Even liberals are mocking the decision by the Democratic National Committee to bar Fox News from holding the party’s presidential primary debates.
Former President Obama’s deputy chief of staff found the move just plain “silly,” as she gave her puzzled take on the announcement on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” Thursday.
DNC chairman Tom Perez pointed to “the inappropriate relationship between President Trump, his administration and Fox News,” in his announcement Wednesday that banned Fox News from hosting 2020 Democrat primary debates.
“Recent reporting in the New Yorker…has led me to conclude that the network is not in a position to host a fair and neutral debate for our candidates,” Perez said. “Therefore, Fox News will not serve as a media partner for the 2020 Democratic primary debates.”
Fox News Channel responded to the DNC decision with a request to reconsider, while the network’s Brett Baier tweeted that the choice was “really a shame.” The president also slammed the DNC and threatened to do the same with the “Fake News Networks.”
CNN’s Brian Stelter delivered a hypocritical spin on why the choice was right, slamming the network where “every night in prime time, Democrats are dehumanized.”
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) March 7, 2019
Alyssa Mastromonaco, Obama’s former deputy chief of staff, said she was “disappointed” by the move which she feels will serve as a distraction for Democrats.
“I don’t understand the strategy behind thinking that we’re going to expand our base into the Fox News audience when we really need to unite our own party,” said Mastromonaco. “Now it is just this unnecessary controversy…it’s silly”
Host Joe Scarborough told Mastromonaco he was “g;ad” to hear her remarks, adding that he once advocated for Republicans not having a debate hosted by MSNBC.
“That’s changed now. There are people that can I think run a very fair debate on MSNBC,” he said, noting that the same could be said for Fox News personalities like Chris Wallace and Brett Baier and Shepard Smith.
“Explain why that would be good for Democrats to reach out to those that aren’t automatically Democratic voters,” Scarborough asked his guest.
“It could be good,” she replied. “Chris Wallace was my first ever national television interview and he was very respectful and wonderful.”
But Mastromonaco still found the DNC decision odd and the ensuing attention not helping the messaging for Democrats moving into 2020.
“Of all of the things to come out of the gate with, is that the one?” she asked.
Fox News Senior Vice President and Managing Editor Bill Sammon remarked on the decision by noting the benefit of having Democratic candidates appear on the network as a way to reach certain voters.
“They’re the best debate team in the business and they offer candidates an important opportunity to make their case to the largest TV news audience in America, which includes many persuadable voters,” Sammon said in statement, according to The Hill.
Fox News Chief White House Correspondent, John Roberts, tweeted that the decision was “a little short-sighted” considering Wallace moderated a 2016 presidential debate.
— John Roberts (@johnrobertsFox) March 6, 2019