MSNBC Unironically Accuses Others of Living in a 'Bubble' on Impeachment

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There is perhaps no greater example of a political bubble than MSNBC. Its journalists are liberals, its analysts are liberals, even most of their purported conservative commentators spend most of their time sounding like liberals. So, it was a bit strange during their special live coverage of the House vote to establish rules for the impeachment of the president around noon on Thursday, that the pot accused the kettle of living "in its own bubble."

In talking about the vote, over screen graphics that screamed "White House In Crisis," anchor Ari Melber rather unobjectively implied that the Democrats are the right side of the issue, "the tension here that we’re seeing today as the House passes this resolution between the facts that moved the Democrats and concern so many Americans, according to some polls, the majority now backing impeachment, even before public hearings, and the unity of President Trump's defense in the Republican Caucus."

 

 

To talk about that unity, Melber brought on Heidi Przybyla, but not before accusing Republicans of living in a bubble, "By contrast, while Democrats, you could say in a different era, although also a divided one, widely and strongly obtained to the nature of the attacks and investigation of President Clinton and their view of whether those were impeachable offences however objectionable the conduct was, 31 Democrats backed at least, the actual initial probe. What does it tell you that even as these facts amount, and the public moves, the House Republican Caucus, according to Mr. Amash, to use his word, is living in its own bubble for now?"

Speaking of bubbles, Melber overstates public support for impeachment. According to the polling gurus at FiveThirtyEight, roughly 48% of Americans support impeachment, while roughly 44% do not. Admittedly not great news for President Trump, but not exactly the wide consensus Melber implied. If Melber were to be consistent, it would seem the nearly 50-50 split indicates that Democrats and the media also live in a bubble.

Przybyla for her part said that a number of more moderate Republicans do have serious problems with Trump's behavior, but also shared leadership's concerns about the way the inquiry has been conducted, so if "they are going to dissent, this is not the vote they are going to dissent on." She then went on to fact check Kevin McCarthy and what he, "said about this being un-democratic," but it was more of an opinionated point-counterpoint than a fact check.

If MSNBC wants Republicans to break out of their alleged political bubble, it is not too much to ask that they break out of theirs as well.

Here is a transcript for the October 31 show:

MSNBC Live Coverage

11:50 AM ET

ARI MELBER: And that really brings to the fore what you and our panelists are speaking about -- the tension here that we’re seeing today as the House passes this resolution between the facts that moved the Democrats and concern so many Americans, according to some polls, the majority now backing impeachment, even before public hearings, and the unity of President Trump's defense in the Republican caucus. For that I want to bring back in Heidi Przybyla, you do a back of the envelope calculation.

Heidi, and one of the things we see today is no Republicans who are still members of the party, there's one who left the party over this, as mentioned earlier, an independent, Mr. Amash, but no current members of the House Republican Caucus crossing over. By contrast, while Democrats, you could say in a different era, although also a divided one, widely and strongly obtained to the nature of the attacks and investigation of President Clinton and their view of whether those were impeachable offences however objectionable the conduct was, 31 Democrats backed at least, the actual initial probe. What does it tell you that even as these facts amount, and the public moves, the House Republican Caucus, according to Mr. Amash, to use his word, is living in its own bubble for now? 

HEIDI PRZYBYLA: I can tell you, Ari, based on my reporting which includes meeting with a number of these moderate Republicans that they are deeply troubled by the president's behavior. But they view this vote today as largely a procedural vote, and that many of their objections, just like the leadership has been voicing, have been along the process lines. So, to Garrett's point about his very good reporting, many of these Republicans felt like if they are going to dissent, this is not the vote they are going to dissent on, so I think  we really need to keep that in mind as we look at the vote totals and that this is not comparable to previous initial votes on impeachment in that sense. 

I also want to correct for the record, Ari, sense this is a moment for history, and fact check some of the things that leader McCarthy said about this being un-democratic, because this vote hasn’t taken place until 37 days into the process. Do you know why that is? Number one, this vote is not required under the Constitution. There's nothing in the Constitution that says that they needed to hold this vote. And also, the part about this being closed, behind closed doors, it is the Republicans themselves who allowed this to happen, because the Republicans changed the rules in the last Congress, in the 116th Congress, to allow the Democrats to go ahead and issue all of these unilateral subpoenas. They didn't have to hold a vote because they already had all the subpoena authority. 

Now they did have the hold the vote because they had to set out the rules of the road. They had to change that 45-minute questioning rule, for example. And so that is why you're seeing this vote today. And just one last note, it was Trey Gowdy himself, the head of the Oversight Committee, who said for the initial phase the only way to actually get truth is to do it behind closed doors when you're in the fact-finding part of the investigation. 

 

 
NB Daily Events Trump Impeachment MSNBC Video Ari Melber Heidi Przybyla Donald Trump

 

 
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