President Obama telephoned Mitt Romney on Wednesday to congratulate him on securing the Republican presidential nomination, and told Romney that he looked forward "to an important and healthy debate about America's future," said a spokesman for the Obama campaign, Ben LaBolt. The president, LaBolt said, "wished Governor Romney and his family well throughout the upcoming campaign."
Romney's primary win in Texas on Tuesday pushed him past the 1,144-delegate threshold that he needed to claim the Republican presidential nomination.
Fox News Channel came under criticism Wednesday for a four-minute video broadcast on its morning show "Fox & Friends" that portrayed President Obama's tenure as a series of failed promises.
The video had most of the hallmarks of a campaign attack ad -- except that it was produced and paid for by a news network. "Fox & Friends" has been described by Fox public relations executives in the past as an entertainment show. But the show also includes news elements, and the video, titled "Four Years of Hope and Change," was preceded by a graphic that read "America's Election Headquarters," Fox's name for its election news coverage. The video showed changes in the debt, the jobless rate, food prices, gas prices and other economic measurements, combined with spliced quotes from Obama and his critics. The co-anchors congratulated a producer, Chris White, for the video.
David Zurawik, a Baltimore Sun TV critic, wrote: "Even I am shocked by how blatantly Fox is throwing off any pretense of being a journalistic entity with videos like this."
Late Wednesday, a Fox News executive said the video was not authorized by senior executives, directing responsibility to the show's producers.