Nuns on the Bus tour leader Sister Simone Campbell appeared on MSNBC's The Cycle on Thursday afternoon to discuss her ministry, which predictably led to her left-wing agenda becoming the focal point of the conversation. The only host to take issue with her talking points was token conservative S.E. Cupp, who was armed with facts and figures that the good sister could not rebut except by adamantly insisting they were "really wrong." That's when it started getting a little tense. [ video below, MP3 audio here ]

 



For adman Donny Deutsch, there's really no difference between pushing a political party or a bag of potato chips: it's all about the branding.  S.E. Cupp, in contrast, is a conservative with bedrock principles.

Seated next to each other on today's Morning Joe set during a discussion on GOP strategy going forward, a blow-up was clearly in the cards.  And clash they did, with Cupp arguing that the GOP doesn't need to re-brand itself, but rather to "spend more time explaining why their policies work for everyone."  Deutsch, repeatedly trying to cut Cupp off, exclaimed that she "couldn't be more wrong" and that her anti-re-branding argument was "absurd." View the animated video after the jump.



A war broke out on the set of HBO’s Real Time Friday when MSNBC’s sole conservative commentator S.E. Cupp had the nerve to say that Barack Obama’s foreign policy was no different than former President George W. Bush’s.

In the midst of the shouting, actor Samuel L. Jackson said to Cupp, “You don’t want to f—k with Dick Cheney" (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):



Stop the presses! Stop the presses!

On HBO's Real Time Friday, Democratic strategist James Carville - yes, I said Democratic strategist James Carville - scolded the Daily Beast's Andrew Sullivan for always blaming Republicans (video follows with transcript and commentary):



For the second time in less than two weeks, Andrew Sullivan's ignorance was revealed on national television.

Following George Will and PBS's Gwen Ifill on ABC's This Week last month, MSNBC's sole conservative commentator S.E. Cupp assisted Sullivan with looking like a total moron on HBO's Real Time Friday (video follows with transcript and commentary):



The liberal panelists of MSNBC's The Cycle did their level best to help University of Pennsylvania religion professor Anthea Butler defend her now infamous tweet that the filmmaker behind the "Innocence of Muslims" video trailer on YouTube should be throw in jail. Co-host Toure Neblett went so far as to denounce the Twitter "mob" that deluged Butler's Twitter account with critical tweets. Only conservative S.E. Cupp pushed back against Butler by insisting that the YouTube video was a fig leaf justification by Islamists for violence.

"We think of this [free speech] as like an absolute right, but in fact there are limits.... So in this global world where a video clip can get spread around like wildfire, is it in fact going too far, is that beyond our constitutionally-guaranteed freedom of speech?" co-host Krystal Ball asked Butler. [MP3 audio here]



The day before the Supreme Court ruled ObamaCare's individual mandate constitutional -- as a tax, not as an exercise of the commerce clause -- the mostly-liberal panel at the brand-new 3 p.m. program The Cycle explored the question of what, in the view of the panelists, that government should consider making Americans do against their will.

For her part, panelist Krystal Ball insisted that America should be more like Australia, which forces its citizens to vote in it federal elections or else to pay a fine. Unsurprisingly, Ball's fellow liberal panelists Toure Neblett, and Steve Kornacki were sympathetic to the proposal, with only conservative panelist S.E. Cupp denouncing it as antithetical to the notion of political liberty.



Alex Schriver, the Chairman of the College Republican National Committee, totally schooled MSNBC's new co-host Touré Neblett Tuesday on why young people in America aren't just Democrats.

Schriver did such a marvelous job that you have to wonder if MSNBC's new program The Cycle will consider inviting him back on (video follows with transcript and commentary):



MSNBC host Alex Wagner has made no secret of her disdain for the Second Amendment, telling Bill Maher last November that if it were up to her, she'd repeal the amendment which enshrines the right of Americans to keep and bear arms, saying the right to own firearms is not "in the grand scheme" of things as important as the rights to speech and assembly. Back in February, Wagner seized on a tragic school shooting to complain about the lack of new gun control legislation.

So it's no surprise that, when turning again to the topic of gun control and gun rights today, Wagner would stack the deck in favor of the former and dismiss concerns about the latter. Regarding legislation in New York State that would require "microstamping" of firearms, Wagner brought on Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence president Dan Gross, who insisted the legislation in question was "a simple case of right versus wrong" that should face no legitimate criticism from gun rights advocates.



Liberal historian and biographer Douglas Brinkley is out with a new book about the late Walter Cronkite and in its pages lie plenty of revelations that damage the late anchor's objective journalist "halo," according to media critic Howard Kurtz, who reviewed the book for the Daily Beast. Among other things, Brinkley wrote about how the allegedly Cronkite bugged a committee room at the 1952 Republican convention, how he literally begged liberal Sen. Robert Kennedy to jump into the 1968 presidential race, and how the avuncular family man figure had a penchant for partying at topless bars.

Yet on the May 31 edition of Now with Alex Wagner, neither Brinkley nor Wagner nor anyone else on the panel brought up any of those interesting revelations, focusing instead on such trivialities as how Cronkite, who got his start in the wire service UPI, perfected his on-air news-reading skills. [MP3 audio here; video follows page break] [Related: Read the MRC's Cronkite "Profile in Bias" here]



Comparing conservatives to Hitler is old-and-busted. The new hotness, if you ask Martin Bashir, is comparing them to Stalin.

A few months ago, you may recall, Bashir compared Rick Santorum to the long-dead Soviet dictator. Now it's the state of Florida, more specifically, the conservative Republican Rick Scott, who is getting the honors. "Why is the Sunshine State in the midst of a purge that even Josef Stalin would admire?" Bashir rhetorically asked on the way out to an ad break on today's program. The "purge," by the way, is one admitted by a Democratic official in Broward County, Florida, to be "very, very microscopic" in nature.



Bill Maher on Friday evening once again displayed a level of ignorance and intolerance that should completely disqualify him as a political commentator.

On HBO's Real Time, the vulgar anti-theist said Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney doesn't give to charity. "All his charitable donations are to Mormons. He gives to his cult. That’s not a charity. They're not poor people" (video follows with transcript and commentary, serious vulgarity warning):