Fineman Joins Uygur in Trashing Tea Party, O’Donnell ‘Makes Sharron Angle Look Like Doris Kearns Goodwin’

 Appearing as a guest on Tuesday’s Countdown show on MSNBC, the Huffington Post’s Howard Fineman – formerly of Newsweek – joined substitute host Cenk Uygur in mocking Delaware Republican Senate nominee and the Tea Party as Uygur discussed O’Donnell’s recent comments about the words "separation of church and state" not being in the Consititution. After Uygur asked if the views of the Delaware Republican "speak poorly of the people who elected her, namely the Tea Party voters," Fineman agreed with Uygur’s negative view of the Tea Party and went on to trash Nevada Republican Senate nominee Sharron Angle as he contended that O’Donnell "makes Sharron Angle look like Doris Kearns Goodwin." Fineman:

Yeah, it probably doesn’t help the Tea Party at all. I mean, I suppose you could argue that having Christine O’Donnell around and speaking the way she did today makes Sharron Angle look like Doris Kearns Goodwin or something. But it, you know, that’s the only way she might be useful as a point of contrast. And what’s really killing here, what’s damning here is that the Tea Party is run in the name of rights and freedom. And all of those rights and freedoms are enshrined in the very amendments that she seems totally ignorant of.

Fineman also made no mention of the legitimate debate over the meaning of the Fourteenth Amendment and whether the children of illegal immigrants born in America should be considered natural-born American citizens as he mocked conservatives over the Fourteenth Amendment: "And, you know, they’re some of the amendments that they’re also questioning right now because the Fourteenth Amendment basically says that everyone here who’s born here, naturalized here, is a citizen of the United States, and their rights cannot be abridged by any of the states. And yet, the sort of local orientation of the Tea Party, you heard Christine O’Donnell talk about local option. what the local people want to do. You know, that’s something that is protected by the Fourteenth Amendment."

He soon added: "That’s what the Civil War was, that’s sort of what the Civil War was about."

When Uygur wondered which religion would the Tea Party movement want to make into the state religion of America, Fineman took a shot at Kentucky Republican Senate nominee Rand Paul as he cracked: "I think there’s an answer to this question, Cenk. It’s the Aqua Buddha religion of Rand Paul when he was in college. I think we’re all going to have to, we’re all going to have to be worshiping Aqua Buddha after the Tea Party takes charge."

Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of the Tuesday, October 19, Countdown show on MSNBC:

CENK UYGUR: Now, let’s turn to MSNBC political analyst Howard Fineman, senior political editor for Huffington Post as well. Good evening, Howard.

HOWARD FINEMAN, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Hi, Cenk.

UYGUR: All right, look, even if O’Donnell has already been written off politically, Howard, do her views speak poorly of the people who elected her, namely the Tea Party voters?

FINEMAN: Yeah, it probably doesn’t help the Tea Party at all. I mean, I suppose you could argue that having Christine O’Donnell around and speaking the way she did today makes Sharron Angle look like Doris Kearns Goodwin or something. But it, you know, that’s the only way she might be useful as a point of contrast. And what’s really killing here, what’s damning here is that the Tea Party is run in the name of rights and freedom. And all of those rights and freedoms are enshrined in the very amendments that she seems totally ignorant of. So that’s really the crushing contrast here.

UYGUR: Well, you know, they always seem to say that they care so much about the Constitution. But other than the Second Amendment and this bizarre theory on the Tenth Amendment, I never really honestly saw them give a damn. I mean, when Bush was running over the Fourth Amendment, when we still have warrantless wiretaps, I’ve never seen them protest that. Have they, have you seen them protest anything outside of those two or care about anything outside of those two amendments?

FINEMAN: No, not really, except that the whole sort of the mood music, the theme music, if you will, of the Tea Party is "don’t tread on me" and "don’t trample on my rights." And that’s a big part of what the Bill of Rights is all about, and they were enshrined and made applicable to all the states and to all citizens by the post-Civil War amendments. And, you know, they’re some of the amendments that they’re also questioning right now because the Fourteenth Amendment basically says that everyone here who’s born here, naturalized here, is a citizen of the United States, and their rights cannot be abridged by any of the states. And yet, the sort of local orientation of the Tea Party, you heard Christine O’Donnell talk about local option. what the local people want to do. You know, that’s something that is protected by the Fourteenth Amendment.

UYGUR: Yeah, I love that argument. I love the Constitution and I’d like to repeal the Fourteenth Amendment.

FINEMAN: Yes.

UYGUR: It doesn’t make much sense to me. But, Howard-

FINEMAN: That’s what the Civil War was, that’s sort of what the Civil War was about.

UYGUR: Yeah, I think we had a war over that. That’s right. So, now, real quick, though, let’s pick a religion because if we’re going to establish a religion, and there’s no separation of church and state, we got to pick one, right? Is it going to be Episcopalian? Southern Baptist? Mormon maybe, Harry Reid, Mitt Romney?

FINEMAN: I think there’s an answer to this question, Cenk. It’s the Aqua Buddha religion of Rand Paul when he was in college. I think we’re all going to have to-

UYGUR: It’s not a bad answer. I hadn’t thought of that.

FINEMAN: We’re all going to have to be worshiping Aqua Buddha after the Tea Party takes charge.

UYGUR: Right, I presume they’re not going with Islam. That’s probably out, but-

FINEMAN: Probably out. But Aqua Buddha, keep your eye on that one.

UYGUR: Okay, I will.

FINEMAN: Okay.

UYGUR: All right, Howard Fineman, senior editor for the Huffington Post, thanks for joining us.

FINEMAN: Thank you.