Chris Matthews: There’s ‘A Good Argument’ To Ban Tony Perkins From Hardball
IsÂ Chris MatthewsÂ “evolving” on his position of allowing Tony Perkins a platform on Hardball? Matthews, theÂ longtime MSNBC stalwart and “Hardball” host was again approached by members of Faithful America, a group of progressive Christians who support the LGBT community, about his insistence to keep the door open to Tony Perkins, the head of the certified anti-gay hate group Family Research Council (FRC),Â but this time Matthews admitted a change of heart.Â The 66-year old journalist confessed he has been talking with his producers about hosting Perkins, but is opposed to “censoring opinion.” Faith In America made the case that Perkins having an MSNBC platform gave his anti-gay views credibility. Matthews responded, “I think thatâ€™s an argument â€” thatâ€™s a good argument.”
Here’s the video and transcript via Faith in Public Life:
MATTHEWS:Â Why donâ€™t you think I should have him on my show?
Q: You said that you wouldnâ€™t have Franklin Graham on your show earlier this year because he tells hateful lies and I was wondering if you thought that was a different standard.
MATTHEWS: Well you got to make your case, you know.Â I talked about this with my producers last night and weâ€™re trying to decide how to deal with it.Â My view is I donâ€™t like censoring opinion and Tony Perkins has been on this show and he hasnâ€™t said something like that on my show, he doesnâ€™t talk like that on Hardball.*
Q: Do you think it gives himÂ credibilityÂ when heâ€™s on Hardball though, for what he says off Hardball?
MATTHEWS:Â You know I think thatâ€™s an argument â€” thatâ€™s a good argument. Iâ€™m thinking about it.Â Youâ€™re doing the right thing, youâ€™re doing the right thing keep it up. You know where I stand on the issues that I care about, you know. And Iâ€™m probably with you on these issues but I got to think it through.
Nick Sementelli at Faith in Public LifeÂ adds:
In what will likely come as a disappointment to the right-wing activists who have been celebrating Matthewsâ€™s comments as an endorsement of their â€œrightâ€ to spread lies on TV, Mathews clearly indicates that heâ€™s taking these concerns seriously, doesnâ€™t have a good answer, and has already begun conversations with his producers about it.
Faithful America, GLAAD and the other organizations and individuals who are working to educate the media about the problems with hosting spokespeople who tell hateful lies should take this as a sign that theyâ€™re making real progress and should keep up their efforts.
*As before, Matthews seems to have forgotten about his November 2010 show in which Perkins specifically cited debunked research to claim that gay men are more likely to molest children.
As a reminder, the last time Faithful America approached Matthews, we wrote:
Perkins runs a certified hate group. If MSNBC were doing a segment on, say, race relations in America, would they find it acceptable to host a member of the KKK as â€œbalanceâ€? Of course not. There is no difference. A hate group is a hate group, and the SPLC does not award that distinction lightly. They also study groups, sometimes for years, and document the actions that meet their definition of â€œhate group.â€ Generally, it centers on disseminating false information about a group of people who were â€œborn that way.â€
(Speaking of the KKK, Perkins actually has ties to the KKK, having reportedly given them over $80,000 for their mailing list. That says so much about who heâ€™s trying to appeal to.)
Second, what exactly makes Perkins an expert on homosexuality? Just because heâ€™s in the business to stamp out our rights does not make him an expert.
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Dominion Wins ‘Blockbuster Victories’ Against Fox News – Last Legal Issue Will Be Decided by a Jury: Report
Dominion Voting Systems won what are being called “blockbuster victories” Friday afternoon when a judge ruled the company suing Fox News for $1.6 billion in a major defamation lawsuit had met its burden of proof that Rupert Murdoch‘s far-right wing cable channel had repeatedly made false statements.
The final, and likely greatest legal issue Dominion will have to prove will be actual malice. That issue will be decided in a jury trial, Delaware Superior Court Judge Eric M. Davis ruled Friday, according to Law & Crime.
Unlike previous cases, Fox News will reportedly not be able to argue the on-air statements its personalities made were opinion.
CNN legal analyst and Brookings senior fellow Norm Eisen calls Friday’s decision a “huge win for Dominion on their summary judgment motion against Fox News.”
READ MORE: Capitol Police Issue Warning Over Possible Trump Protests ‘Across the Country’
“Dominion won partial summary judgement that what Fox said about them was false! Now they just have to prove actual malice and damages,” Eisen says. “Meanwhile Fox’s motion was totally denied.”
Former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance, an MSNBC contributor adds: “Dominion’s evidence Fox made false statements with reckless disregard is as strong as any I’ve seen.”
The judge was very clear in his ruling.
“While the Court must view the record in the light most favorable to Fox, the record does not show a genuine issue of material fact as to falsity,” Judge Davis wrote. “Through its extensive proof, Dominion has met its burden of showing there is no genuine issue of material fact as to falsity. Fox therefore had the burden to show an issue of material fact existed in turn. Fox failed to meet its burden.”
READ MORE: ‘Propaganda Network’: Media Reporter Says Dominion Filing Exposes Fox News as ‘Void of the Most Basic Journalistic Ethics’
Attorney and MSNBC host and legal analyst Katie Phang points to this key passage in Judge Davis’ ruling.
Dominion has won the argument on the issue of falsity, meaning that as the Court funds below, “it is CRYSTAL clear that none of the Statements relating to Dominion about the 2020 election are true.” pic.twitter.com/7lKEspN0WI
— Katie S. Phang (@KatiePhang) March 31, 2023
Court watchers and news junkies are familiar at this point with the massive legal filings Dominion has made in which it exposed how Fox News knowingly made false statements regarding the 2020 presidential election. Those filings, each hundreds of pages, also detail internal Fox News communications and bombshell conversations between the company’s top personalities, executives, and even Chairman Rupert Murdoch.
Image of Rupert Murdoch via Shutterstock
RIGHT WING EXTREMISM
Capitol Police Issue Warning Over Possible Trump Protests ‘Across the Country’
The U.S. Capitol Police and the Senate Sergeant at Arms on Friday jointly issued a statement warning they “anticipate” Trump protests across the country. The statement is not time-specific, and it states it has no information on “credible threats,” but some Democratic offices are allowing staffers to work from home Friday and Tuesday.
“The Sergeant at Arms and United States Capitol Police (USCP) anticipate demonstration activity across the country related to the indictment of former President Trump. While law enforcement is not tracking any specific, credible threats against the Capitol or state offices, there is potential for demonstration activity. USCP is working with law enforcement partners, so you may observe a greater law enforcement presence on Capitol Hill,” the statement reads.
“The SAA and USCP are monitoring the potential nationwide impacts to Senate state offices,” it adds.
The House Sergeant at Arms was conspicuously absent from the statement. Speaker Kevin McCarthy has control over that office.
READ MORE: Trump Trial Could Go Well Into the 2024 Election – Or Possibly Even Past It: Former Prosecutor
Additionally, Axios is reporting, “several House Democrats are allowing staffers to work from home as a safety precaution,” noting that “the memory of Trump supporters ransacking the Capitol on Jan. 6 is still fresh on the mind.”
U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI) is allowing staff to work from home for safety reasons. She told Axios, “I don’t ever want to see a Jan. 6 again.”
“I’ve been in the Trump hate tunnel, Donald Trump has gone after me, and quite frankly I don’t have security. I don’t have entourages.”
She’s not the only Democrat to raise concerns.
“Much of the language from the former President and his devotees is similar to what inspired Jan. 6th,” U.S. Rep. Dean Phillips said. “I’m concerned about safety for my colleagues and my staff.”
READ MORE: ‘Lighting the Match’: Marjorie Taylor Greene Blasted for Off the Rails Rant Defending Trump
Meanwhile, House Republicans are issuing full-throated support for Trump and calling for protests.
U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), who was called out by name in a six-page letter Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg sent to Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan Friday morning, announced she will be in New York on Tuesday to support Trump when he is arraigned. She has posted several tweets since Trump was indicted.
Speaker Kevin McCarthy issued a statement Thursday seemingly designed to gin up rage and action in the MAGA base.
“Alvin Bragg has irreparably damaged our country in an attempt to interfere in our Presidential election. As he routinely frees violent criminals to terrorize the public, he weaponized our sacred system of justice against President Donald Trump. The American people will not tolerate this injustice, and the House of Representatives will hold Alvin Bragg and his unprecedented abuse of power to account.”
Image by Elvert Barnes via Flickr and a CC license
Trump Trial Could Go Well Into the 2024 Election – Or Possibly Even Past It: Former Prosecutor
Donald Trump, and all of America, could spend the next 18 months – or longer – engrossed in Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s trial of the ex-president, and that could bring the trial close to Election Day.
That’s according to a former prosecutor in the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office, Charles Coleman, who is now a civil rights attorney and MSNBC legal analyst.
Asked by MSNBC’s Chris Jansing, “How long typically might a case like this take?” Coleman offered a two-tiered answer.
“A case like this is usually going to take a year or a year and a half,” Coleman said.
That could be through September of 2024.
READ MORE: ‘Lighting the Match’: Marjorie Taylor Greene Blasted for Off the Rails Rant Defending Trump
“Wow,” a surprised Jansing replied. “So it’s going right up into the campaign.”
“Absolutely,” agreed Coleman. “But it’s important to understand I said a case ‘like this.’ This particular case, I expect may take longer because I am anticipating a number of different legal maneuvers by Donald Trump’s defense team.”
That theoretically means into October of 2024, or longer.
“I do see motions to dismiss at a number of different terms, more likely than not to the point that the judge probably will ultimately end up admonishing them and telling them stop filing motions to dismiss. I think that that’s going to happen,” Coleman explained.
“I’ve said before, and I’ll say again, I do believe that we are going to see an attempt to try to change the venue, in this case outside of somewhere in the five boroughs. All of that is going to extend the time deeper and deeper into election season.”
READ MORE: Manhattan DA Unleashes on Jim Jordan With Stern Warning: You May Not ‘Interfere’ With Trump Prosecution
Reuters agrees, reporting Friday morning, “any potential trial is still at minimum more than a year away, legal experts said, raising the possibility that the former U.S. president could face a jury in a Manhattan courtroom during or even after the 2024 presidential campaign, as he seeks a return to the White House.”
And because “Trump’s case is far from typical,” Reuters notes, his trial could extend “past Election Day in November 2024.”
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