Washington, D.C. — Late Thursday night, a boisterous crowd of nearly 800 conservatives and guests packed the National Building Museum for the Media Research Center’s 2016 Gala featuring the DisHonors Awards. After the audience selected the most outrageous quote in four categories, the crowd singled out Melissa Harris-Perry for the ultimate "dishonor" of being the MRC's "Quote of the Year."
Harris-Perry earned the distinction after winning the "Dan Rather Memorial Award for Stupidest Analysis" earlier in the evening. She may no longer be on MSNBC, but her legacy lives on with the stupidest analysis, according to this year’s judges and audience. According to the then-host in October of 2015, one should avoid words like “hard worker” because it’s somehow... racist?
The quote in question came during an exchange she had with guest and MRC Latino Guide to Conservative Hispanic Speakers member Alfonso Aguilar about the term “hard worker” being racist back when Harris-Parry still had an MSNBC show on October 24, 2015.
Alfonso Aguilar, Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles: “If there’s somebody who is a hard worker when he goes to Washington, it’s Paul Ryan....”
Host Melissa Harris-Perry: “I want us to be super careful when we use the language ‘hard worker,’ because I actually keep an image of folks working in cotton fields on my office wall, because it is a reminder about what hard work looks like. So, I feel you that he’s a hard worker, I do, but in the context of relative privilege.”
— Exchange on MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry, October 24, 2015.
Following the honoring of country music star and columnist Charlie Daniels as the 2016 recipient of the “William F. Buckley Jr. Award for Media Excellence,” the Weekly Standard's Stephen Hayes and Conservative Review chief political correspondent Deneen Borelli presented the four categories that comprise the DisHonors Awards: the "Hail Hillary Award," the "Damn Those Conservatives to Hell Award," the "Celebrity Dumbass Award" and the "Dan Rather Memorial Award for Stupidest Analysis."
After watching the three nominated quotes, attendees at each of the 80 tables discussed the quotes and then, by electronic device, each of the table captains cast the choice on behalf of the table.
"Hail Hillary Award"
MSNBC host Joy Reid beat out stiff, Hillary-loving competition for this award. Though other journalists have fawned over the Democrat, Reid in April breathlessly insisted that no one compares to Clinton, except, perhaps, Founding Fathers John Adams and Thomas Jefferson.
On April 8, Reid dropped by Andrea Mitchell’s program and gushed praise for Hillary Clinton to the point that she wondered if there’s ever been anymore more qualified to be president “since the Founding Fathers.”
Correspondent Joy Reid: “If you look at Hillary Clinton’s qualifications, I mean, my God, since the Founding Fathers, has anyone tried to run for president with more on their resume?”
Host Andrea Mitchell: “John Quincy Adams, maybe.”
Reid: “Maybe John Quincy Adams. True, true, true. Jefferson, Adams, I mean you have to go back literally to the 18th century to find somebody with a more packed resume than Hillary Clinton.”
— Exchange on noontime hour of MSNBC’s Place for Politics, April 8.
For more on that award, go here.
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"Damn Those Conservatives to Hell Award"
Just how awful are conservatives? Ask MSNBC's Hardball host Chris Matthews. He ran away with the “Damn Those Conservatives to Hell” award by trashing Ted Cruz for possessing a "troll-like quality...operat[ing] below the level of human life."
Matthews made these tasteless comments about Cruz on the February 10 Morning Joe:
“There’s a troll-like quality to Cruz. He operates below the level of human life.”
— MSNBC’s Chris Matthews on Morning Joe, February 10.
For more on that award, go here.
"Celebrity Dumbass Award"
The title of “celebrity dumbass” turned on the disdain for one of our nation's founding documents. Bill Maher won for a June 2016 quote in which he said the U.S. Constitution "sucks" and called for a "page one re-write."
His comments were in reaction to the House and Senate choosing not to pass liberal gun control measures following the Islamic terror attack in Orlando:
“I saw David Cameron today. You know, I’m up at 2:00 in the morning when this all happens. So I watched his whole speech and it’s like ‘well, I lost the vote, I graciously leave office.’ It’s like their system works so beautifully. We can’t even get a vote on something that 90 percent of Americans agree on and can’t get a vote. Our system sucks. It really does. The Constitution needs a page one re-write.”
– Bill Maher on HBO’s Real Time, June 24, reacting the House not taking up gun control bills and the Brexit vote in Britain.
For more on the "Dumbass Award," as well as presenter Deneen Borelli and acceptor Lt. Gen. (Ret.) William G. Boykin, go here.
For the best moments from the 2016 DisHonors, go here.