NBC’s Chuck Todd Rushes to Defend Hillary Clinton: ‘It's Not A Bubble She Chose’

Once again, Chuck Todd, NBC News Political Director, Chief White House Correspondent and host of MSNBC’s The Daily Rundown, did his best to explain away a gaffe by a Democrat, this Hillary Clinton’s claim that they were "dead broke" after leaving the White House.

Appearing on NBC Nightly News on Tuesday, June 24, Todd proclaimed that "Bill Clinton tried to do what he does best today, explain away a thorny political problem. This time, making the case his wife is not out of touch." [See video below.] 

NBC anchor Brian Williams introduced the report hyping how "Bill Clinton jumped to his wife's defense today after comments Hillary has made about their post-White House wealth during her recent book tour. In an interview today with David Gregory, Bill Clinton pushed back on accusations from critics that his wife is somehow out of touch."

As he continued his report, Todd did his best to deflect controversy from the Clinton’s wealth issues:

Even before her husband came to her defense, she tried to explain the difference between her newfound wealth and that of more established rich politicians. Telling the British newspaper, The Guardian, "Because we pay ordinary income tax, unlike a lot of people who are truly well off, not to name names, and we've done it through the dint of hard work."

While the NBC reporter did mention where the majority of the Clinton’s wealth came from, he failed to include any Clinton critics in his report. The NBC reporter also ignored how the Clinton’s have sheltered much of their wealth in their foundation in order to avoid paying the hefty estate tax that they have supported in the past.

Todd concluded by lamenting Hillary Clinton’s so-called burden of being married to a former president:

This issue of being in touch with average Americans is even more complicated for Mrs. Clinton. Consider this, it's been 22 years since she's been able to walk alone outside without Secret Service protection. It's not a bubble she chose. But it only adds to her challenge with connecting with every day Americans.

See relevant transcript below.


NBC

NBC Nightly News

June 24, 2014

BRIAN WILLIAMS: Bill Clinton jumped to his wife's defense today after comments Hillary has made about their post-White House wealth during her recent book tour. In an interview today with David Gregory, Bill Clinton pushed back on accusations from critics that his wife is somehow out of touch. We get our report tonight from our Political Director and Chief White House Correspondent Chuck Todd.

CHUCK TODD: Bill Clinton tried to do what he does best today, explain away a thorny political problem. This time, making the case his wife is not out of touch.

BILL CLINTON: We go to our local grocery store on the weekend. We talk to people in our town, we know what's going on.

TODD: The trouble for Hillary Clinton began when she said this.

HILLARY CLINTON We came out of the White House not only dead broke, but in debt.

BILL: It is factually true that we were several million dollars in debt.

TODD: Today David Gregory asked the former president about the way Hillary Clinton has described their finances.

DAVID GREGORY: Can you understand as a political matter, that that can strike people as being out of touch?

BILL: Yeah, but she's not out of touch, and she advocated and worked as a senator for things that were good for ordinary people. And before that all her life, I remember she was working on trying to -- believing in paid leave for pregnant mothers in the 1970s.

TODD: Even before her husband came to her defense, she tried to explain the difference between her newfound wealth and that of more established rich politicians. Telling the British newspaper, The Guardian, "Because we pay ordinary income tax, unlike a lot of people who are truly well off, not to name names, and we've done it through the dint of hard work." Post presidency most of the Clintons' net worth estimated at over $100 million, has come from three sources. Books. She got $8 million for the first memoir, he got $15 million. The government, a Senate salary close to $170,000 and $200,000 as Secretary of State. And speeches. Industry sources say both command well over six figures per appearance. Of course for Hillary Clinton, this isn't about money, it's about perception.

AMY WALTER: When she gets caught in explaining away how much money she makes, this helps to feed into this perception that she's really just still part of Washington. Part of the establishment.

TODD: You know, Brian, this issue of being in touch with average Americans is even more complicated for Mrs. Clinton. Consider this, it's been 22 years since she's been able to walk alone outside without Secret Service protection. It's not a bubble she chose. But it only adds to her challenge with connecting with every day Americans.

WILLIAMS: Chuck Todd in our D.C. newsroom tonight. Chuck thanks.

Jeffrey Meyer
Jeffrey Meyer
Jeffrey Meyer is a News Analyst at the Media Research Center.