‘Give Me a Break!’ Matthews Brutally Mocks Calls by Anti-Trump Republicans to Vote for Dems

Occasionally, MSNBC’s Hardball host Chris Matthews has provided us with moments of humor and levity (though most of the time at his own expense) and Wednesday was no exception as he took time to mock anti-Trump Republicans and faux Republicans pleading with voters to back Democrats in November.

Matthews didn’t let it on that he felt this way at first, highlighting a new James Comey tweet encouraging Americans to back Democrats for the sake of the country’s future and the memory of the Founding Fathers. Matthews noted that Comey is joined in this sentiment by folks like Steve Schmidt and George Will.

 

 

New York Times reporter Ken Vogel stated that he “absolutely” believes them but it’s “an open question” as to “whether it has any ultimate effect” and especially because “[t]he Republican base [is] still very much with Trump” while Comey is disliked by both parties for different reasons.

Liberal Washington Post columnist Jonathan Capehart took a different tract, gushing over Comey as doing the right thing “as an American here” by encouraging voters to flip the parties in control of the legislative branch because there must be at least one branch of government to act as a check on Trump (read: impeachment).

Matthews interjected part way through to wonder if Capehart actually believes Comey and other supposed Republicans:

MATTHEWS: I’m just asking, do you believe him, no?

CAPEHART: No, I do believe him and what I’m trying —

MATTHEWS: Do you believe George Will’s going to vote for Jamie Raskin? Do you think people are going to vote for Maxine Waters? 

CAPEHART: No.

It’s worth mentioning that it’s very kind of Matthews to mention Raskin considering whom hec rushed in a 2014 Democratic congressional primary.

“I mean, give me a break. They’re not going to do it. So, why they say they’re doing it,” Matthews added.

Amusingly, Capehart tried to keep up the spin:

No, Chris the point here is, when you don’t have the legislative checking the executive, at least under Republican control — the thing that you have to do is suppo — to bring people in who you think will control an erratic executive and that’s what Jim Comey is focused.

Before moving on to another topic, Matthews took one last swipe at these faux Republicans: “Well, if Steve Schmidt brings his ballot in here and shows to me how he’s going to vote straight Democratic this — I’ll be amazed. I’m sorry. I think it’s good rhetoric.”

To see the relevant transcript from MSNBC’s Hardball on July 18, click “expand.”

MSNBC’s Hardball
July 18, 2018
7:44 p.m. Eastern

CHRIS MATTHEWS: Anyway, you can add former FBI Director James Comey now for the list of Republicans who have broken ranks that are now calling on Republicans — catch this — to vote for Democrats this November. Others include Republican strategist Steve Schmidt and conservative columnist George F. Will. Comey tweeted: “This Republican Congress has proven incapable of fulfilling the Founders’ design that ‘Ambition must ... counteract ambition.’ All who believe in this country’s values must vote for Democrats this fall.” This is Comey talking. “Policy differences don’t matter right now. History has its eyes on us.” Ken, there it is just like George Will, Steve Schmidt, they’re all saying these are hardened Repub — hard-nosed Republicans saying vote Democrat. I — I wonder if they mean it, but apparently they are meaning it. Your thoughts?

KEN VOGEL: Yeah, absolutely, they do mean it. Now, whether it has any ultimate effect, I think, is — is an open question. The Republican base still very much with Trump and that’s what poses problems for those in the Republican elite, including some of the folks who you just mentioned. They may want to speak their conscience, but for folks who are currently in office, that’s a tougher thing to do, because they know that their base is not necessarily with them if they do oppose Trump. Now, for Comey in particular, I don’t necessarily think this is going to have any great effect. He’s a despised figure on the right. He’s also kind of a despised figure on the left. Many Democrats, of course, blame him for Hillary Clinton’s loss coming out days before the election and saying that he was reopening the investigation into her e-mails.

MATTHEWS: Yeah.

VOGEL: So, I don’t know that he particularly, despite the fact that he has tried to cast himself as sort of a moral voice here holds a lot of political weight.

JONATHAN CAPEHART: Chris, I have a different view on this and, yeah, Comey is a Republican and he’s telling people to vote Democrat, but I really believe that Comey is taking the — he’s — he’s being an American here. Our Constitution is — our government is a three-part government, the executive, the legislative —

MATTHEWS: Right. I know.

CAPEHART: — and the courts. But the legislative — the legislate —

MATTHEWS: I’m just asking, do you believe him, no?

CAPEHART: No, I do believe him and what I’m trying —

MATTHEWS: Do you believe George Will’s going to vote for Jamie Raskin? Do you think people are going to vote for Maxine Waters? 

CAPEHART: No.

MATTHEWS: I mean, give me a break. They’re not going to do it. So, why they say they’re doing it?

CAPEHART: No, Chris the point here is, when you don’t have the legislative checking the executive, at least under Republican control —

MATTHEWS: I know.

CAPEHART: — the thing that you have to do is suppo — to bring people in who you think will control an erratic executive and that’s what Jim Comey is focused.

MATTHEWS: Well, if Steve Schmidt brings his ballot in here and shows to me how he’s going to vote straight Democratic this — I’ll be amazed. I’m sorry. I think it’s good rhetoric.

NB Daily Campaigns & Elections 2018 Congressional Congress Trump Impeachment Conservatives & Republicans Liberals & Democrats MSNBC Hardball Video Government & Press James Comey Chris Matthews Jonathan Capehart Kenneth Vogel George Will Steve Schmidt
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