Flashback: CNBC GOP Debate Moderator John Harwood Blamed 'Crazy' Republicans for U.S. Debt Downgrade

Before being tapped to be one of the moderators at CNBC's upcoming Republican presidential debate, John Harwood was ranting against the GOP for causing the summer debt crisis. Appearing on NBC's Today in July, Harwood warned: "...the House Republican caucus...would not accept what President Obama needed to make a deal...It's crazy politics, what they're doing..."

When the U.S. later lost its AAA credit rating in August, Harwood again appeared on Today to proclaim that the downgrade had provided President Obama with "a tangible consequence to point to for Republican brinksmanship on the debt and deficit reduction deal.”    

At the same time, Harwood has fawned over Obama in recent interviews. When the President famously swatted a fly in one such 2009 interview, Harwood later gushed about it on MSNBC: "He had this fly that was persistently buzzing around him....He swatted his hand and he said, 'I got the sucker.' He threw it onto the ground. It was a, you know, Dirty Harry 'make my day' moment."

As an economic reporter, Harwood has shown a disdain for business. In a 2010 interview with Obama, Harwood made this ominous comparison: "Should average Americans think about big Wall Street institutions the way that some have come to think about tobacco companies, that is, companies whose core activities are harmful to the country?"

During a 2010 appearance on MSNBC's The Ed Show, Harwood remarked about business leaders critical of Obama's policies: "Well look, part of the White House argument is that these businessmen are really upset because of what's going to happen with their personal income tax rates when the Bush tax cuts expire at the end of 2010....I find it a little beyond belief the whining that you hear from some of these people who ought to man up."

In 2005, while serving as political editor for The Wall Street Journal, Harwood freely admitted the existence of liberal media bias: "I believe it is true that a significant chunk of the press believes that Democrats are incompetent but good-hearted, and Republicans are very efficient but evil."

Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen
Kyle Drennen is a News Analyst for MRC