The Clintons were “the reason Fox News was created”, Chelsea Clinton has said, as she criticised its “destructive impact” particularly around climate change.
Speaking alongside her mother Hillary Clinton in an interview with Variety, the pair discussed working together on their documentary series Gutsy, and whether a woman will ever be president of the United States.
They were interviewed as part of the magazine’s 2022 Power of Women series.
“We were the reason that Fox News was created,” Chelsea said.
“Because Rupert Murdoch recognised a great market opportunity.”
Addressing its coverage of climate change, she continued: “Climate change illuminated where Fox News was willing to go and its destructive impact.
“It’s not singularly about Fox News; it’s also about conservative and right-wing enterprises that sprung up during the 1990s and early 2000s.”
She added: “I’m 42, and when I was in junior high, two-thirds of Americans knew human activity is partly responsible for climate change.
“The right proved to themselves, ‘We can hit people with relentless misinformation and every night pipe into their homes to disbelieve scientists – what else could be possible?’ Today, with COVID, it’s the same playbook.”
Her mother was asked if she thought she would have won the 2016 election if Facebook had never been invented.
“I can’t do that hypothetical,” she said.
“We know that they were unfortunately instrumental in permitting Cambridge Analytica and the Trump campaign to engage in a massive campaign of mis- and disinformation.
“I think that would’ve been harder, but I can’t hypothesise about what would have been different.”
She was also asked if she agreed with remarks made by high-profile Democrat congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who told GQ magazine that part of her believes there could never be a woman president.
She replied: “No, I don’t agree with that. I do agree it’s really hard.
“I agree that the double standard is alive and well. And so therefore any woman in politics or any walk of life faces challenges that men who are equivalent in experience don’t face.”
She said she “came so close”, getting more votes, but “unprecedented things happened to me”.
“I do think it’s possible. I do think it’s hard. There’s a line from one of my favourite movies, A League of Their Own: ‘If it wasn’t hard, anybody could do it’.”