Even the liberal hosts of MSNBC's Morning Joe on Thursday seemed somewhat perplexed on how to fully cheerlead for Joe Biden’s proposed solution for combating pain at the gas pump.
Mika Brzezinski added that the President “is also asking states to suspend their own gas taxes which he says could bring prices down as much as $1 per gallon.” But to her dismay, “many economists and lawmakers from both parties view the idea with skepticism and suggest it won't do much to help consumers.”
Brzezinski appeared shocked when she learned that Nancy Pelosi was “noncommittal” to Biden’s idea, but did not seem at all surprised when learning that Senator Mitch McConnell “quickly dismissed the idea calling it quote, ' silly proposal.'"
Joe Scarborough expressed his outrage over McConnell’s skepticism asking: “why is that a silly idea,” further asking “can the government not take enough of Americans’ money?”
Interesting. Scarborough and his wife’s outrage was only directed at McConnell, with no criticism being thrown at Pelosi’s way despite her also not being on board. If MSNBC hosts really care about all Americans stressing at the gas station, then why is the outrage only directed at the GOP if both sides are skeptical?
It seemed like the two were so up-in-arms over McConnell’s criticism that they took a coffee break mid-show, turning the show over to Willie Geist until they were composed enough to come back on.
Geist asked Former Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO) about the Democrats’ “tepid support” of Biden’s proposed tax holiday. McCaskill was expressive of her worries over the White House not being “focused as they should be on projecting strength” and that it’s a “political misstep” and “makes the President look weak.”
Shockingly McCaskill conceded, “I mean, Americans want a strong president.” She further griped at her own party for trying to clean up everything Biden says.
“It's a little bit like how they try to clean up on aisle 5 when he has a gaffe and they say 'Well, he didn't really mean that.' They should not do that!”, further adding that they should just let him speak.
Well, after all the gaffes he’s had since even before entering into office, most Americans would not be too keen on agreeing with that last sentence.
White House Bureau Chief at Politico Jonathan Lemire joined the conversation adding that he noticed how “the President also defied by his own party on issues like voting rights and Build Back Better.” He then asked Morning Joe economic analyst Steve Rattner about gas prices and Biden’s proposed temporary relief.
Before this answer, Rattner added: “Well, before I do that, fun fact for today when we talk about Democratic leaders being opposed to this. In 2008, Barack Obama called it a gimmick when it was proposed during his campaign by his opponent.”
The bottom line is that this is not about the American people, but about the desperate attempt by MSNBC hosts to save a floundering President and his Democratic Party. And the reality is terrifying to McCaskill and the rest of the leftist MSNBC crew.
Click "expand" to view the full transcript.
MSNBC’s Morning Joe
June 23, 2022
6:29:33 a.m. Eastern
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: President Biden is also asking states to suspend their own gas taxes which he says could bring prices down as much as $1 per gallon. That would make a difference. But many economists and lawmakers from both parties view the idea with skepticism and suggest it won't do much to help consumers. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was noncommittal on it. Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell quickly dismissed the idea calling it quote: "A silly proposal."
JOE SCARBOROUGH: What, wait, he wants to cut taxes on—
BRZEZINSKI: That’s not silly.
SCARBOROUGH: he wants to cut taxes on—
BRZEZINSKI: How could that be silly?
SCARBOROUGH: on fuel prices when people are suffering, why is that a silly idea?
BRZEZINSKI: You can’t just like criticize everything.
SCARBOROUGH: Is there just -- can the government not take enough of Americans' money? No, I'm serious. Joe Biden wants to give Americans some money back at the pump. When they're suffering. Why does Mitch McConnell think it's silly to help working class Americans because his proposal actually would help working class Americans the most.
BRZEZINSKI: Question, question.
SCARBOROUGH: It would help middle class Americans the most.
BRZEZINSKI: What do Republicans have? What have they offered? What are their ideas? I'd love to know how they would save the economy. You know what, wouldn't it be great if maybe they have better ideas?
7:34:21 a.m. Eastern
WILLIE GEIST: So Claire, obviously the White House wants to be seen as doing everything it can about gas prices and inflation so this may be more symbolic than anything else. What do you make of the concept of the gas tax holiday and the-- tepid support, let’s call it that, even from Democrats?
CLAIRE MCCASKILL: Well, I worry that the White House isn't focused as they should be on projecting strength. And whether it is a good idea or a bad idea, what is really bad is when a president announces a program and his own party is not fully behind him. So I say there's a political misstep here because it makes the President look weak that -- he's got -- he's already got—strength, is he exuding enough strength?
I mean Americans want a strong president. So this is bad for him. It's a little bit like how they try to clean up on aisle 5 when he has a gaffe and they say “well, he didn't really mean that.” They should not do that! They should let him say what he’s going to say.
JONATHAN LEMIRE: To Claire's point on political weakness or the appearance thereof, the President also defied by his own party on issues like voting rights and Build Back Better, this sort of adds to that, White House aides are concerned. So Steve, you just walked through this, about how little impact this will have if it indeed even comes to be, so long term, what does change this? What eventually will lead to gas prices going back down?
STEVE RATTNER: Well, before I do that, fun fact for today when we talk about Democratic leaders being opposed to this. In 2008, Barack Obama called it a gimmick when it was proposed during his campaign by his opponent. Look what's-- unfortunately, we're just in a tough place. We, you know, we had this explosion in demand due to the pandemic. People are out there, they're buying things, it's created inflation. And the only way to reduce inflation is to reduce demand, usage, whatever you want to call it.
And so Jay Powell testified yesterday, the chairman of the Federal Reserve, that a recession is not impossible. I think most of us think a recession is somewhere between likely and inevitable, and that's unfortunately what it's going to take to bring down inflation, bring down all these price increases is simply in the short run less demand, longer run it creates more supply. But again you can't simply turn these things back on, you can't simply drill a well and have it come online in 30 days.