Surprise! Morning Joe Praises Fox News, Criticizes DNC's FNC Ban

April 17th, 2019 7:54 AM

MSNBC: the place for praise of Fox News? Hardly! But today's Morning Joe did offer up a surprising dose of praise for Fox News, and criticism of DNC chairman Tom Perez for nixing the notion of the network hosting a Dem presidential debate. Now, if only the hosts at MSNBC could work on being fair to Republicans and conservatives. 

The unexpected remarks came in reaction to yesterday's Bernie Sanders town hall on FNC, hosted by Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum. Mika Brzezinski began the parade of praise, noting that Fox is making an effort to be open to different points of view, "and I think it's great." Noting that FNC had invited a politically-diverse audience to the town hall, Mika said, "that's called TV news. That's called covering a campaign."

After Willie Geist reported that DNC chairman Tom Perez is not reconsidering his decision to deprive FNC the chance to host a Dem presidential debate, Mike Barnicle said that Perez "is so far off the mark." Mika seconded Barnicle's notion, saying "no, don't [ban FNC]." Barnicle also urged Dem candidates to go on with Tucker Carlson, saying, "if you're afraid of Tucker Carlson, how are you going to become President of the United States?"



A number of FNC personalities came in for praise, with Mika singling out Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum as people that she and Joe Scarborough "love . . . they're great."

Other FNC personalities favorably mentioned were Chris Wallace, Bill Hemmer, and, yes, Shep Smith.

Of course, it's easy for MSNBC to praise Fox News when FNC is being fair and balanced with Democrats. How about MSNBC looking in the mirror and considering how fair it and parent NBC have been to Republican candidates?

Note: I think it's smart for Fox News to have folks such as Baier and MacCallum, in addition to the evening line-up of Carlson and Hannity. But Shep Smith? Sorry, that's a bridge too far!

A transcript is below. Click "expand" to read more. 

Morning Joe
6:05 am EDT

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: Fox, I think, is making an effort, and I think it's great, to open the doors to different points of view.

. . . 

WILLIE GEIST: The Democratic National Committee chairman, Tom Perez, said Monday the party is not reconsidering it's decision not to hold a debate on Fox News . . . Now, at least three other Democratic candidates reportedly are open to a Fox town hall, including South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

. . . 

MIKA: I think Bernie Sanders did great. He was believable. He was likable. He said things that the audience really wanted to hear. And Fox did a good job, having a diverse audience in there. That's called TV news. That's called covering a campaign.

. . . 

MIKE BARNICLE: Tom Perez is a very good guy. And I like him. But he is so far off the mark here, banning Fox News.

MIKA: No: don't do it . . . I know Joe has talked about this: we love Bret Baier and Martha: they're great, they're good journalists along with Shep over there. Fox has some good people.

. . . 

BARNICLE: If you're afraid of Tucker Carlson, how are you going to become President of the United States? Go on to Fox News.

. . . 

GEIST: I understand why some people wouldn't want to do an interview with Sean Hannity, who was an adviser to the president. But, we now have evidence from Bret Baier and Martha MacCallum, as you said, Shep Smith --

MIKA: They do a great job.

GEIST: And Chris Wallace, and Bill Hemmer. You can go on and on and on about people over there who will give you a fair shake.