Fox News host John Roberts appeared to slide in a compliment to Vladimir Putin on a recent segment, specifically over his physique.
On Friday’s America Reports, a Fox News guest denounced Boris Yeltsin’s time in power and described, in brief, Putin’s rise.
The segment comes just before President Biden’s first meeting with the Russia president, which most of the world is watching in anticipation, anxious to see which leader will appear stronger after four years of the US president openly yielding to Russia’s guidance.
Biden has called Putin “a worthy adversary” ahead of the meeting, but refused to comment on more details of why.
The Fox guests noted that Putin could “potentially” be in power for a long time, noting that he’s changed Russia’s constitution to allow for a long-term authoritarian reign. The segment then ended, and Roberts appeared back on the camera.
“Knows how to consolidate power, no question about that,” Roberts said of Putin.
What @FoxNews took from the Putin interview. https://t.co/zLYu4zO5pR
"Can you imagine Sandra, Boris Yeltsin on horseback without a shirt on," Roberts said to cohost Sandra Smith, who laughed.
“Not a pretty picture,” he added.
Fox News has long been complimentary of Putin, spending most of the Trump administration attempting to walk a tight rope between denying any involvement on Russia party’s of Donald Trump’s 2016 victory while suggesting that it would be okay if they’d been in on it anyway.
They are not alone in their continued favor, as many conservatives appear to be rooting for Putin against Biden even now.
In 2019, Tucker Carlson appeared flummoxed by any disdain for Putin at all.
“If you excluded debunked conspiracy theories, could any of these people actually tell you why Vladimir Putin is so bad? Why is he so bad?” Carlson said. “He’s bad, Chuck Todd says. Okay, speak slowly so I can understand. What makes Vladimir Putin worse than, I don’t know, a whole long list of American allies?”
While it’s true that America’s list of allies isn’t exactly a rosy love fest, Putin’s disdain for America isn’t exactly a secret. He’s also got a long history of silencing journalists, often in brutal and sometimes deadly ways, that most journalists tend to look down on.
Fox News, for some reason, isn’t too bothered by that.