"Did you hear what Scott Wiener did? He's an American hero!" a friend IMed to me today. No, the District 8 Supervisor/Senate hopeful didn't save a puppy from a burning building or poach a perfect egg, but he did make a move that got a lot of applause: he totally blew off Fox News.
Wiener tells SFist that the notoriously conservative channel sent emissaries to San Francisco's City Hall last week as anti-Sanctuary City sentiment reached a fevered national pitch around the Pier 14 slaying of Kate Steinle at the hands of undocumented man Francisco Sanchez.
When they tried to talk to Wiener, who many might describe as one of the Board's more conservative members, Wiener told them where they could put their mics. Take a look:
This elected official has the appropriate response to Fox News' chicanery: pic.twitter.com/TVmPr0id0o— Angelo Carusone (@GoAngelo) July 15, 2015
Wiener's clearly proud of the moment, tweeting about it later in the day with some VERY pointed air quotes.
Over the phone today, Wiener tells SFist that Fox "has been stalking members of the Board of Supervisors for about a week," going to Board members' homes and even showing up for (honestly, kind of dry) media events like a ribbon cutting ceremony for the new Presidio Parkway.
"I happened to be in City Hall last Friday, and they were lurking in the hallway...and that's when I said what I said.
"As any member of the press can tell you, I'm extremely accessible even with people I disagree with," Wiener said, naming a couple of San Francisco's agenda-driven journalists.
"But Fox News isn't a news outlet, it's a fringe propaganda machine that has taken a horrific and nightmarish tragedy and used it to fan the flames of anti-immigration."
Wiener says that even before the current issue hit the conservative consciousness, "I always had a blanket rule: no Fox News," even when asked.
"Any time Fox News is covering San Francisco, it is always to lambast the city. I'm not going to be a party to that."
The Fox reporter who approached Wiener wasn't the only one who faced wrath over the Steinle slaying: yesterday during an episode of Fox's The Five, host Geraldo Rivera told co-hosts Eric Bolling and Jesse Waters "You’re lucky that you’re my friend, I’d knock you out right now" as the trio argued over who is "exploiting" Steinle’s death more.
I'm not kidding. Here's the exchange:
And speaking of Trump (which we have been trying our damnedest not to as we cover this case), Steinle's brother Brad told Anderson Cooper yesterday that the presidential hopeful "was inappropriately using her without as much as calling the family to express condolences," CNN reports.
"Donald Trump talks about Kate Steinle like he knows her," he said.
"I've never heard a word from his campaign manager, I've never heard a word from him. It's disconcerting. I don't want to be affiliated with someone who doesn't have the common courtesy to reach out and ask about Kate, and our political views and what we want."
"Sensationalizing it is not the route we would like to go," he told Cooper.
"If you're going to use somebody's name and you're going to sensationalize the death of a beautiful young lady, maybe you should call and talk to the family first and see what their views are."