Viewers want Chris Matthews to be fired after the MSNBC anchor likened Bernie Sanders, who is Jewish, to Nazis.
The liberal anchor had perhaps the most unhinged reaction in cable news to Sanders’ crushing Saturday victory in the Nevada caucuses, comparing the Vermont senator’s capture of the Democratic Party to Adolf Hitler’s takeover of France, the Washington Examiner reported. Matthews was slammed over the comments, which came as part of a wider liberal media pile-on of the insurgent democratic-socialist.
Chris Matthews sparks backlash
Sanders solidified his frontrunner credentials Saturday, capturing almost 50% of the vote in a crushing rebuke of the Democratic Party establishment, according to The New York Times. His performance left centrists at MSNBC and elsewhere sputtering.
For his part, Matthews, who has made no secret of his thoughts on Sanders and socialism, seemed to speak for the fearful id of the liberal ruling class when he went reaching for the most exaggerated comparison conceivable.
“I was reading last night, Brian — I know that you’re a history guy, too — I’m reading last night about the fall of France in the summer of 1940,” Matthews said, according to The Hill. “And the general, Reynaud, calls up Churchill and says, ‘It’s over.’ And Churchill says, ‘How can it be? You’ve got the greatest army in Europe. How can it be over?’ He said, ‘It’s over.'”
MSNBC’s Chris Matthews likens Sanders victory in Nevada to Nazi Germany overrunning France in 1940: “It’s too late to stop him … it’s over” pic.twitter.com/6GJetLoDkq
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) February 22, 2020
But while Sanders’ surge is certainly momentous, many did not appreciate Matthews’ analogy — especially considering that members of Sanders’ family were killed in the Holocaust, as the Times of Israel reported last September. Mike Casca, Sanders’ communications director, issued a rebuke of Matthews amid a cascade of criticism and calls for his resignation, and Matthews’ own colleague at MSNBC likened his mentality to that of “out-of-touch aristocrats in a dying aristocracy,” according to Fox News.
“[N]ever thought part of my job would be pleading with a national news network to stop likening the campaign of a [J]ewish presidential candidate whose family was wiped out by the [N]azis,” Casca tweeted. “[B]ut here we are.”
Establishment fears Sanders surge
The remarkable surge of Sanders has already earned comparisons to Trump’s takeover of the Republican Party in 2016, which took established “experts” by surprise in a groundswell of populist revolt. Not unlike Trump, Sanders is being attacked by the liberal media, and is even facing accusations of being a Russian asset. (Yes, really.)
Centrist Democrats have amplified reports that the Kremlin wants to help the Sanders campaign, which surfaced a day after reports that the Russians want to help Trump, to paint him as a suspect figure. But Sanders has also been criticized for past and present comments that are sympathetic to communism, including a measured defense of Fidel Castro over the weekend.
“We’re very opposed to the authoritarian nature of Cuba,” Sanders told 60 Minutes on Sunday night, according to Fox. “But you know, it’s unfair to simply say everything is bad. When Fidel Castro came into office, you know what he did? He had a massive literacy program. Is that a bad thing? Even though Fidel Castro did it?”
Democrats feel the Bern
Matthews has meanwhile criticized Sanders very candidly, comparing his campaign to Castro’s regime and sharing his fears that “there would have been executions in Central Park, and I might’ve been one of the ones getting executed” had the communists won the Cold War.
Like many centrist Dems, Matthews is concerned that Sanders is setting up the party for a wipe-out like that suffered by George McGovern to Richard Nixon in 1972, one of the worst electoral landslide defeats in American history. “That can happen again. So clearly, that’s what I see. It could happen again,” Matthews said.
It certainly seems like the Democratic Party going up in flames.