With the latest sexual harassment news about MSNBC's Chris Matthews having to pay a $40,000 settlement to an assistant producer for Hardball in 1999, can anybody be really surprised? The reason is that Matthews over the years has a record of very strange behavior of a leering nature around women, much of it recorded for posterity. Two notable examples are presented below, starting with the the uncomfortable 2007 incident in which Matthews asked then-CNBC's Street Signs host Erin Burnett to lean in closer to the camera so he could get a better look at her (and presumably her chest).
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Could you get a little closer to the camera?
ERIN BURNETT: What is it? Is it (garbled) in strangely?
MATTHEWS: Come in closer...no...come in...come in further...come in closer...really close.
(Burnett leans towards camera.)
BURNETT: What are you, what are you doing?
MATTHEWS: Haw! Haw! Just kidding! You look great! Anyway, thank... Erin it's great to have...look at that look... You're great...
BURNETT: I don't even know. I'm going to have to go look at the tape here. I'm in a strange location.
MATTHEWS (laughing): No, you're beautiful! I'm just kidding! I'm just kidding! You're a knockout! Anyways thank you, Erin Burnett. It's alright getting bad news from you even. Okay. Thanks for coming on Hardball.
Yeeesh! Talk about an uncomfortable moment.
Rewinding back to May 2016, Matthews was speaking to then-Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer (Calif.) when he repeatedly went off-track from policy and Boxer's new book to talk about how good-looking she was. For the NewsBusters post on that creepy moment, go here (plus stay for the loony screencamps).
Another similar moment occurred more recently in 2016 right after Donald Trump won the important Indiana primary when Matthews was caught gushing buckets of drool on a hot mic over Melania Trump as you can hear in the video below.
CHRIS MATTHEWS: Did you see her walk? Runway walk. My God, is that good! ...I could watch that runway show!
If we hear of more such antics about Chris Matthews in the near future, don't be too surprised. It definitely fits a pattern.