In their coverage of the first public impeachment hearings on Wednesday, MSNBC anchors wrung their hands, nervously wondering if the Democrats and the media were doing a good enough job convincing viewers that Trump really, really needs to be removed from the White House. Echoing the Washington Post’s Margaret Sullivan, who worried last week that the media would not be biased enough against Trump to make impeachment stick, Chuck Todd and Andrea Mitchell suggested that the political press was perhaps being too soft on the president.
Because that’s something that should really keep you up at night.
“We are living in a moment where we have a part of one of our major political parties that is just not accepting the premise, is just not accepting facts that are facts, has just prioritized loyalty to a person,” Todd whined, sweating profusely over the idea that not all Americans think this Ukraine flap is that big of a deal.
Here’s some straight truth, Chucky: If there was something wrong with President Trump’s phone call with the Ukrainian president – and we can discuss that, reasonably – it was, at best, a slap-on-the-wrist, politically-damaging kind of mistake. The type of thing 2020 Democrats can fairly whine about on stage and fairly use to attack Trump in their advertisements. Fine. It’s all good.
But if we’re to suggest that what Trump did amounts to an impeachable offense? Well, that’s where you lose Republicans. That’s where you lose ANY thinking American who knows damn good and well that every president since Washington has mixed politics and policy. It boggles the mind that anyone should be so naïve as to think otherwise.
“When is enough too much?” fretted Mitchell.
“When is it that we sit here and the President gets judged on a different – it’s like he’s getting, ‘Well, jeez, don’t – the President, he doesn’t understand the rules of Washington or he doesn’t understand the rules of diplomacy,’” Todd said, regressing to babble.
“At some point, with credible witnesses such as these….the American public has to decide,” said Mitchell. “Whether it’s an impeachment vote or a vote in the Senate or not, it’s a question then for the voters. But we, as journalists, have to not keep holding him to a different standard. We have to report this.”
Have to report…what? The facts of the impeachment inquiry? Okay, start by naming the whistleblower. Start by informing viewers that the Democrats don’t have ONE witness who actually spoke to President Trump. Start by being honest about the fact that Democrats have been clamoring to throw Trump out of office from the first day of his presidency.
Journalists are certainly holding Trump to a “different standard.” They just seem confused about which direction their own bias runs.
How thick IS that bubble, anyway?