PHILADELPHIA ― The pro-Bernie Sanders protesters out in force may hate to admit it, but the Democratic primary is over. The Clinton campaign, however, is clearly looking ahead toward November as it increasingly targets Fox News viewers.
Hillary Clinton gave her first interview to the network this election cycle just last month, after becoming the party’s presumptive nominee. She next called into Bill O’Reilly’s primetime Fox News show in response to the Nice terrorist attacks, taking a page from Donald Trump’s media playbook. Clinton will now give her first post-Democratic convention interview to Chris Wallace on “Fox News Sunday.”
The Democratic nominee hasn’t appeared on the Sunday show since 2011, and in a Wednesday appearance on Fox News, Wallace said he’d been requesting an interview since she announced her run for president 15 months ago.
“We’ve all earned the value of persistence,” Wallace said. “You keep knocking on doors. Nobody answers. And finally, somebody opens the door. You’ve got to pick the right time, the right pitch, the right person to speak to, and it all worked together.”
Fox News has been embroiled in controversy over the past week as chairman and CEO Roger Ailes resigned in the wake of widespread sexual harassment allegations. Still, Fox News remains the top-rated cable news network and Clinton could try and win over its Independent or even “Never Trump” Republican viewers. Of course, she’ll still have to contend with Trump, who primarily turns to Fox News and sympathetic hosts like O’Reilly and Sean Hannity.
The Clinton campaign hinted during the Democratic primary that the candidate might appear more on Fox after first dealing with Sanders’ insurgent candidacy. In April, The Washington Post’s Erik Wemple asked communications director Jennifer Palmieri whether Clinton’s participation in a Fox News town hall could lead to more appearances.
“We’re in the middle of a string of contests in the Democratic primary, so our focus is on Democratic voters,” Palmieri said at the time, adding that they expected more engagement with Fox in the future.