The Fox News anchor made a splash Thursday night during the GOP debate, which racked up record ratings. But a profile of him in today’s Los Angeles Times also mentions his faith and a singular event that changed his life:
When Baier settles in over a New York strip and a glass of cabernet and is asked about the pressure of the bright spotlight that’s about to hit, he exudes an inner calm. It’s the anchor’s way since the harrowing days he and his wife Amy experienced after the birth of his oldest son, Paul, in 2007.
Born with a major heart defect, Paul required major surgery just days after he came into the world and a second operation months later. (Though he faces more surgery as he grows up, he’s now an active and healthy 8-year-old who is on a swim team and shares his father’s obsession with golf.)
“It changed who I am,” Baier said. “It changed where my mind is. The debate is a huge event. It’s a big night. But in the big picture, families around this country are out there dealing with something like sitting in an emergency room waiting for their kid to get out of surgery. So Donald Trump not listening to a buzzer when his time is up — in the big picture — that doesn’t even rate.”
Before every debate — he moderated five during the 2012 primary season — Baier will spend 10 minutes alone behind a closed door to pray.
“I’ve done that every time and that gets me ready,” he said. “It’s just a quiet moment. No computers. It’s meditative. It’s a thankful and grateful thing to be in the spotlight.” He’ll put in that time even after attending Catholic morning Mass with his mother, Pat, and brother, Tim, who both traveled to Cleveland to watch him in action.
Baier was born in Rumson, New Jersey. He was raised Catholic in Dunwoody, Georgia. He attended Marist High School (Atlanta), a private Roman Catholic high school, graduating in 1988. Baier then attended DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana, graduating in 1992 with a BA degree in political science and English. At DePauw, he became a member of the Xi Chapter of the Sigma Chi Fraternity.