On her 9:00 a.m. ET hour show on Monday, MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle denied that 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris might be too far left for some voters and instead tarred critics of the California senator as racists who just thought Harris was “too black.”
The discussion began with Ruhle asking about Michigan Congressman Justin Amash leaving the Republican Party and reportedly considering his own 2020 bid to challenge President Trump. Republican pollster Chris Wilson noted that an Amash candidacy may actually hurt Democrats by siphoning off potential support from never-Trump Republicans who were “not going to be able to vote for an Elizabeth Warren or a Kamala Harris or a Bernie Sanders.”
Ruhle was puzzled by his inclusion of Harris when listing some of the far-left presidential contenders: “Why not a Kamala Harris?” Wilson explained: “Just because she’s a little bit too far left...” Ruhle seemed shocked by that statement and demanded: “In what policy?” Wilson laughed and replied: “Oh, my gosh, where do you want me to start?” Ruhle then played the race card against her guest: “Well, tell me. Because it sounds like it’s more she’s too black.”
Wilson was visibly disturbed by the fact that the anchor would just casually hurl charges of racism: “Okay, no....I mean, that’s absurd, Stephanie.”
Still protesting the notion that Harris held left-wing views, Ruhle pressed: “Then tell me, what policy is too far left?” Wilson started citing examples: “If you want me to go through each one of Kamala Harris’s positions, she took positions against private insurance, which most Americans are against. She took a position for open borders...”
He then blasted Ruhle for trying to smear critics of Harris as racist: “I think the fact is, to make that comparison as if there is some – because of the color of her skin is really a little bit too 1960 for my taste and it’s not a fair statement.”
Rather than accept the accurate observation that Democrats like Harris hold radical liberal views on a variety of issues, Ruhle tried to immediately shut down the discussion with lazy and unfounded allegations of racial prejudice.
Here is a transcript of the July 8 exchange:
9:47 AM ET
STEPHANIE RUHLE: Chris, let’s change topics. Justin Amash, he just left the Republican Party. Before doing so, he was the only House Republican who was pushing the idea to call for an impeachment inquiry into President Trump. He’s now saying he is not ruling out a potential 2020 run. If and how does that complicate things for the President’s reelection campaign?
CHRIS WILSON [WPA INTELLIGENCE CEO]: I actually think it doesn’t complicate them at all. In fact, it may actually help them. Because there are a lot of people out there, Republicans, who have sentiments left over from 2016 who define themselves as never Trumpers it will do is help him. Republicans have sentiments left over from 2016 who would define themselves as never-Trumpers, that are probably looking for someone else to vote for. They didn’t vote for Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump. If Joe Biden were the nominee they might be able to vote for him, but they’re not going to be able to vote for an Elizabeth Warren or a Kamala Harris or a Bernie Sanders. And so what Amash may do is give them a – give them a siphon –
RUHLE: Why not a Kamala Harris?
WILSON: Just because she’s a little bit too far left I think from a standpoint –
RUHLE: In what policy?
WILSON: Oh, my gosh, where do you want me to start? I mean, from the standpoint of private –
RUHLE: Well, tell me. Because it sounds like it’s more she’s too black.
WILSON: Okay, no.
RUHLE: No, then tell me what policy –
WILSON: I mean, that’s absurd, Stephanie.
RUHLE: Then tell me, what policy is too far left? To say Bernie Sanders, Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren, I just want to understand. I get –
WILSON: Well, maybe Bernie Sanders is too old. Why didn’t you go there first?
RUHLE: But I get the Bernie and Elizabeth Warren. I just want to understand –
WILSON: And you think there’s really that much separation ideologically between the three of them?
RUHLE: Well, tell me where there isn’t?
WILSON: I mentioned them because they are the three frontrunners, that’s why I brought that up, for no other reason than that. If you want me to go through each one of Kamala Harris’s positions, she took positions against private insurance, which most Americans are against. She took a position for open borders –
RUHLE: She rolled that back.
WILSON: Okay, but then she may roll it up again if she starts to drop in the polls. I think the fact is, to make that comparison as if there is some – because of the color of her skin is really a little bit too 1960 for my taste and it’s not a fair statement.