Appearing on MSNBC, Tuesday night, for election returns, anchor Andrea Mitchell angrily denounced Republican ads on Ebola as "scary" and "non-factual." Hardball host Chris Matthews lamented that ISIS terror attacks had dropped off as an election issue: "How did that cease to be an election issue?"
This prompted Mitchell to blast Republicans for their Ebola ads: "But it's not a substantive argument. It's a scare tactic...by the Republican opponents of Democratic incumbents who tried to focus on ISIS and Ebola in the scariest, most non-factual ways to take the, you know, the eye off the real, the real issues, which were the economy." [MP3 audio here.]
Earlier in the day, MSNBC's Joy Reid admitted, "I don't know what good news would be" for the midterms.
Later, Matthews blurted, "Can I sound a bit Marxist here?"
A transcript of the exchange can be found below:
MSNBC Live coverage
CHRIS MATTHEWS: ISIS exists. There's a part of the world right now that's growing and perhaps into a caliphate of people who are anti-western, anti-Israel, but anti-us. They grab our people and they behead them on television. How did that cease to be an election issue, because somehow, did we change the channel? Did Ebola, with two victims, seem more important to us? I mean, how did that happen?
RACHEL MADDOW: I think it did stay an election issue.
MATTHEWS: I don't think –
MADDOW: All these closing argument ads, "The world's a terrifying place, Be afraid. Be afraid."
MATTHEWS: I sense it's more –
ANDREA MITCHELL: But it's not a substantive argument. It was a scare tactic –
MITCHELL: -- by the Republican opponents of Democratic incumbents who tried to focus on ISIS and Ebola in the scariest, most non-factual ways to take the, the, you know, the eye off the real, the real issues, which were the economy. Because Democrats were dumb enough to not say, "Let's talk about the economy. Let's talk about pocket book issues."