I guess “The Place for Politics” has become “The Place to Dance Around Obama Scandals.”
MSNBC’s Joy Reid was so desperate to stifle the growing scandals facing the IRS, she brought a hip-hop artist on Saturday’s The Ed Show to critique the dance moves of IRS employees. Guest-hosting for the weekend show, Reid spent five minutes interviewing musician Cupid about his dance, the Cupid Shuffle.
The dance is at the center of another IRS scandal, after the agency spent at least $60,000 of taxpayer money producing a training video that featured employees learning the dance. The controversy is just one of many facing the IRS, which recently admitted to spending tens of millions of dollars on conferences for its employees.
Of course, Reid was content to dismiss the scandals as merely Congress scrutinizing “an awkward dance video.” But she obviously felt the need to distract from the IRS’s woes, bringing on Cupid to puff up the sympathetic piece:
The video depicts the struggles of IRS agents to learn how to Cupid Shuffle. But Cupid, the man behind the original shuffle, isn’t getting any credit. His moves are making serious waves across Congress and YouTube alike. So let's see what the fuss is all about.
The left-wing host made no other mention of the congressional hearings, instead opting to quiz Cupid on the dance skills of the employees:
You saw the awkward attempt to dance, including the punch move. I think the punch move was one of them, of those poor, beleaguered IRS employees. Can you critique their move? What did they do wrong, Cupid?
What did they do wrong? Perhaps it was the tens of thousands of dollars and countless man hours spent producing a parody piece. Or maybe the “Spending Culture and Conference Abuses” of the IRS in general. Cupid’s answer?:
CUPID: First of all, I think that they weren’t loose enough. They didn't get a chance to get a full stretch.
REID [laughing]: So you have to stretch, I should write that down.
The conversation continued for several minutes, touching on important topics like Chuck E. Cheese, family barbecues, and Cupid’s new song “Do It with Your Boots On.” Reid didn’t even mention the staggering abuses in spending by the IRS – though she had no problem berating New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) for the costs of a special election earlier in the show.
I never thought I’d pine for the return of Ed Schultz to his bombastic show, but at least he talked about real news.
The relevant transcript is below:
The Ed Show
5:53 p.m. Eastern
JOY REID: Welcome back. The Congressional Oversight Committee held yet another IRS hearing this week. Congressman Darrell Issa continues to enjoy the spotlight, leading the charge of uncovering the truth about the IRS scandal. Thursday's hearing focused on a now-viral video of IRS members dancing. That’s right: Congress is spending time and effort to scrutinize an awkward dance video. The video depicts the struggles of IRS agents to learn how to Cupid Shuffle. But Cupid, the man behind the original shuffle, isn’t getting any credit. His moves are making serious waves across Congress and YouTube alike. So let's see what the fuss is all about. [Start video.]
IRS VIDEO ANNOUNCER: At an undisclosed location, world-famous dance instructor [name redacted] brought together a ragtag group of SBSE executives. Their dream: to become the next great dance sensation. This is their story.
UNIDENTIFIED IRS EMPLOYEE: No you're not just getting in class. Get in line now.
So challenging to teach them even though the lyrics are the directions to the dance. My goodness. [End video.]
REID: And joining me now is the man behind the shuffle, musician Cupid. Cupid, thanks so much for being here.
CUPID: Hey, my friend, how are you today?
REID: I’m doing really well. So now, you saw that video. You saw the awkward attempt to dance, including the punch move. I think the punch move was one of them, of those poor, beleaguered IRS employees. Can you critique their move? What did they do wrong, Cupid?
CUPID: First of all, I think that they weren’t loose enough. They didn't get a chance to get a full stretch. I did notice an injury. There was someone who had a cast on. It seems as though there was some injuries prior to the actual video being shot.
REID: So you have to stretch, I should write that down. You don't want to be injured when doing it. Now, when people are learning the Cupid Shuffle, do you find that people find it difficult to follow the moves? I mean, you do say ‘to the left,’ and then you say ‘to the left’ again, followed by ‘to the right, to the right.’ Why is it so difficult for people to do?
CUPID: Awkwardly enough, that's one of the songs that, like, has the directions implemented in every verse. So it's kind of hard for me to understand why people mess it up. I think they just kind of think a little too much about it. It's got to be the easiest dance to do in the world which, I guess, is why the IRS chose to use it for their powwow.
REID: I don't think that says good things about them that they couldn't do it. Well Cupid, tell us a little bit about the origin of this dance that has taken America by storm. When did you write it? And were you surprised at how big of a hit it's become? It’s a party staple.
CUPID: Yes, it's an American staple by far. It started in 2007, I released it, it's become almost a viral sensation. It's one of those songs that – it's timeless. You hear it in different Chuck E. Cheese, you may hear it at water parks, amusement parks, family reunions. It's just great to know my music brings that type of element to the world and makes people feel good. Again, to have the IRS, a group that people don't really look at as super friendly, for them to use it to bring – shed light on their job, I thought that was pretty cool.
REID: I have been to many a Chuck E. Cheese, with the children. And you're right, the Cupid Shuffle is a staple there. Well, Cupid, you were recently on another one of my favorite shows on NBC, "The Voice." And that sort of gave people an opportunity to see you in person. You’re a lot younger, I think a lot of people were surprised at how young you are. Do you have another hit in you? Is there another Cupid Shuffle coming out – of you, of Cupid?
CUPID: Absolutely, I have two new singles – one is called "Do It with Your Boots On,” which is very viral. We have over half a million hits on that video. And also one called "The Dade County Dip” that’s about to come out. My music is that backyard barbecue music. If you want to feel good and have a good time, there’s the Cupid Shuffle, the ‘Love Slide,’ ‘Do It with Your Boots On.’ All these songs – that you can go on YouTube and learn the dances and bring them to your party. So, I got a few.
REID: Thank you very much. Well Cupid, we really appreciate it. You brought so much joy to the IRS. Do it with your boots on, but not your cast. Thank you so much, Cupid.
CUPID: Thank you.
REID: That is The Ed Show. I am Joy Reid, in for Ed Schultz. We'll see you tomorrow at 5:00 p.m. Goodnight.