Chris Hayes began the final segment of MSNBC’s All In on Monday by lambasting Republicans for “running against Hillary Clinton” in the 2018 midterms. Ironically, Hayes spent entire remainder of his show discussing Hillary Clinton.
The segment opened with an ad by Republican Senator Don Blankenship (WV), in which a narrator declared that Blankenship supported jailing former Secretary Clinton. Hayes paused briefly to remind viewers of Blankenship’s felony charge before attacking the GOP’s renewed interest in talking about Clinton:
The A.P. reports that Republicans are making Clinton the star of their midterm election strategy, despite the fact that she currently holds no position of power, isn't running for, well, anything. But their tax cut message falling flat, Republicans are betting big the ghost will serve them well in 2018.
In the very next sentence, Hayes introduced his guest for the remainder of the show: Amy Chozick, a New York Times reporter and the author of the pro-Clinton book Chasing Hillary. To hammer home precisely what kind of interview Hayes had in store for his viewers, the book’s cover appeared on screen boasting a subheader that read, “Ten years, Two Presidential Campaigns, and One Intact Glass Ceiling.”
The conversation unfolded predictably. Once Hayes had finished with the obligatory platitudes (“really interesting book,” “very well-written,”), Chozick complained the negative “pavlovian response” that Republican voters exhibited towards Ms. Clinton:
“I write in the book about when I first met her when I was growing up in Texas when I was sixteen. And like, everyone I knew hated her. There has been this large-scale psychic phenomenon of hillary hating for as long as she’s been on the national stage. And I thought once she stepped back from the national stage, we wouldn’t see that. But clearly we still are.”
Hayes also mentioned Chozick’s laughable conclusion that media coverage had been an obstacle for the Clinton campaign. She contended that The New York Times and other outlets had become “a de facto instrument of Russian intelligence,” during the election by reporting on the former Secretary’s hacked emails. Intrigued, Hayes inquired how the media might avoid such pitfalls in the future, but she had no answer ready for him. “That’s above my pay grade,” she laughed.
To his credit, Hayes managed to make it nearly four minutes before mentioning sexism. The subject inevitably came up while he and Chozick scratched their heads in unison and pondered what on earth could have made Ms. Clinton so unpalatable to voters. He finally concluded that the widespread distaste for her was “totally out of proportion to her as a person, and also driven by sexism.”
Choczick admitted to being particularly perturbed by a common refrain she’d heard in 2016: “I would vote for a woman, just not that woman.” Neither she nor Hayes appeared overly convinced by this seemingly reasonable sentiment, with the MSNBC host likening such rationale to the phrase, “I’m not racist, but...”
While the DNC reportedly have attempted to distance themselves from the Clintons since 2016, many in the media appear all to eager to defend their chosen candidate two years later. Ms. Clinton may have faded from the public eye somewhat, but the indignance has remained. While Hayes’s criticism of the GOP’s new anti-Hillary strategy ought to be evaluated on its own merits, it is hard to ignore how eager he still appeared to be to relitigate the election.
To read a partial transcript of the segment, click "expand" below:
MSNBC’s All In with Chris Hayes
8:52 – 9:00 p.m. EDT
3 clips; 4 min, 49 sec total
8:52:54 – 8:55:24 (2 min, 30 sec)
CAMPAIGN AD NARRATOR: We need to arrest Hillary. Republican Don Blankenship stands with President Trump.
CHRIS HAYES: That was a campaign ad in the year of our lord 2018 for a convicted felon Don Blankenship, who spent a year in jail for his role in a mine disaster that killed 29 people, calling for hillary Clinton to be locked up. In a campaign ad in 2018.
The A.P. reports that Republicans are making Clinton the star of their midterm election strategy, despite the fact that she currently holds no position of power, isn't running for, well, anything. But their tax cut message falling flat, Republicans are betting big the ghost will serve them well in 2018. Joining me now is Amy Chozick, author of the new book Chasing Hillary. Ten years, two Presidential campaigns, and one intact glass ceiling. You spent a lot of time with Hillary Clinton.
AMY CHOZICK: A lot.
HAYES: What is your reaction to seeing that story in the A.P. about how – she's not in public life anymore and they're going to try to run against Hillary in the 2018 miss terms.
CHOZICK: It's unbelievable. They're betting on the republicans to have just, this pavlovian response to even seeing her face. I mean, I write in the book about when I first met her when I was growing up in Texas when I was sixteen. And like, everyone I knew hated her. There has been this large-scale psychic phenomenon of hillary hating for as long as she’s been on the national stage. And I thought once she stepped back from the national stage, we wouldn’t see that. But clearly we still are.
HAYES: The book is a really interesting book, it’s very well written. You write about some conclusions you come to about the campaign and the campaign coverage that maybe you didn't see at the time, particularly around the e-mail coverage and the Podesta – and the hacked e-mails. In retrospect, what do you they about the hacked e-mails were covered?
CHOZICK: Right. Well, I was on my way to the newsroom. It was December, I was still in the post-election haze, and my colleagues wrote a great Pulitzer-winning story how the Russians had pulled off the perfect hack. They said part of that was turning the Times and every media organization that covered these into a de facto instrument of Russian intelligence. And that really stopped me in my tracks, you know? And kept me up at night, just wondering, what were we doing? And it's not that I think we handled it wrongly at the time or shouldn't have covered it, but I think we need a lot more introspection about what we do with these hacked documents going forward. There's clear signs the Russians are going to try it again in the future. And so how does the media not become that instrument of Russian intelligence while still disseminating what's newsworthy?
HAYES: What's the answer?
CHOZICK: I don’t – that is above my paygrade I think, but I'm glad people are debating it.
8:57:05 – 8:57:49 (44 sec)
HAYES: In the decade you spend covering Hillary Clinton – and I agree, the hatred for her is – will blow – will singe your eyebrows.
CHOZICK: It's visceral.
HAYES: Visceral. And I think, in my personal opinion, completely detached from who she is as a human being, totally out of proportion to her as a person, and also I think, driven by a lot of sexism. What’s your conclusion.
CHOZICK: I mean, her politics This is what's fascinating about Hillary hate. Her politics are pretty centrist and they shouldn't be that offensive. It’s not about her political stances.
HAYES: That’s exactly correct. I think we can all agree, the way people feel about Hillary Clinton and the hatred they have for her is not about like, the substance of the Hillary policy or anything.
8:58:21 – 8:58:56 (35 sec)
HAYES: Is it sexism?
CHOZICK: A lot of it, I think. I would talk to voters all the time, even voters who, you know, hated trump, but they would say, I would vote for a woman, just not that woman. I always heard that again and again, just not that woman. And when you dig into that, well why is she that woman? And it was like 30 years of sexist attacks have made her that woman. And I sort of think, does every woman become that woman when they reach a certain height? But it was like, I got that again and again, oh, I don't have a problem with a woman Present, but that woman.
Right. That always seems a little like the, “I’m not racist, but...” sort of preface.
CHOZICK: Right. Right!