On Imus, Matthews again claimed men "are afraid" to criticize Sen. Clinton

››› ››› RYAN CHIACHIERE

On the March 28 edition of MSNBC's Imus in the Morning, MSNBC's Hardball host Chris Matthews asserted, "You only hear criticism of [Sen.] Hillary [Rodham Clinton (D-NY)] from smart, college-educated women. They're the ones that always have a problem with her." Matthews also stated that men "are afraid to talk like that." As Media Matters for America noted after Matthews made a similar claim on the March 26 edition of Hardball, Matthews has disproved this notion himself by making numerous statements about Clinton that could be construed as sexist.

Additionally, Matthews baselessly suggested that Clinton has agreed to tolerate former President Bill Clinton's "lifestyle" as long as he raises money for her campaign. "[I]s she enabling him or what?" Matthews asked. "What's going on? [Billionaire businessman] Ron Burkle, his playmate out there in L.A., Bill's playmate, is the one raising money for her campaign. Is this some deal? Where she puts up with him and his lifestyle so that he raises her money?" Host Don Imus agreed with this characterization, saying, "of course." Matthews went on to refer to the purported terms of the Clintons' relationship as a "sitcom": "We're all supposed to notice this sitcom but not mention it. We're supposed to notice. He always wants us to know he's got AstroTurf in the back of his car. He always wants us to know that stuff, that he's the stud. But we're not supposed to talk about it. He wants us to know it, and clam up, and live with it. That's his attitude towards this."

Matthews' fascination with what he has referred to as Bill Clinton's "lifestyle," "social life," "personal behavior," "current behavior," and "personal life" appears to stem from a May 23, 2006, New York Times article on the Clintons' marriage. For instance, on the February 27 edition of Hardball, Matthews referred to President Clinton as "Holly Golightly." Golightly is the main character in Truman Capote's 1958 novel Breakfast at Tiffany's, as well as the 1961 film of the same name. As Media Matters noted, The New York Times has described Golightly as a "blithely materialistic semiprostitute" and an "Upper East Side call girl."

During his Imus appearance, Matthews also repeated a separate claim he made on the March 26 edition of Hardball that "somewhere out in the Atlantic Ocean, I think there might be a giant, green, ugly, horny monster. A gigantic, gigantic monster of anti-Hillary, and anti-woman Hillary, anti-liberal woman Hillary, some real ferocious beast out there that says no matter what happens between now and Election Day, they're not going to let her win."

From the March 28 edition of MSNBC's Imus in the Morning:

IMUS: Can she be elected president?

MATTHEWS: You know, somewhere out in the Atlantic Ocean, I think there might be a giant, green, ugly, horny monster. A gigantic, gigantic monster of anti-Hillary, and anti-woman Hillary, anti-liberal woman Hillary, some real ferocious beast out there that says no matter what happens between now and Election Day, they're not going to let her win. There's men, some women, are just not going to let this woman, this woman win the presidency. I don't know whether that monster's out there. All men I meet are afraid to talk like that. You only hear criticism of Hillary from smart, college-educated women. They're the ones that always have a problem with her now.

But something tells me this country hasn't changed that dramatically. You know, a friend of mine pointed out the other day that we let African-Americans vote starting in the 1860s, at least under the law. It took us until the 1920s to let women vote. It's easier for men to accept a black guy as president than a woman president, I think, historically.

So why's everybody so happy about Hillary? Have we changed overnight? And that's what I can't get in my head. If we have changed overnight, that's a big development. If we haven't, we haven't talked about it yet. But there's something out there about having a woman president -- it's huge -- and nobody wants to talk about it. Just the idea of a woman president. And nobody's argued it. It's always -- it's all this politically correct, careful discussion. And yet it's there, and nobody's debating it.

IMUS: She still wouldn't be as bad as her husband or the current guy, so. If she does get elected.

MATTHEWS: Well, her husband, this thing is -- is she enabling him or what? What's going on? Ron Burkle, his playmate out there in L.A., Bill's playmate, is the one raising money for her campaign. Is this some deal? Where she puts up with him and his lifestyle so that he raises her money?

IMUS: Of course. Of course. Yeah. Well, of course.

MATTHEWS: I mean, it's so synchronized, the swimming, of his behavior and his world and her need to be president. And the way it works together is a little unsavory. Am I wrong?

IMUS: I hear you. No, you're right. No, you're a hundred percent right.

MATTHEWS: We're all supposed to notice this sitcom but not mention it. We're supposed to notice. He always wants us to know he's got AstroTurf in the back of his car. He always wants us to know that stuff, that he's the stud. But we're not supposed to talk about it. He wants us to know it, and clam up, and live with it. That's his attitude towards this.

Network/Outlet
MSNBC
Person
Chris Matthews
Show/Publication
Imus in the Morning
Stories/Interests
Hillary Clinton, 2008 Elections
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