Rachel Maddow obviously doesn’t have to be hosting her liberal weeknight show on MSNBC to take advantage of any opportunity to slam President Donald Trump.
Her latest chance came while she was a guest on the Thursday evening edition of NBC’s Tonight Show, when host Jimmy Fallon sang her praises “as the best person to talk to about all the tweets” the GOP occupant of the White House is posting about the national anthem controversy in National Football League games instead of the hurricane that has left Puerto Rico in tatters.
Puerto Rico's going to need a lot of help for a long time, but this isn't over. I mean, the crisis is real.
We're eight days into this for the island, and it really seems like the problem is not that there aren't relief supplies or that there aren't people who want to help or who are trying to help. It's that it's just not organized.
“I mean there's something like 9,000 shipping containers full of food and water and medical supplies sitting in the port of San Juan,” she continued, “and nobody's organized an effort to get that stuff out of the port and onto the streets, and into the communities that need it.”
“So it's not that there hasn't been a response,” Maddow added. “It's just been a bad, inept, poorly run, inattentive response with no political leadership,” and this reaction “is a man-made disaster.”
“Yeah, this was a storm, but the response is a politically led catastrophe by a president who really doesn't seem to care,” she asserted.
Maddow went on: “The president for Puerto Rico is Donald Trump. He's all they've got to lead this, and it's A, it's not over, and B, the disorganization is a human failure.”
In addition, she stated: “The other thing is that whether or not you care about what he thinks about the NFL, it’s slightly outrageous that he spent the entire weekend tweeting about the NFL while Puerto Rico was drowning.”
“Before he could say a thing about what was happening there -- there’s three and a half million Americans in Puerto Rico -- and the president was really preoccupied with trying to make a racial issue out of the NFL while he wasn’t doing anything about that,” she claimed.
“And that, I think, is going to stick, and I think that’s going to be in – that’s going to be in his history no matter what else he does.”
Fallon then interjected: “Man, it's just so sad to watch. I feel like helpless watching Puerto Rico, and I -- I'm donating to whatever charities we can -- .”
Maddow replied: “Well, I mean, definitely donating to legit relief efforts matters.”
At that point, Fallon again rained compliments on the MSNBC anchor:
How do you not have gray hair from doing your show because there’s so many things to discuss?
I want to say, regarding your show, you’re doing such a great job. You always have, but I think you’re just in your groove right now. You’ve tripled your audience. I was reading that today. I think that’s true, but does it feel different?
“I don’t think about it, really,” Maddow replied. “In terms of more people watching, I just -- I don’t know.”
“When you walk down the street,” The Tonight Show host asked, “do more people go, like, ‘Great job’ or ‘Hey, what’s up?’ Do you feel it?”
“I have a special bond with taxi drivers, I will admit,” she noted.
“They just get into a big political conversation with you?” Fallon inquired.
“Taxi drivers -- You get in a cab in New York, and the cab drivers just spin the globe,” Maddow noted. The driver “really can be from anywhere.”
“If there’s a brand new country that was only born three weeks ago,” she continued, “you will have a cab driver from that country this month.”
“Something happens,” the MSNBC anchor stated. “I get into a cab, and it’s like as soon as I make eye contact, no matter where that dude is from, like Burkina Faso (a land-locked country in West Africa),” the driver tells her she’s on the air in that nation, and his mother watches her there.
“So that’s always been awesome,” she added. “You can’t get on TV and think: ‘Oh, there are millions of people watching me.’ You can’t have that in your head when you do it or it just freezes you up.”
“Well, I think you’re doing such a great job,” Fallon noted as a final compliment.
Of course, Trump has said many times he’s not reacting to the Puerto Rico crisis because of racism, but like most other liberal Democrats, Maddow won’t even consider that possibility.