling, and the party establishment is finally pushing back against it, with GOP leadership and traditional donors trying to squelch insurgent campaigns early this election year.

On another subject entirely, Murdoch offered this somewhat surprising tidbit about the 2016 election: He "could live with Hillary as president."

"We have to live with who we get," he said. "We don't have any choice."

Read the whole interview (paywall) here.

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