Dem Calls Court Conservatives ‘Horsemen of the Apocalypse,’ Andrea Mitchell Just Sits There

Despite all the talk of civility in the wake of the congressional shooting on June 14, on Monday, MSNBC anchor Andrea Mitchell didn’t bat an eye as Democratic Hawaii Senator Mazie Hirono launched into a tirade against conservative members of the Supreme Court. The left-wing lawmaker actually accused the justices of ushering in the end of the world.

Near the end of a lengthy interview with Hirono, Mitchell asked: “And Senator, as a member of the Judiciary Committee, I wanted to ask you about the Supreme Court decision today....that there is at least a partial reinstatement of the travel ban for people from six predominantly Muslim countries.”

In part, Hirono replied:

And by the way, you know, Neil Gorsuch, who I did not support as a Supreme Court Justice, he's joined two of the most conservative justices, Clarence Thomas and [Sam] Alito, on the Court to take the position that the entire injunction should have been lifted. This is like the three horsemen of the apocalypse, and they’re waiting for the fourth one to come along so that they can go on their trend toward what I call extremism.

And that’s exactly – you know, I’m not surprised at all that Neil Gorsuch is right in there with Thomas and Alito in wanting to pretty much tell the president, “You just go right ahead, impose a Muslim ban.” I'm glad that the other justices are not there quite yet.

Mitchell didn’t bother to challenge that offensive declaration, instead she simply wrapped the exchange with: “Senator Hirano, thank you so much, thanks for being with us.”

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Later in show, Mitchell invited on fellow liberal journalists to continue the fearmongering over the direction of the high court. Yamiche Alcindor of The New York Times fretted: “The Republicans did a lot of kind of politically incorrect things to get to this moment....And now you see Neil Gorsuch sitting on the Supreme Court making really, really important decisions.” She further worried: “So what we’re seeing is really the right’s idea, the Republican ideals really being fortified by the Supreme Court that they handpicked and that they played the long game to get.”

Moments later, The Washington Post’s Jonathan Capehart chimed in, warning:

And talking about the long game, yeah, Republicans played the long game when it came to the Supreme Court and now the Court has an ideological balance that could tip if another justice retires from the Supreme Court. And a lot of – and a lot of the sort of progressive push – and by progressive I mean extending the opportunity to be fully and whole participants in the American dream – will tilt the other way.

He implored leftists to “keep their eyes on the ball” and remain “vigilant” to make sure “the hard-fought rights that they won two years ago don’t get chipped away, our rights as gay Americans are chipped away even further, that our rights as people of color or minorities are chipped away.”

The network morning shows on Monday sounded the alarm that the prospect of Justice Anthony Kennedy retiring “terrifies the left.” Mitchell and her guests just proved that point.

This biased reporting was brought to viewers by OfficeDepot and LaQuinta.

Here are excerpts of the June 26 coverage:

12:23 PM ET

(...)

ANDREA MITCHELL: And Senator, as a member of the Judiciary Committee, I wanted to ask you about the Supreme Court decision today. The President in a statement just released, but referenced a few minutes ago on our show by Kristen Welker from the White House, is calling it a complete victory. He says, “Today’s unanimous Supreme Court decision is clear victory for national security,” in that there is at least a partial reinstatement of the travel ban for people from six predominantly Muslim countries if they don’t have relatives or jobs or school registrations here in the States.  

SEN. MAZIE HIRONO [D-HI]: It’s hardly a clear victory. And in fact, everything that the President talks about, everything is great, wonderful, it’s still a Muslim ban. And by lifting part of the injunction, by creating a category of people who will be able to come in by showing some kind of bona fides relationship with people or institutions in our country, I don’t know what that means.

And by the way, you know, Neil Gorsuch, who I did not support as a Supreme Court Justice, he's joined two of the most conservative justices, Clarence Thomas and [Sam] Alito, on the Court to take the position that the entire injunction should have been lifted. This is like the three horsemen of the apocalypse, and they’re waiting for the fourth one to come along so that they can go on their trend toward what I call extremism.

And that’s exactly – you know, I’m not surprised at all that Neil Gorsuch is right in there with Thomas and Alito in wanting to pretty much tell the president, “You just go right ahead, impose a Muslim ban.” I'm glad that the other justices are not there quite yet.

MITCHELL: Senator Hirano, thank you so much, thanks for being with us.

(...)

12:52 PM ET

YAMICHE ALCINDOR [THE NEW YORK TIMES]: And I think the other thing that’s really important as a journalist for me to understand is the long game that the Republicans played here. The Republicans did a lot of kind of politically incorrect things to get to this moment. So you have Mitch McConnell who categorically said that Barack Obama could not have another Supreme Court pick. And now you see Neil Gorsuch sitting on the Supreme Court making really, really important decisions. This is going to be a decision that changes how the President can go forward when it comes to immigration.

And I also think – we are not talking about them at this moment – but I also think the cake bakers, there’s going to be an argument about whether or not businesses can deny service to gay couples because of their religious beliefs. There are going to be – there’s already a ruling out there that’s saying that the states can give money to religious organizations.

So what we’re seeing is really the right’s idea, the Republican ideals really being fortified by the Supreme Court that they handpicked and that they played the long game to get.

MITCHELL: And Jonathan Capehart, as Yamiche just pointed out, this is actually the second anniversary of the landmark ruling, Justice Kennedy’s key role in all of that, on gay marriage. And now you have kind of partial decisions today in that they’re taking up the case of the baker who wants to discriminate or have the right to not bake for gay weddings, which could be, if it
comes down against gay rights, a much broader ruling in fact against all sorts of protected minority groups. And also the ruling though, in the other case, that birth certificates have to include the gay parent. So it's kind of a mixed message in terms of gay rights today.

JONATHAN CAPEHART [THE WASHINGTON POST]: Right. It’s a bit mixed, especially compared to what we were doing at this point two years ago, the way the nation was celebrating. But look, the decisions that came down today make – should make it clear to everybody, particularly Democrats who are in the middle of a circular firing squad fighting with each other, that elections have consequences.

And talking about the long game, yeah, Republicans played the long game when it came to the Supreme Court and now the Court has an ideological balance that could tip if another justice retires from the Supreme Court. And a lot of – and a lot of the sort of progressive push – and by progressive I mean extending the opportunity to be fully and whole participants in the American dream – will tilt the other way.

And so I think that for the American people, and particularly LGBT Americans who are looking at these decisions, that this is a warning that they have to keep their eyes on the ball, they have to be vigilant to make sure that the rights – the hard-fought rights that they won two years ago don’t get chipped away, that our rights as gay Americans are chipped away even further, that our rights as people of color or minorities are chipped away. I think, Andrea, you just said that the cake bakers case could have broader implications for other people in this country who aren’t LGBT. And you know, we won’t know what that case will look like until the arguments are made at the Supreme Court. But this is a big deal. Split, but a big deal.

(...)

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