Donna Brazile
Credit: VOA News/Wikimedia Commons

Donna Brazile should know that if you need to write a 900-word essay to rationalize taking your new job, you’re probably not going to convince your critics. If she wants to pay the mortgage with Rupert Murdoch’s money, she can do so without insulting everyone’s intelligence by trying to make the assignment sound high-minded. She will be a commentator at Fox News for the 2020 presidential election cycle, and has every right to be excited about the challenge or opportunity or whatever you want to call it when a liberal agrees to play Alan Colmes to Sean Hannity on a network that is committed more every day to promoting white nationalism and Islamophobia.

Some of Brazile’s arguments are flat out laughable. She wants us to believe that she’s taking the position because:

…it concerns me, as it does the majority of good Americans, that our national debate has become hostile and disrespectful. We no longer simply agree to disagree. Too often we demonize the intentions of others. Our lines of communication are frayed, if not broken.

If Fox News does anything better and more consistently than demonizing the intentions of others, it’s breaking the lines of communication between their audience and a thing called basic reality.

In order for us to best decide as a people how to better protect and preserve our way of life, we need to first be able to hear what others are saying without the filter of bias and contempt. Not until we once again become practiced at treating those of differing views with civility and respect can we begin to join together to solve the myriad of problems our country must overcome.

A decent dictionary definition of Fox News would be “a filter of bias and contempt.” Their business model is to provide biased news to rage-o-holics with the precise lack of civility or respect they crave. Fox News exists to prevent people from joining together or overcoming problems.

She seems to understand that living in a bubble is no good, but somehow she casts herself and the rest of us as living in the bubble. She’s saying that she’ll learn a whole lot by getting outside of the bubble in her new job.

In a bubble, you don’t have to listen — or even think. When we refuse to hear one another, we wall ourselves off from the possibility of learning and, more importantly, finding common ground. Civility and humility are vital to our democratic enterprise. They are even more vital in healing the political divisions tearing us apart. To bridge this great divide, we need to bust out of our comfort zone. In coming to work as a commentator at Fox News, trust me, I’m stepping out of my comfort zone. My beliefs will be challenged, and I welcome it.

It’s obviously ludicrous to suggest that the people who don’t watch Fox News need to start so they can learn civility and find common ground. It’s even more ludicrous for Brazile to suggest that she will somehow bind up the nation’s wounds by taking a position alongside Tucker Carlson, Jeanine Pirro, and the other hate mongers on that network.

I’m almost flabbergasted that she tries to virtue signal by bragging about how often she’s dined with Karl Rove. I wonder if she really has no clue how unimpressed Democrats are to learn that she considers Mary Matalin to be her “home girl.”

I have always had good friends on the other side of the aisle. Former Republican National Committee chairman Ed Gillespie and Michael Steele are men who I have known for decades. Former Bush-Cheney strategist and home girl Mary Matalin helped me survive so many challenges that we now refer to each other as “Towanda,” a term of endearment from the classic film “Fried Green Tomatoes.”

Former Virginia Republican Rep. Barbara Comstock was the first person to donate clothes for my drive to help Hurricane Katrina victims. And I’ve happily shared many meals and civic engagements with Dana Perino and Karl Rove.

The piece actually reads more like a plea to be accepted by the right rather than an explanation to the left.

I will also freely admit the weaknesses in liberal arguments and the strength in conservative positions. And I welcome the opportunity to challenge many of the false assumptions about progressives, especially those newly elected to Congress.

To leave the world a better place, you need to help make the world a better place. Just as it takes many ingredients to make a good gumbo, it will require listening to many voices before we are able to move forward as one people. And that’s exactly why I am so excited to join the honest and passionate debate at Fox News about our future. I invite you to join me.

Here’s what I am absolutely certain about. Donna Brazile appearing on Fox News to comment on presidential politics between now and Election Day in 2020 is not going to leave the world a better place. That’s not why she took the job.

Reading stuff like this makes me want to self-administer a lobotomy.

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Martin Longman is the web editor for the Washington Monthly. See all his writing at