NBC 'Today' Panel Rips Chris Hayes: 'He Looks Like a Weenie' After Anti-Military Comments

During a panel on Tuesday's NBC Today, liberal pundits Star Jones, Donny Deutsch and Nancy Snyderman condemned left-wing MSNBC host Chris Hayes for suggesting fallen U.S. troops are not heroes. Deutsch was the strongest in denouncing Hayes: "I hope that he doesn't get more viewers as a result of this...this guy is like a – if you've seen him...he looks like a weenie." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]

Jones was clearly appalled by the offensive comments: "...the person that he [Hayes] was talking to was the officer whose job it was to call the families of fallen soldiers. Could you be more inappropriate on Memorial Day?" Snyderman voiced her disgust as well: "To criticize the young men and women who put themselves in harm's way to protect us and then cheapen it..."

Co-host Matt Lauer actually attempted to defend Hayes: "I'm not sure he was criticizing those young men and women. He was just saying that the word is overused." The panelists would have none of it. Snyderman declared: "But he's wrong....Because you know what? The four of us aren't fighting those wars. So these people are heroes to me." Jones added: "When it's a dead soldier, it's not overused."

After Lauer quoted Hayes's apology for the remarks, Snyderman responded: "Where was that eloquence on the front hand?" Jones reiterated: "You don't say this on Memorial Day."


Here is a full transcript of the May 29 exchange:

8:09AM ET

MATT LAUER: We're back at 8:09 with Today's Professionals Star Jones, Donny Deutsch and Dr. Nancy Snyderman are here to offer their takes on the most talked-about stories making news. Good morning, all. Nice to see you.

NANCY SNYDERMAN: Hey, Matt.

LAUER: It was Memorial Day yesterday, okay, and Chris Hayes, a host of a show on MSNBC, getting a lot of reaction to a comment he made where he says that he doesn't like the word hero used to describe all fallen soldiers. He said the word is appropriate when describing some heroic actions, but he says that it's too widely used. Here's his quote, "So, it seems to me that it is so rhetorically proximate to justifications for more war." In other words, he's saying if you describe all fallen soldiers as heroes, it's less likely that you criticize war. How do you feel about this?

STAR JONES: Donny, do you want to go?

DONNY DEUTSCH: I'm repulsed. I mean, you know I just – I hope that he doesn't get more viewers as a result of this. To say that, and by the way, this guy is like a – if you've seen him, he looks like a, he looks like a weenie. And, you know, to sit there where these guys are risking their lives. They are heroes, beginning, middle, end of story. I don't know what the other side of his argument is.

JONES: The other problem is the person that he was talking to was the officer whose job it was to call the families of fallen soldiers. Could you be more inappropriate on Memorial Day?

SNYDERMAN: Once we stopped the draft it become someone else's war. I think we've talked about that, you know, here before. To criticize the young men and women who put themselves in harm's way to protect us and then cheapen it, it – first of all he wasn't eloquent-

LAUER: I'm not sure he was criticizing those young men and women. He was just saying that the word is overused.

SNYDERMAN: But he's wrong. And if you get hurt-

JONES: When it's a dead soldier, it's not overused.

SNYDERMAN: Because you know what? The four of us aren't fighting those wars. So these people are heroes to me.

LAUER: Well, okay, now he has since apologized, saying as someone who's never fought a war he shouldn't have said it. Quote, "As many have rightly pointed out, it's very easy for me as a TV host to opine about people who fight our wars, having never dodged a bullet or guarded a post or walked a mile in their boots."

DEUTSCH: Well said, well said.

JONES: Or used good judgment. You don't use – you don't say this on Memorial Day.

SNYDERMAN: Where was that eloquence on the front hand?

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