Fox News’s Harris Faulkner is on a mission to bring her military upbringing-inspired rules to live by to the rest of the world — including lawmakers locked in never-ending political battles.
“What I hope is what I’m giving people is a way to negotiate. You don’t get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate,” the “Outnumbered” co-host tells ITK of her new book, “9 Rules of Engagement: A Military Brat’s Guide to Life and Success.”
“Politicians say, ‘Oh you know, politics is a blood sport.’ I mean, what’s the opposite of that?” Harris asks.
“We had one political campaign tell us, ‘When they go low, you go high,’ ” she adds, referring to the mantra made famous by former first lady Michelle ObamaMichelle LeVaughn Robinson ObamaMichelle Obama looks to mobilize voters for midterms We must mount an all-country response to help our Afghan allies Obamas, Bushes and Clintons joining new effort to help Afghan refugees MORE at the 2016 Democratic National Convention. “I’m here to tell you that that high road, you can honk your horn and drive down the center lane. Most states there’s not a lot of traffic on it.”
The daughter of a career Army officer who served three tours of duty in Vietnam, Faulkner says she’s had help steering her professional and personal life in the right direction thanks to being raised as a “military brat.”
“We had rules in our house that were tied more than to just a chore… they were tied to greater success at life,” says Faulkner, who also hosts Fox News’s “Outnumbered Overtime.”
She’s detailed all those life lessons — including rules such as “recruit your special forces” (aka creating an inner circle to serve as a personal support system) and “think like a general”— in the book, which hit shelves on Tuesday.
It’s not all directives and drills for Faulkner, though — amid the nonstop news cycle, she appreciates some R&R every once in awhile.
“I’m pretty disciplined. But your brain needs boredom. It needs routine. Downtime for me is just when I can sit still,” the yoga devotee says.
Every few months she’ll also treat herself to a day of beauty, going to the spa to “get everything done.”
But Faulkner gets serious when asked which particular battlefield rule in her book lawmakers might benefit from: “Unleashing the power of integrity is someplace I think we need to live right now.”
“On a daily basis I’m covering things that are leaking out of the White House and leaking out what should be closed-door meetings on the Hill. That is not integrity,” the six-time Emmy Award winner says.
“If you can’t tell something to somebody’s face, that you’re going to walk away from them and repeat everything that they have told you in confidence, or said in a closed-door meeting or where you expect to have privacy, that is not the high road. And I truly believe that the truth comes out because we live in a free society,” Faulkner says. “So I don’t think we need to stab each other and do those things figuratively that have become so commonplace in politics right now.”
The polarized political climate, Faulkner says, has created an atmosphere in which “we’re not really listening because everybody wants to be right.”
“I think we’ve lost our patience with hearing the other side because we’re so quick for a comeback so our point is heard and we’re proved right,” says Faulkner.
“I think this book shows people that you can strategize, and you can negotiate, and have a contingency plan for when you’re wrong and miss the mark, as well as owning your moment when you’re right.”