Updated below page break | Shepard Smith is losing his 7 p.m. Eastern Fox Report slot, but will gain the post of managing editor of the network's breaking news division, Mediaite is reporting. Presumably this opens that time slot for Sean Hannity, who is losing his 9 p.m. slot to Megyn Kelly.
With thick, black smoke pouring out of the chimney of the Sistine Chapel indicating that the College of Cardinals had not elected a new pope on their first ballot, Fox News Channel's Shep Smith took to the air at 3:15 p.m. EDT to grill Catholic priest and Fox News contributor Fr. Jonathan Morris on the Catholic Church being out of touch with the modern world, particularly regarding how women cannot serve as priests.
While Morris defended Catholic orthodoxy and noted that there are some things -- such as the all-male priesthood -- which not even a pope could change, Smith objected that those notions grounded in 2,000-year-old Scripture were just, well, antiquated and irrelevant and that the Church should adapt to the ethos of the age (h/t @tomferrari on Twitter):
On his way out to commercial break at 3:24 p.m. Eastern, Studio B host Shep Smith noted that August 1 is "National Badminton Day," and quipped "Forget National Day of Intolerance, let's just stay with badminton."
The Fox News Channel host's comments appear to be referring to Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day, which Smith's fellow FNC colleague Mike Huckabee declared August 1 to be recently. Huckabee announced the eat-in demonstration to show support for the national chicken chain which found itself in a liberal firestorm after its president expressed his religious convictions against same-sex marriage. [h/t email tipster Tom Hanks; MP3 audio here; video follows page break]
On Wednesday’s edition of Studio B w/ Shepard Smith, anchor Smith let slip his personal political views on same-sex marriage with some condescending remarks about how being pro-traditional marriage is an outdated notion. Following the "official" announcement that Barack Obama now supports same-sex marriage, Smith opined that the President of the United States is "now in the 21st century," suggesting of course that the near half of Americans who support traditional marriage are somehow retrograde.
Smith’s true colors became more apparent in the hour during the first of two interviews he conducted with the host of Special Report, Bret Baier: [Video follows page break. MP3 audio here.]
Shep Smith: putting the liberal balance into Fox News Channel's fair-and-balanced reporting . . .
On Fox Report this evening, Shep sneered at Gov. Walker's budget-repair bill, sniffing at it as "so-called" reform, sarcastically adding that as far as union members facing layoffs are concerned, "it's no repair to them."
Later, interviewing FNC's White House correspondent Mike Emanuel, a nervous Smith sought reassurance that Florida wasn't heading down Walker's Wisconsin path.
Taking a break from ongoing coverage of today's Blair House health care summit around 3:15 p.m. EST today, Fox News Channel's Shep Smith scolded Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) and congressional Republicans for impeding passage of the Democratic health care agenda (video embedded at right; audio available here):
Why do Republicans want to throw this thing out and start over, senator? Why do they want to do that? Nobody buys that!
Can't we just say, "Look, we [sic] got to do something in this country. This is going to bankrupt us!" And you people up there who are supposed to be representing us are making it perfectly clear, you are going to sit in your corners with your own talking points and we're going to lose! We're going to get nothing. And it's clear we're not.
So when this is over, the president will be able to say, "I tried, we couldn't get anything done, here comes reconciliation." Fifty-one votes, and away we go. Then we got a real mess on our hands, and everybody is just mad at everybody else as the country falls apart. It just doesn't seem fair!