As Donald Trump’s supporters spewed sexist garbage against Megyn Kelly on Twitter over the weekend (cue sexist garbage in the comments below), the Fox host went on Howard Kurtz’s “Media Buzz” to talk about the Republican debate -- and address the criticism she’s received since.
“I don’t think my history as a journalist supports bias on my part toward either party,” Kelly said. “I think I had questions that the left loved [Thursday] night and questions that the right loved.”
Addressing the accusation that she had personally gone after Trump for his disparaging comments about women, Kelly said, “My job is to go out there and ask probing questions that are hopefully smart and help the people learn something about this person and in this context, their weaknesses.”
Asking Trump about past sexist remarks “wasn’t an attack,” Kelly said. “It was a fair question.”
Indeed, while Trump remains convinced that he was singled out, Kurtz reminded viewers that Kelly asked Scott Walker if he would let a woman die rather than have an abortion, needled Ben Carson about his inexperience and probed Jeb Bush about all the lives his brother’s war has cost.
“We were trying to drill down to their most vulnerable areas and then give them a chance to explain them and also give the audience the chance to see how they would handle that,” Kelly explained. “The job is to get past the talking points and go to the place they might be the most vulnerable ... and then give them the chance to knock that ball back to us.”
In one of the interview’s more surprising moments, Kelly and Kurtz talked about the importance of diversity.
“The reason it’s good to have a panel that is somewhat diverse -- and people will make this argument in other contexts,” Kelly said, “you just bring another set of experiences with you. … I think it’s important to have a diverse panel because we all bring different life experiences.”
“That’s why it’s important not to have just a bunch of white guys in a situation like that,” Kurtz said.
Kurtz also revealed that Kelly had asked co-moderators Brett Baier and Chris Wallace not to intervene if she came under attack.
She seemed to take the same tack when it came to attacks from Trump’s supporters.
“It’s OK. I’m a big girl. I can take it,” she said. “I understand why people get upset. The stakes are very high here. We’re talking about the Oval Office.”