‘We’re Ready’: MSNBC’s Ruhle Eager to ‘Get Aboard the Beto Bus’

On her 9:00 a.m. ET hour show Friday morning, MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle grew impatient waiting for failed Texas Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke to decide whether or not he was jumping into the 2020 presidential race. She fondly recalled him promising Oprah Winfrey on February 5 that he would make up his mind by the end of the month and assured her guests that “People would get on the Beto bus.”

“Today’s March 1st, you know what that means? Where’s Beto? I was at his event with Oprah Winfrey, he said he would make his on decision whether to run by the end of the month. Last I checked...February’s over,” Ruhle proclaimed in the midst of a panel discussion about the 2020 Democratic primary race.

 

 

Left-wing MSNBC contributor and politics editor at The Root, Jason Johnson, warned: “Look, my concern is that the longer that you wait, you start losing out on the good consultants, right? Because at this point, a lot of the best campaign managers out there – ” Ruhle cut him off and proclaimed: “People would get on the Beto bus, come on now.”

After Johnson added that “this sort of apprehension makes people concerned” about O’Rourke’s potential campaign, Ruhle urged another possible 2020 contender to just hand over his entire campaign infrastructure to the ex-Congressman: “Well, Mike Bloomberg has gone out and hired the biggest, best, all-star team, a massive tech effort, and he’s got a whole lot of dough, he could just take that effort and pass it to Beto.”

Republican strategist Rick Tyler argued that “Beto can wait,” but was perplexed by the delay: “I have to say this, if you’re invited to an event with Oprah Winfrey and you don’t announce for president, that’s like crazy.” Ruhle agreed: “I was in the audience and I was ready to announce. Yes, it’s crazy. Trust me, I was ready to announce that day.”

The anchor wrapped up the segment by enthusiastically telling O’Rourke: “Beto, it is March 1st, maybe you made the decision yesterday and you’re waiting for it to go from in your head to tell the rest of us. We’re ready, any time you want to let us know, we’re here.”

It’s one thing to speculate on who may enter a presidential race, it’s another to openly root for your favorite candidate to launch a campaign.

Here is a transcript of the March 1 discussion:

9:44 AM ET

(...)

STEPHANIE RUHLE: Today’s March 1st, you know what that means? Where’s Beto? I was at his event with Oprah Winfrey, he said he would make his on decision whether to run by the end of the month. Last I checked, it is neither a Leap Year – February’s over.

JASON JOHNSON: Yeah, we’ve moved from Black History Month to Women’s History Month and he still hasn’t said anything, having told this black woman he was gonna make a decision. Look, my concern is that the longer that you wait, you start losing out on the good consultants, right? Because at this point, a lot of the best campaign managers out there –  

RUHLE: People would get on the Beto bus, come on now.

JOHNSON: They might, they might. But this sort of apprehension makes people concerned. Because they’re like, “Look, dude, this was your one promise, that you were going to give us an answer by now.” The other thing is this, he can’t run an unenthusiastic campaign. Like, he’s got to come out there and he might even have to explain why he didn’t make the decision by the end of the month of February. I think that Beto has probably, out of all the candidates, he has the greatest chance of both winning a nomination and actually beating the President. I think he is the only person who I can look at right now, and I'm fairly confident he can do both. But if he can’t even make a strong decision, he’s got no chance.

RUHLE: Well, Mike Bloomberg has gone out and hired the biggest, best, all-star team, a massive tech effort, and he’s got a whole lot of dough, he could just take that effort and pass it to Beto.

RICK TYLER: Beto can wait. I think he can wait. Because he’s got name ID, people know who he is. He’s a proven fund-raiser. He can electrify and excite the base. Maybe he’s just waiting for it to shake out. So we’ll see.

But I have to say this, if you’re invited to an event with Oprah Winfrey and you don’t announce for president, that’s like crazy.

RUHLE: I was in the audience and I was ready to announce.

TYLER: That’s crazy.

RUHLE: Yes, it’s crazy. Trust me, I was ready to announce that day. Well, we’ll see. Beto, it is March 1st, maybe you made the decision yesterday and you’re waiting for it to go from in your head to tell the rest of us. We’re ready, any time you want to let us know, we’re here.

(...)

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