Fox and Friends, Conflict Edition.

In this story from the Daily Beast you can get an inside look at what Fox News was up to prior to the Republican debate.

HINT: They weren’t about asking substantive questions and allowing candidates to present opposing points of view, they were about stirring the pot. Of course the candidates took the bait. Hook, line and sinker.

It was part political spectacle, part American Idol, part YouTube extravaganza, a pure Roger Ailes production—and the latest sign that the Fox News chairman is quietly repositioning America’s dominant cable-news channel.

Hours before last week’s presidential debate in Orlando, Ailes’s anchors sat in a cavernous back room, hunched over laptops, and plotted how to trap the candidates. Chris Wallace said he would aim squarely at Rick Perry’s weakness: “How do you feel about being criticized by some of your rivals as being too soft on illegal immigration? Then I go to Rick Santorum: is Perry too soft?”

“That’s going to get some fireworks going,” said managing editor Bill Sammon, grinning.

I don’t really blame Fox News, because after all they are a business and want to produce the most entertaining program they can. The Republicans allowed this to happen the way it went down and I for one don’t think the way these debates have been structured is helping anyone but President Obama.

H/T Ace of Spades

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