MSNBC's supposedly most intelligent "news" anchor almost had a total meltdown on HBO's Real Time Friday.
When repeatedly asked by host Bill Maher and guest Nick Gillespie for her opinion of Massachusetts' healthcare program, Maddow whined like a little girl, "Leave me alone about RomneyCare, all of you" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
BILL MAHER, HOST: Mitt Romney said on the campaign trail last week, he said, “We're going to get rid of ObamaCare and return to personal responsibility.” This is the return to personal responsibility is ObamaCare.
MARK RUFFALO, ACTOR: Which is why it was RomneyCare in the first place.
NICK GILLESPIE, REASON: Wait, so now, so this is, to go back to the question, RomneyCare is something that you would agree with? You would say that’s a great Republican policy.
RACHEL MADDOW, MSNBC: You don't know anything about me.
GILLESPIE: I’m just asking.
MADDOW: You should start making your arguments in places other than, “Here’s the thing I’m assuming about you."
GILLESPIE: I’m sorry, it’s because I haven’t read your book or anything you’ve written.
RUFFALO: Why do you keep picking on her?
MADDOW: Just start from a…
MAHER: Wait, you're not for RomneyCare?
MADDOW: Start from something that’s not about me. Make it on your own terms.
GILLESPIE: Wait, so are you a fan of RomneyCare?
MADDOW: What, make your point.
GILLESPIE: I'm sorry, I'm asking.
MAHER: You're not for RomneyCare?
GILLESPIE: You’re not for RomneyCare?
MADDOW: Leave me alone about RomneyCare, all of you.
GILLESPIE: That’s a f—king no to me. I don’t…
MADDOW: Listen, my job is to cover these things, not to tell you how I like them or not.
Did I mention that this is supposedly the most intelligent person at MSNBC if not all of NBC News?
Yet when asked a simple question about her position on RomneyCare, she became childish, defensive, and downright foolish.
It's especially odd given how often she's spoken about the Massachusetts healthcare program, and in rather glowing terms.
This was from MSNBC's coverage of January's Florida primary:
MADDOW: Congressman Tom Rooney, honorary co-chairman of Mitt Romney`s campaign in Florida. Congratulations to you tonight as a Mitt Romney supporter with Mitt Romney the projected winner of the Florida Republican primary tonight.
I should note, as a person who lives in Massachusetts, when I hear people say there are 92 percent of people covered under Romneycare, that's almost exactly the percent of people in Massachusetts covered under Romneycare, 92 percent of the people without insurance, because of Mitt Romney's good healthcare plan.
So on MSNBC, Maddow's comfortable calling it "Mitt Romney's good healthcare plan."
But when asked about this by Gillespie and Maher Friday night, she behaved like a kindergartner being taunted with a spider.
As for her claim, "My job is to cover these things, not to tell you how I like them or not," isn't calling RomneyCare "good" telling people she likes it?
In reality, the entire so-called "news" network she works for is full of people constantly telling viewers what they do and don't like rather than just "covering these things."
Any pretense to the contrary is preposterous. Judging from Maher's response, it appeared even he agreed.
I guess this is what happens when MSNBC's supposedly most intelligent anchor gets out of her comfort zone and is actually asked unscripted questions.
Kind of like President Obama without his trust teleprompter.
(HT NB reader John Watson)
— Noel Sheppard (@NoelSheppard) June 9, 2012