MSNBC Panelists Play Dumb on Why People Don’t Trust Susan Rice

As though it was a running theme for MSNBC on Wednesday night, multiple expert panelists acted as though they couldn’t understand why the public has trust issues with former UN Ambassador Susan Rice. “And one thing [President Donald Trump] said in the interview that is true, Susan Rice is not a particularly polished public performer,” declared New York Times journalist Glenn Thrush on Chris Matthews’ Hardball.

His excuses for Rice became even more ridiculous when he wrote off her Benghazi explanation. “We saw that on the Sunday shows after Benghazi. Sometimes she appears to be sort of defensive and a little bit skittish,” he argued. He completely skipped over the fact that when she bounced between those Sunday shows, she was trying to sell the Obama administration’s lie that the attack was because of an offensive YouTube video.

“She wasn't great on Andrea Mitchell yesterday. And this is a president whose very much looking, as you said, to change the narrative. And he pounced on it,” he continued in his defense, “But as you know, a lot of the experts that we've interviewed as an organization have said it is highly unlikely that Ambassador Rice’s behavior represents a widespread pattern of surveillance against the Trump campaign.”

Later in the night on Brian Williams’ The 11th Hour, one of Rice’s Obama administration colleagues couldn’t explain why people on the right had a distaste for her, and neither could Williams:

BRIAN WILLIAMS: So, Rick. And I mean this sincerely. What am I missing here? What is Susan Rice being accused of beyond that process we just agreed to?

RICK STENGEL: Well, first of all she's like a red flag to a bull for people on the right.

WILLIAMS: She's called Typhoid Mary.

STENGEL: I can’t explain why exactly.

And Stengel wasn’t the only former Obama official on Williams’ panel. Jeremy Bash was on as well to do what he does best, which is spread doubt about the President’s credibility on foreign policy and national security. “The American people have to believe that he's coming forward with facts, with evidence. That he's basing his statements on information, verifiable intelligence,” Bash cautioned, “And if he's just shooting from the hip or shooting from the lip without anything to back it up, he's not going to be able to be a credible commander and chief.”

Williams failed to mention that both of his guests were former colleagues of Rice and served under Obama together.

It’s an insult to the public’s intelligence for them to act as though no one remembers the lies Rice willingly propagated to deceive America. It’s a form of revisionist history to pretend that she doesn’t have a checkered past when it comes to telling the truth. MSNBC does a disservice to their viewers with this kind of dishonesty. 

Transcripts below:

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MSNBC
Hardball
April 5, 2017
7:27:30 PM Eastern

GLENN THRUSH: And one thing he said in the interview that is true, Susan Rice is not a particularly polished public performer. We saw that on the Sunday shows after Benghazi. Sometimes she appears to be sort of defensive and a little bit skittish. She wasn't great on Andrea Mitchell yesterday. And this is a president whose very much looking, as you said, to change the narrative. And he pounced on it. You know, that said, from are pertoireical perspective there are questions that need to be asked. But as you know, a lot of the experts that we've interviewed as an organization have said it is highly unlikely that Ambassador Rice’s behavior represents a widespread pattern of surveillance against the Trump campaign.

MSNBC
The 11th Hour
April 5, 2017
11:43:44 PM Eastern

JEREMY BASH: The target of the surveillance in the case that you referenced would be a foreign agent. Say for example the Russian ambassador. It's pursuant to a court order authorized by federal judges, with life time tenure, to conduct surveillance against that foreign target. And if an American happens to be talking to that target, say for example Mike Flynn, and you need understand the intelligence report, it's appropriate to understand who is talking to the Russian ambassador. That's done all the time. It's appropriate, lawful, and necessary to protect national security.

And I think President's allegation is not just incorrect, it's dangerous. Because when he's out there in the rose garden, talking about national security issues, all of the crisis we've been talking about on tonight’s broadcast, the American people have to believe that he's coming forward with facts, with evidence. That he's basing his statements on information, verifiable intelligence. And if he's just shooting from the hip or shooting from the lip without anything to back it up, he's not going to be able to be a credible commander and chief.

BRIAN WILLIAMS: So, Rick. And I mean this sincerely. What am I missing here? What is Susan Rice being accused of beyond that process we just agreed to?

RICK STENGEL: Well, first of all, she's like a red flag to a bull for people on the right.

WILLIAMS: She's called Typhoid Mary.

STENGEL: I can’t explain why exactly. But I think they're conflating the idea of unmasking with leaking. Unmasking, as Jeremy said—and no one understands unmasking better than Jeremy does-- is a perfectly normal request that you are making about a contact between a foreign person that you have a FISA court request to observe. That is not leaking it. That is not revealing it. 


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CyberAlerts Foreign Policy Russia Government Agencies Bias by Omission Conspiracy Theories Covert Liberal Activists Labeling Military Surveillance Political Scandals MSNBC Hardball The 11th Hour with Brian Williams Video Rick Stengel Brian Williams Glenn Thrush Donald Trump Susan Rice