Chuck Todd: Obama 'Nourishes' Me

NBC's Chuck Todd on Thursday night found a new way to compliment Barack Obama. Politicking host Larry King asked the Meet the Press anchor if he "liked" the President. Todd quickly responded "yes" and added, "I mean, he's very easy to talk to...You sit there and have these off-the-record sessions with him." 

The journalist enthused, "They're just very nourishing conversations." [MP3 audio here.] Nourishing? Earlier in November, the anchor defended the President's famous contention that "bitter Americans" "cling" to guns and religion. Todd mused that these attacks are simply Obama "observing the way an anthropologist would observe a society." 


    
In 2014, Todd speculated that the Republican governor of Kansas, Sam Brownback, might lose his reelection (he did not) and that Democrats might hold the Senate (they did not). On election night, he declared, "It's a good Republican night, but it's not a wave." (Todd later retracted that remark.) 

Later in the program, King, who has been exiled from CNN to something called Ora TV, tried to smear the President's opponents as racist: 

KING: But this seeming, like, hatred of [Obama] – McConnell saying we're going to be against him from day one. He tries to do things, for example, executive orders, he's issued much less than Clinton and Bush. And Clinton – Bush the first, then Reagan, did an executive order on immigration and now the Republicans are complaining about his same executive order on the same subject. How much of that is racial? 

Todd did not take the bait in regard to this attack. 

A partial transcript is below: 

Politicking With Larry King
11/20/14    
9:04

LARRY KING: An important thing for any politician to have, and you've covered them, and you maybe know more about them than anybody, is likability. He has that when he's running, doesn't he? 

CHUCK TODD: He does have it when he's running and it makes you wonder why doesn't he try and use that while inside Washington? He's one of these, he's really good at playing outside. Turning this into basketball metaphors since he loves playing basketball. He's got a great outside shot, Larry. Loves to go out into the public. It's the inside game that is lacking. 

KING: Do you like him? 

TODD: Oh, he's a very likable guy. Yes. 

KING: I agree. 

TODD: He's very friendly. I mean, he's very easy to talk to – You do – you sit there and have these off-the-record sessions with him. You've had them. And – They're just very nourishing conversations. 

...

9:05

KING: But this seeming, like, hatred of him – McConnell saying we're going to be against him from day one. He tries to do things, for example, executive orders, he's issued much less than Clinton and Bush. And Clinton – Bush the first, then Reagan, did an executive order on immigration and now the Republicans are complaining about his same executive order on the same subject. How much of that is racial? 

TODD: I don't know how much of it is race. I think there is – I think the immigration issue if you look at it under historical terms, we're having – whenever we have, whenever working class America feels as if they've got a jobs issue, and I think if you look at the uneven economic recovery, um, that working class whites in rural America feel as if the opportunities are being left behind by this recovery, whenever we have those moments, we usually have very heated, anti-immigrant policies or rhetoric that bubbles up in the populist movement. So, I think it has more about the economic anxiety than the race of the second term. 

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