Meet the Press host Chuck Todd on Friday conducted a total freak out, declaring that Donald Trump, who has been President for a scant 70 days, to be a “lame duck” “on the brink.” Keep in mind, from the day after the 2016 election through early January, the networks never once called the outgoing Barack Obama a “lame duck.”
Appearing on MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell Reports, Todd declared investigations into Trump and Russia as a sign of the end. He hyperventilated, “You have a presidency right now that I think is, it’s beyond saying it is in crisis mode.... It’s on the brink. The question is on the brink of what? Is it on the brink of collapse?”
Eager to parrot the efforts of Democrats, the journalist labeled Trump a lame duck: “Is it on the brink of becoming a temporarily lame duck presidency? And maybe it feels like it's lame duck-ish temporarily right now.”
Seventy days in and Trump is a lame duck? Remember, Todd is the same guy who, in an MSNBC ad, declared himself to be a “referee” enforcing the “rules” of politics. It’s hard to be a ref if you’re also a fan of one of the teams playing.
Todd concluded by speculating how unfit Trump would be to handle a major crisis: “The world must be panicked that if this President is tested right now, if western alliances are tested by a Putin in the Baltic, by North Korea, is the United States prepared to lead in a crisis right now for the world?”
A transcript of the exchange is below:
Andrea Mitchell Reports
ANDREA MITCHELL: Good day, I’m Andrea Mitchell at NATO headquarters in Brussels.
MITCHELL: Chuck Todd, of course, is the NBC News political director, the moderator of Meet the Press and host of MSNBC’s MTP Daily. Hey, Chuck. This, I mean it is really bizarre to be over here watching it from this perspective. You're hearing people, throughout Europe all these leaders when they come to Washington in the course of this last week, saying “What is going on in Washington?” And you have got Secretary Tillerson and Secretary Mattis at Downing Street today all trying to explain what the policy is, but it is countermanded by a tweet.
CHUCK TODD: Well, that’s right. And, look, you have a presidency right now that I think is, it’s beyond saying it is in crisis mode. It is, you know, it’s on the brink. The question is on the brink of what? Is it on the brink of collapse? Is it on the brink of becoming a temporarily lame duck presidency? And maybe it feels like it’s lame duck-ish temporarily right now. You’ve got a stalled agenda, Republicans who have no fear of this President right now. They don't think there is a political penalty to buck him.
Obviously, the Russia cloud darkens all of the time. And all it, Andrea, of course, all of these problems right now that they're dealing with front and center are self inflicted by one person, the president of the United States, who couldn’t help himself with a tweet on this wiretapping nonsense, which of course is essentially helped unravel ten days of all things Russia in their part of this story.
Then throw in the fact that he’s decided to he drive a wedge in his own party and go after the Freedom Caucus. Okay, but he has also attacking Democrats at the same time. He has to got to go find a governing dance partner and he is alienating both of his potential dance partners on that front. So on the normal political scale, he has got problems. Throw in the fact that you have a president that cannot accept the fact that Russia interfered in this election. And until he accepts that fact, this story is going to consume him. And my fear, Andrea, my question to you is this: The world must be panicked that if this President is tested right now, if western alliances are tested by a Putin in the Baltic, by North Korea, is the United States prepared to lead in a crisis right now for the world?