The Daily Caller has published an explosive story on MSNBC “Hardball” host Chris Matthews that details allegations of an “abusive” on-set environment.
In the piece, guests and at least two former producers describe their alleged experiences working alongside the bombastic TV talk show front man:
MSNBC Host Chris Matthews runs an at times openly derisive and brazenly sexist news operation that has led at least some staffers to describe themselves as victims of “battered wives syndrome,” according to three of his show’s guests and two former producers who spoke exclusively to The Daily Caller.
Two former NBC producers independently alleged Matthews would rate the looks of his female guests on a scale and said Matthews was so abusive that staff joked about being battered women. The interviews in total paint Matthews as a tyrant liable to fly off the handle at the slightest mistake, who was eager to objectify women and made inappropriate sexual comments appear to be a matter of course for someone in his position.
In addition to the troubling behavior toward women, all five of the sources who spoke to TheDC about the workplace environment at “Hardball” described Matthews as verbally abusive. They claimed that Matthews’ outbursts went beyond normal or justifiable frustration, and former staffers apparently felt like they had to “walk on eggshells” around their “abusive” boss.
The two former producers independently referred to incidents involved screaming at staffers, throwing objects around, and generally demeaning guests and the people who worked for him.
Two questions at this point:
1) Why is MSNBC virtually remaining silent? Beyond the struggling network’s response to the DC back in mid-December that they had “paid money to a female staffer” over sexual harassment allegations against Chris Matthews that surfaced in 1999, they aren’t commenting. And the network declined to give their side of the story to the DC on the latest round of allegations.
2) It’s not exactly “breaking news” that Matthews treats women very differently than he’s treats men. So why has MSNBC not taken any meaningful action against him? Remember that time in 2009 that he called Sarah Palin John McCain’s “mail order bride“?
The DC notes other instances of Matthews’ objectifying female guests and public figures:
Matthews has also creepily told then-CNBC reporter Erin Burnett to get closer to the camera and asserted that vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin is “electric” but could be “hotter.” Just last year, he was caught on a hot mic admiring Melania Trump’s “runway walk,” and in 2017 he noted that acting Attorney General Sally Yates is “attractive, obviously.”
Recall that David Shuster was “suspended indefinitely” … for 6 years – over an over the top remark he made about Chelsea Clinton “being pimped out” by Hillary Clinton during her 2008 presidential campaign during the primaries (bolded emphasis added):
In a statement, MSNBC spokesman Jeremy Gaines called Shuster’s language “irresponsible. . . . NBC News takes these matters seriously and offers our sincere regrets to the Clintons for the remarks.” As for the scheduled debate between Clinton and Barack Obama, Gaines said network executives were talking to the Clinton camp “and we are hopeful that the event will take place as planned.”
After Shuster made the remark on “Tucker,” Clinton spokesman Philippe Reines contacted him and said the reference was offensive. Shuster e-mailed back that he was referring to the fact that Chelsea Clinton is making calls to convention superdelegates but refusing to talk to the press. After Shuster continued to defend himself, Phil Griffin, MSNBC’s top executive, called Reines yesterday to apologize.
Wolfson noted that MSNBC’s Chris Matthews expressed regret last month for suggesting that Hillary Clinton’s political success can be traced to sympathy stemming from her husband’s affair with Monica Lewinsky. “At some point you have to question whether there is a pattern at this particular network,” Wolfson said.
Gee, ya think?
Unfortunately, The Bigs at MSNBC treat Matthews like he should be considered a candidate for sainthood. In 2012. MSNBC president Lane Griffin described Matthews as “a statesman” (bolded emphasis added):
“He is sort of the model figure for who we are,” Griffin said. “He doesn’t stick out loving politics and being passionate about politics. It comes across in everything we do … And that’s Chris.”
If that’s the case, well then Chris Matthews isn’t MSNBC’s only “Me Too” problem.
As they say … stay tuned.