Embarrassed HuffPo Retracts Claim Fox News ‘Doctored’ Romney Gaffe Video

Liberal internet news site Huffington Post has egg on its face after it ran a story accusing Fox News Channel of deliberately removing the verbal flub GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney made while introducing his running-mate, Paul Ryan, as “the next president of the United States.”

It was a small error but since liberals are always eager to portray themselves as more intelligent, the minor gaffe immediately entered the Democratic bloodstream. After all, everyone knows that a verbal misstep is the perfect counter to three-and-a-half years of more than 8 percent unemployment.


Hipsters across the nation took great glee (while trying desperately to remain nonchalant) in replaying YouTube clips of Romney’s error.

Since Jon Stewart hadn't aired yet, it was the duty of the Huffington Post to find a way to bring Fox News into the punchline. What better way than to promote an accusation that the cable news channel had “doctored” the speech footage to make it look like Romney had not actually messed up.

It was a perfect story. Sadly, it was also utterly false.

In fact, Fox News had done no such thing. Romney had introduced Ryan as the next vice president on more than one occasion. Anyone who had watched the speech in its entirety would have known that. But such people were in short supply at the liberal blog billing itself as the “Huffington Post” news website.

Thanks to Alex Alvarez at Mediaite, we have the full text of the now-retracted story. I quote:

When Mitt Romney introduced his running mate Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) to a roaring crowd on Saturday, he flubbed the line and caused a bit of a stir by referring to his VP pick as “the next President of the United States.”

Romney later corrected himself, explaining he is not immune to mistakes. But if you happened to catch the clip on Fox News you might not know he butchered the line at all.

A reader points The Huffington Post to footage from 12:33 ET on Fox News that appears to have been doctored.

In it, Romney’s gaffe is noticeably absent. Instead, the former Massachusetts governor introduces “the next Vice President of the United States.”

Watch the clip above.

Moments later, the inevitable retraction was issued:

A HuffPost story about Mitt Romney making a mistake during a speech incorrectly indicated that Fox News had edited the video clip to correct Romney calling Paul Ryan the “next President of the United States.” Fox News actually aired footage of another part of Romney’s speech in which he did say “Vice President.” We regret the error, have removed the story, and apologize for the mistake.

Once again, we see yet another instance of how allegations against people and institutions perceived to be non-liberal are just too good to fact-check. Incidents like this one are sadly far too common because most elite journalists operate on the standing assumption that all Republicans are evil and stupid and Fox News is Satan's mouthpiece.

Matthew Sheffield
Matthew Sheffield
Matthew Sheffield, creator of NewsBusters and president of Dialog New Media, an internet marketing and design firm, left NewsBusters at the end of 2013