On Thursday, Politico media writers Dylan Byers and Hadas Gold turned on MSNBC, saying the recent spate of bad behavior and inflammatory rhetoric by its hosts–especially Martin Bashir’s suggestion that someone defecate and urinate in former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s mouth–was making the network “unseemly.”
In an edition of On The Media, Byers and Gold spoke about how MSNBC personalities like Bashir, Alec Baldwin, who got suspended for two weeks for making anti-gay comments at a photographer on the streets of New York, and Chris Matthews, who made lewd comments about Republican New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s weight, were displaying “less than civil” behavior.
Byers said their actions were “probably not” the way to “move the ball forward for progressives,” especially since the network tries to brand itself as the “above it all” and “smart” network, with hosts like Chris Hayes and Alex Wagner, both of whom went to Brown University, and Rachel Maddow, who went to Stanford and was a Rhodes Scholar.
After Bashir’s comments, Palin’s political action committee, SarahPAC, wrote a letter to MSNBC President Phil Griffin and NBC News President Deborah Turness asking whether Bashir would be disciplined given the network’s history of punishing it’s on-air talent for offensive remarks. Breitbart News exclusively obtained the letter, which pointed out that MSNBC seems to suspend its employees based on the target of their remarks and not the content.
The letter concludes by saying, “Americans deserve to know that your network doesn’t condone violent and hateful rhetoric directed at anyone, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, or political persuasion.”
On Thursday, Imus said he could not believe Bashir was still on the air, telling MSNBC President Griffin, “Come on, man!” In 2007, while he was a candidate for president, Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) said MSNBC should fire Imus for his “nappy headed hos” remarks because those “hateful” words were “coarsening” the culture and demeaning his daughters.
Bashir has since apologized, conceding his words were “offensive” and “wholly inappropriate,” but neither Obama nor MSNBC, a network that ginned up the “war on women” rhetoric throughout the 2012 campaign, has commented on Bashir’s misogynistic and vile remarks that demeaned females, which includes Obama’s daughters.