WASHINGTON - Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton branded as "false and scurrilous" a Fox News report that she had fainted during a speaking engagement in Buffalo, N.Y., yesterday because she is two months' pregnant. The story, posted on the Fox Web site yesterday afternoon, said that Clinton was carrying "the love child of Tucker Carlson, former host of CNN's Crossfire."
"There's more real news on satire sites than there is on Fox News," said Clinton, who claimed she was merely suffering from a stomach flu she caught at a retreat she had hosted in Westchester, N.Y., for her staff last weekend.
Fox News anchor Shepard Smith, voted the second-most-trusted news anchor in the country in a recent TV Guide poll, said Fox was sticking by its story. "We had a reporter embedded at the so-called retreat Senator Clinton hosted for her staff," said Smith. "If that was a political retreat, then Michael Jackson works for the Make-a-Wish Foundation."
According to the anonymous Fox reporter who attended the retreat, "People don't arrive at a retreat with gaily wrapped packages instead of laptops and briefcases. That was a surprise shower pure and simple, right down to the battery-operated gag gifts. The girls sat around gossiping and doing each other's nails."
Tucker Carlson, who first met Clinton when she appeared on Crossfire to plug her autobiography Living History, did not respond to messages left on his answering machine, but an AP reporter managed to track him down through an e-mail address on Carlson's resume on monster.com. "Senator Clinton is a warm and wonderful human being," said Carlson. "I did turn to her for comfort when I was fired by CNN, but that was only two weeks ago, so there's no way I'm the father of her child."
Former president Clinton also denied that he could possibly be the father. "The last time the senator and I were together was Christmas Eve," said Clinton. "Frankly, I was disappointed. I was hoping for the new George Foreman grill for Christmas. I bet she forgot to go shopping for me."
In related news, Jon Stewart says he is now sorry he called Carlson "a homo" on Crossfire several months ago. "Apparently Tucker's more of a man than I thought he was," said Stewart.