That ear-splitting sound you just heard is Tim Russert turning over in his grave.
Chuck Todd’s interview with reality-TV hack Omarosa Manigault-Newman on NBC’s Meet the Press this morning will be remembered as perhaps the single most embarrassing moment in the history of American Sunday-morning news programs. There is virtually nothing newsworthy or interesting about Manigault-Newman’s claims; it’s unclear what exactly the purpose was for bringing this disgraced former Trump aide on.
There was an air of sleaziness to the interview. It was nothing more than the depressing spectacle of a guest with no credibility being allowed to pretend she had plenty. The creepiness of the nearly 22-minute segment cannot be overstated; one cannot escape the sense that this time would have been far better spent on guests who actually have something valuable to contribute to the public conversation.
Yesterday, Trump branded Manigault-Newman a “lowlife.” By definition, anyone associated with this administration is, so Politifact should rate Trump’s statement “True.” Didn’t the producers of Meet the Press think about the credibility of their program before bringing Manigault-Newman on? There have to be things more important than ratings, no?
On CNN’s Reliable Sources, April Ryan of American Urban Radio Networks called out Manigault-Newman in a way Todd would not:
I’ve known Omarosa for years, and we are not friends anymore … [T]he bottom line is, I can tell you for a fact she was complicit [in Trump’s behavior], but she also did the bidding and she wanted to prove that she was in their camp, because she used to be a Democrat. And she went so far as to try to go after me. She told Sean Spicer to stop calling on me. She has done so much––she lied [about] me, telling people that I was taking money from Hillary Clinton, to hurt my career. Omarosa did these things. She may not even talk about it in her book, but I talk about it in mine, and she did these things to support her president and to support her friend that she said she was loyal to. The bottom line is that yes, she was complicit, but she was doing all this knowing that it was going to be a payoff in the end for her, and then once she got upset with him, or he got upset with her, or whatever happened, she decides to turn on him. She’s not a friend, she’s a liar, and I would say she’s evil.
Politifact should also rate Ryan’s statement “True.” What other word can be used to describe this level of narcissism and selfishness and vanity?
One wonders if anyone at NBC raised a moral objection to bringing Manigault-Newman on. News programs like Meet the Press should not be used as forums for credibility-free self-promoters to rehabilitate their image. Manigault-Newman once famously claimed that Trump’s critics would one day have to bow down to the bigoted billionaire. Shame on NBC for bowing down to Manigault-Newman today.