MSNBC's Roberts Trots Out Rep. Ellison to Dismiss Hearings on Inmate Radicalization

With Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) holding a hearing on the radicalization of Muslim inmates in U.S. prisons, MSNBC's Thomas Roberts this morning set out to discredit the premise of the proceedings by interviewing Minnesota Democrat and practicing Muslim Rep. Keith Ellison.

Ellison, Roberts reminded viewers of MSNBC's 11 a.m. Eastern hour of live news coverage, provided tearful testimony at a hearing in March on Islamic radicalization.

Roberts began his interview by practically holding Ellison forth as an expert when it comes to the data regarding prisoner radicalization (emphasis mine):


Today's hearing really keys in on prisons. Congressman King though noting that dozens of ex-convicts that have traveled on to Yemen and join al Qaeda fringe groups. From what you've seen though, how widespread is the problem and is it really warranted to be discussed today in these hearings?

Ellison responded that radicalization should be discussed but objected that the hearings were focusing unfairly on Muslims when there are "white supremist (sic) groups, other groups, gangs from various parts of the world that might be the subject of a hearing."

Roberts failed to challenge Ellison, moving on to query him on his thoughts about GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain and his views on potentially having Muslims in his Cabinet.

The MSNBC daytime anchor also failed to balance out Ellison by bringing on experts who have studied prison inmate radicalization nor any conservatives or Republicans who would rebut Ellison's complaint that Muslims were being unfairly singled out.

# # #

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is the Managing Editor for NewsBusters