During the A-block of Friday’s MSNBC Live With Stephanie Ruhle, White House Correspondent Kasie Hunt inadvertently put lie to the media narrative that the government shutdown in late January was not the fault of congressional Democrats.
Even before funding for nonessential government programs had been officially halted at midnight on January 20th, MSNBC show hosts and guests alike were expressing indignance that the Republicans would dare try to blame the ordeal on their Democratic counterparts. The narrative at the time was that there was plenty of blame to go around, and many pundits were quick to remind viewers that it was Republicans, after all, who held the White House and both houses of Congress.
Yet two weeks later, in the aftermath of a second and much more brief shutdown on Friday, Hunt voiced what a plurality of Americans had been thinking all along: that the initial government shutdown had been a political ploy by Democrats.
“I would say the reality is they have been negotiating this package literally for months,” Hunt said of the 700-page two-year spending bill just recently signed by the President. She continued:
It’s why you heard Republicans accusing Democrats of holding up this kind of a deal for issues they say are not related. Obviously Nancy Pelosi feels as though they should be related and that’s what Chuck Schumer, you know, shut – led a shutdown over just a of couple weeks ago.
Stephanie Ruhle did not object Hunt’s assertion, nor did she object when her guest, former Republican Congresswoman Nan Hayworth, echoed that same sentiment when discussing the recently-avoided second shutdown:
It’s interesting and informative that neither side wanted to pursue a shutdown. So obviously, you know, the Democratic leadership did not think that holding everything up on DACA was a good idea this time around.
The line that Democrats were holding up the budget bill for DACA was ubiquitous on the right during the first government shutdown. Yet liberal network contributors, including Kasie Hunt herself, characterized such assertions as playing “the blame game.” Now that enough time has passed and polling data has revealed how the majority of Americans viewed the first shutdown, the media have begun quietly telling the truth.