Jay Carney: Damn right I called MSNBC to complain about Halperin’s comment

posted at 6:24 pm on June 30, 2011 by Allahpundit

What choice did he have? If they let this slide, who knows how many “Obama’s a dick” jokes would be filling the airwaves at, um, the most famously liberal cable network in America? (Then again…)

Axelrod’s taking the high road on this, which is smart, but I do think they’re bothered by it and not without reason. “Obama’s a dick” is basically the opposite of the “adult in the room” crap they’re pushing as their 2012 messaging. It’s one thing for conservative media to say stuff like that (without the profanity, natch), it’s another to have it come in bracing, sensational form on cable news from a guy like Halperin who, for better or worse (read: worse), influences the CW among Beltway political journalists. Gotta nip those unhelpful memes in the bud before they propagate; as it is, the next time The One gets snotty at a presser or during an interview, reporters will point back to Halperin’s goof as a reminder that he’s been known to be petulant now and again. And yes, granted, they’ll all be in the tank once the campaign starts hopping, but the campaign won’t be hopping for nine more months. Lots of time still for damaging reads on O to spread in the media. E.g., if the economy continues to stagger and the public finally loses patience with him, the many stories about President Spock’s aloofness might start to play differently with voters than the “cool, cerebral” way in which they were intended.

As for the oft-repeated point today that calling a Republican a dick might have been treated differently on a network known for its fondness for “teabagger” jokes, well, yes. MSNBC wants access to the administration, and while there’s almost zero chance that the White House would punish them by cutting them off — especially when Fox stands to benefit — it was probably wise to play it safe and yank Halperin pronto.

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So he’s a pusillanimous dick.

VerbumSap on June 30, 2011 at 9:18 PM

VerbumSap on June 30, 2011 at 9:18 PM

Whatever he said!

Bambi on June 30, 2011 at 9:29 PM

I don’t believe Halperin called Obama a “dick” I believe he said “He acted like a “dick” yesterday.” There is a difference. Can anyone imagine one of George Bush’s press secretaries calling a LSM outlet every time he was insulted, he wouldn’t have had time for the daily briefing.

Vote Republican and only be called a racist one more time.

bflat879 on June 30, 2011 at 9:33 PM

MSNBC has been referring to tea partiers in pornographic terms for years. What hypocrites. But I’m not in the least surprised.

Murf76 on June 30, 2011 at 10:17 PM

Sorry, what was the problem? Halperin got the gender wrong?

Kenosha Kid on June 30, 2011 at 10:22 PM

It’s not that Halperin was wrong, it’s just his message wasn’t clear.

dthorny on June 30, 2011 at 10:46 PM

Didn’t Obama call some people “teabaggers” a while back?

UnEasyRider on July 1, 2011 at 12:57 AM

He is a dick.

Ronnie on July 1, 2011 at 1:01 AM

So to be safe we should refer to President Dick as President Richard Head?

DSchoen on July 1, 2011 at 3:02 AM

Don’t remember any complaints when Harry Reid called Bush a loser

Raisedbywolves on July 1, 2011 at 3:40 AM

Beings the established Morning Joe/MSNBC acceptable standards are along the lines of


It’s obvious that Halperin wasn’t fired for just uttering a fraction of the above.

Exit question? What would the Journo-Tard establishment have done if the Bush White House would have called Fox News and demanded the firing of Juan Williams…and Fox News would have done Bush’ bidding?

MNHawk on July 1, 2011 at 7:13 AM