MSNBC News Live substitute host Donny Deutsch frothed about "right-wing racism" on Thursday and trashed Rush Limbaugh as a both a "moron" and a "putz" and Glenn Beck as a "super moron." The former CNBC anchor talked with liberal journalist Joan Walsh about her Salon.com column and quoted her asserting that "Limbaugh and Beck continue to ratchet up their alarming and increasingly racist hatred for the President."
Deutsch began the segment by solemnly wondering, "Is right-wing racism on the rise?" And yet, he later responded to Walsh's complaints about Limbaugh by deriding, "Well, as long as he’s throwing slurs, I’m going to throw a Jewish slur and call Mr. Limbaugh a putz." After playing a clip of the conservative radio star labeling Barack Obama "race-obsessed," Deutsch, whose program on CNBC has was cancelled in 2008, angrily denounced, "Joan, you know, obviously we have got morons like Limbaugh calling Obama an angry black man. Super morons like Glenn Beck saying that he's a racist and he hates white people."
Completely dropping any pretense of objectivity, Deutsch opined on how such comments were a positive thing: "I think they are hurting their party and I think we are in a nation tired of hate....If I'm President Obama, the more they do this, the better for the Democrats, the better for the good guys." He hopefully queried Walsh, "Am I just looking for a silver lining here?" (Of course, as the MRC’s Tim Graham noted, since Deutsch gave $25,000 to John Edwards in 2008, perhaps his definition of "the good guys" is different than others.)
Before giving advice as to how the Republicans could win in the future, Deutsch pontificated, "Joan, you know what? The Republicans are really stupid." He then insisted that the party need to denounce conservatives such as Limbaugh and Beck. Speculating as to what this hypothetical GOP leader would say, he added, "'You know what? This has got to stop. I'm a new kind of Republican.' And that's what people are waiting for. If I was running these guys' campaigns, that's where I would go right now."
A transcript of the July 30 segment, which aired at 3:32pm, follows:
DONNY DEUTSCH: Now, the bigger picture. Is right-wing racism on the rise? Here's what Joan Walsh, Salon.com., wrote, quote, "Limbaugh and Beck continue to ratchet up their alarming and increasingly racist hatred for the President." She goes on to say, "And look for this kind of crazy to escalate with the party base." Rush Limbaugh responded on his radio show just a short time ago.
RUSH LIMBAUGH: President Obama is so race-obsessed he writes a book about the father he never really knew, subtitled "A Story of Race and Inheritance." He marries a woman who is lucky enough to get into Princeton, but writes a book about how she is always an outsider in white culture. Then the two of them said in Reverend Wright hate temple of black liberation theology for 20 years and I am the one with the race problem?
DEUTSCH: Joan Walsh joins us from San Francisco. Joan, you know, obviously we have got morons like Limbaugh calling Obama an angry black man. Super morons like Glenn Beck saying that he’s a racist and he hates white people. I’m going to look at the good news in this. Because, to dignify them even further is embarrassing. I think they are hurting their party and I think we are in a nation tired of hate. Yes, there's always going to be a fringe, but if I'm a Democrat, If I’m President Obama, the more they do this, the better for the Democrats, the better for the good guys. Am I just looking for a silver lining here?
JOAN WALSH: No, I see the same silver lining, Donny. I think you are right. You, and Tamron and I all know that racial progress in the country really is a two-step forward, occasionally one-step back process. And we elected a black president. It was an awesome time for all of us. Many Republicans, even if they didn’t vote for him, were very proud and now, especially as the rubber hits the road and is endorsing policies that some people disagree with, it is not racist to disagree with him, but some forces opposed who have always been opposed to him are using race to vilify him. I believe-
TAMRON HALL: But, Joan, if it’s hurting the party, let me ask you, why then are we not are we hearing from, maybe, those who are more moderate within the Republican Party or those who are elected in office speaking out against this, admonishing Rush Limbaugh and others like Glenn Beck who are saying these things? If they want the mic, it is there.
WALSH: Yeah. And, you know, Tamron, we have talked about that before. I even wrote about that in my blog. And this whole- the whole phenomenon of the birthers, which I believe is somewhat related. There's a racial tinge there, too. I'm afraid that too many Republican leaders are ambivalent about it and they don't believe these things themselves, but they don't want to alienate their base, the fringe of their base, let's say, by coming out and saying stop it. It took Michael Steele who happens to be African-American until yesterday to say that the birthers are crazy and the President is a citizen. So, they are trying to have it both ways. Look, we all know this is a party lost in the wilderness. They don't know in the answer is to play to their base, bring out a Sarah Palin, throw the base red meat around race and division, or what the answer might be to move a little bit towards is center and play for the independents. We all know that independents are the a really important constituency. Obama won them overwhelmingly. But the party doesn’t seem to have leaders right now who know- who have any faith in moving towards those independents and away from this really kind of cro-Magnon, divisive, really retro garbage.
DEUTSCH: Joan, know what, the Republicans are really stupid. Because if any one of them was smart, Mitt Romney, name them, this was a moment in time, because a lot of the independents who voted for Obama are swinging in the other direction. The most recent polls show us that somebody could grab the mantle right now in the Republican Party. Because, you don't need the fringe base to get elected and say, "You know what? This has got to stop. I'm a new kind of Republican." And that's what people are waiting for. If I was running these guys’ campaigns, that's where I would go right now.
WALSH: I agree with you. I don't know who it is. I don’t know if it is Romney or Huckabee, I don't see it being Sarah palin, but who knows? Stranger things, maybe, have happened. But, it really would be a wonderful time for a kind of race speech, a kind of resetting of what the party stands for. And, and somebody big with big ambitions, to distinguish himself or herself from this rabble and from people like Limbaugh. But, you know, Donny, what we see is people occasionally will even- Michael Steele again- will stand up to Limbaugh and he smacks them down and then they run cowering into the corner, crying like little puppies. And, you know, they are afraid of him. I mean, he called me, he went on to call me the magic honkie today. I’m proud of that. The President is the magic negro. I’m the magic honkie.
DEUTSCH: Well, as long as he’s throwing slurs. I’m going to throw a Jewish slur and call Mr. Limbaugh a putz. I don’t think anyone’s ever called him that.
WALSH: I think he’s a putz. I’m with you.
DEUTSCH: I don’t think I’ve said putz on MSNBC. He’s a putz. He’s a putz.
HALL: I’ll have to look it up because I don’t know what it means. But, I know it’s not good.