MSNBC Features Ex-Obama Aide Bashing 'Crazy,' 'Loopy' Bachmann, Defends Newsweek Cover

MSNBC contributor Joy-Ann Reid on Tuesday defended a controversial Michele Bachmann Newsweek cover, justifying that the Republican presidential candidate deserved it because she occasionally has the "crazy-eyes look."

Martin Bashir Guest host Jonathan Capehart didn't identify that Reid, the managing editor of TheGrio.com, is also a former press aide to Barack Obama's 2008 presidential campaign.

Reid absolved the controversial cover: "We have, sort of, the loopy things she's said. So, I think, in a way, it captures the persona that Michele Bachmann has kind of embodied, sort of the wild Tea Party lady."

Reid seemed to go back and forth on the appropriateness of the cover photo. She admitted, "But, as a photo, as a woman, I would have hated that photo. I mean, it was not a great, flattering photo."

 However, when Capehart pushed on whether it was sexist, the journalist doubled down: "I actually think not. I think that it talked about the sort of image of her as being a bit loopy.

A transcript of the August 09 segment, which aired at 3:30, follows:


JONATHAN CAPEHART: Joy-Ann, of course, the Bachmann portrait on the cover of Newsweek is continuing to generate controversy. I have written about it myself. Editor- Newsweek editor Tina Brown defended the photos, saying, you know, "Michele Bachmann's intensity is galvanizing voters in Iowa right now and Newsweek's cover captures that." Is it intensity, do you think?

JOY-ANN REID (Grio.com): That was not intensity. That was crazy eyes. Like that photo just made her kind of  look kind of crazy. But, I mean, it would be inappropriate if Michele Bachmann actually didn't occasionally make that craz-eyes look. I mean, she has done it. We had the whole looking in the wrong camera thing when she did her State of the Union rebuttal. We have, sort of, the loopy things she's said. So, I think, in a way, it captures the persona that Michele Bachmann has kind of embodied, sort of the wild Tea Party lady. But, as a photo, as a woman, I would have hated that photo. I mean, it was not a great, flattering photo. But, I mean, at the end of the day, I think they were trying to do something about who she is, not how she looks.

CAPEHART: Real fast. Yes or no: sexist or not?

REID: I actually think not. I think that it talked about the sort of image of her as being a bit loopy.
 

Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock is the senior news analyst for the Media Research Center and a contributing editor for NewsBusters.org