MSNBC Goes Full North Korea Media Over Biden State of the Union Speech

March 8th, 2024 2:07 AM

MSNBC’s immediate reaction to President Joe Biden’s shouty, aggressive, and grossly partisan State of the Union address was, even by MSNBC standards, disconnected from reality and more akin to something one might expect from North Korean state media. 

Here’s Lawrence O’Donnell kicking off the gushing with expressions of astonishment at Biden’s attack on the Supreme Court: 

LAWRENCE O’DONNELL: It was at that moment that I think we all remember- of the way he attacked, I guess is the word for it, the Supreme Court- TO THEIR FACES. Where the camera then goes to this shot of the six Supreme Court justices, three of whom he was very specifically attacking. That’s never been done before. To the extent that a president has a disagreement with the Supreme Court expressed in the State of the Union address, they always try to find the most polite possible language for doing that. This was not the night for that. So that was just astonishing. 

“Astonishing”, not as in astonishment at a brazen attack upon the institutions. I was told that these were attacks upon DEMOCRACY itself. Insurrection, even. But, of course, things are (D)ifferent when Biden does it. Bookmark that hot take for when the rabid left stalks the conservative Supreme Court justices at their homes ahead of their ruling on presidential immunity.

Then, there’s Nicolle Wallace, who also cheered the attack on the Supreme Court:

NICOLLE WALLACE: I- this was his “how ‘bout them apples” speech for me. I mean, this is what, the fourth? You know, we’ve watched this before. I think that grabbing the room by- he started with World War II. And the Civil War. And rooted the threat facing our country from “my predecessor” in those two, you know, epic battles and he quoted Ronald Reagan. It was like a punch in the face to every Republican in the room. And that's how it started. This was the first 90, you know, first 120 seconds. There were Republican- and he rooted the address in the Civil War, World War II, and then quoted Reagan and that was a punch in the nose. It’s why by the end, Lindsey Graham was slouched in his seat with his arm folded, chuckling like it was John McCain up there. I mean, the- the- the- the- the sort of, you know, waving of the white flag by the Re- I mean Mike Johnson's face, I think, told the whole story. And I think that they’re, I mean, they will be attacking him by, you know… I’m sure they are right now, or they will by 11:15 on Fox News but everybody knows that this was a great speech and everybody knows that if this is the message going into the next eight months, the polls will soon reflect that, and this will be a real fight. I think taking on his own age 3 times in the end shows not just Republicans but Democrats he’s not afraid of defending his stature, his status.

RACHEL MADDOW: (Biden) said, “In my career, I’ve been called too young and I’ve been called too old.

WALLACE: He makes three references about his age. And I think the abortion debate has already been won, and I agree, by taking on the Supreme Court, he’s ready to take it to the next level. I thought this was a really remarkable State of the Union. 

Remarkable, she says. Imagine the vitriolic reaction if former President Donald Trump attacked a 6-3 liberal Supreme Court during the State of the Union.

They were joined by Joy Reid, who suggested that Biden’s speech was…chemically enhanced. Inadvertent bipartisan consensus!

JOY REID:  I thought the speech was very high caffeine. I think Joe Biden woke up this morning, had a cup of coffee and had his Wheaties- he was definitely there to fight. This is somebody who, I was just talking about it in the 7 o’clock hour- about whether or not he is small-c constitutionally capable of essentially being nasty- being aggressive, being harsh. But he came in there tonight ready to fight for the presidency. To fight for the White House in a way that I think I did not expect. The speech was incredibly aggressive. He opened, as Nicolle said, with World War II, Hitler, appeasement, and then he went right for the people in front of him. He said, “my predecessor and some of you- some of you, have sought to bury the truth about January 6 and he accused a member sitting right in front of him of seeking to bury that, then he kept punching. 

All in all, MSNBC’s immediate reaction was sycophantic and reminiscent of state media. Upon further review, perhaps I should reconsider the comparison to North Korean state media, which might look at MSNBC’s performance and find it to be way over the top.