"Hardball" host Chris Matthews lurched even further off the deep end on Wednesday’s "Imus in the Morning." After praising the “great job” Rudy Giuliani did in cleaning up New York City — which Matthews again suggested was done with just “a pinch” of "fascism" — the MSNBC star went on a rant declaring how he’s “sick of southern guys with ranches running this country.”
Losing control, Matthews dropped the F-bomb on national television: “I want a guy to run for President who doesn’t have a fucking — I’m sorry, a ranch.” As host Don Imus began to snicker, Matthews plowed ahead with his Democratic talking points: “Wouldn’t that be good, Don, a guy who wasn’t on the ranch during Katrina, he was on the street corner answering questions?”
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Radio listeners were spared Matthews’ cursing, but no such luck for those watching the MSNBC simulcast. After saying goodbye to Matthews about three minutes later, Imus and his crew mocked their MSNBC colleague. MSNBC's on-screen file photo of Matthews was altered to include a black censor bar over his mouth. Executive Producer Bernard McGuirk suggested Matthews was the sort who would “put on a diaper and drive 900 miles to abduct Dick Cheney or somebody,” and someone else offered that “he’s crazy.”
Imus was the diplomat: “But isn’t that what we like about him? I love his energy, his passion.”
Here’s the transcript of Matthews’ comments, which happened at about 7:45 ET.
“We love good mayors because we love our cities and Giuliani is the city guy, and I’m so sick of southern guys with ranches running this country. I want a guy to run for president who doesn’t have a fucking — I’m sorry, a ranch. Wouldn’t that be good, Don, a guy who wasn’t on the ranch during Katrina, he was on the street corner answering questions?”