Chuck Todd Calls Out NBC for Hiring Ronna McDaniel on ‘Meet the Press,’ Tells Host ‘I Think Our Bosses Owe You an Apology’ | Video

The show’s former moderator expresses his outrage for the network putting Kristen Welker in the position to interview the former RNC chair after NBC News hired her as a contributor

Chuck Todd MTPFF
Chuck Todd moderated panels at this year's Meet The Press Film Festival at DOC NYC (Ralph Bavaro)

Chuck Todd made it clear during Sunday’s roundtable discussion on “Meet the Press” that he is not happy that his bosses at NBC News have hired former Republican National Committee chair Ronna McDaniel as a contributor. He fired his own shots at the network just minutes after host Kristen Welker grilled McDaniel in a contentious interview, her first since leaving the RNC.

“I think our bosses owe you an apology for putting you in this situation,” Todd told Welker, who had informed viewers prior to the interview with McDaniel that the segment had been booked weeks in advance and without the knowledge of McDaniel’s impending hiring. The hire was announced by NBC News this past Friday.

McDaniel’s hiring was met with internal backlash at NBC, as members of the NBC News staff — particularly at MSNBC — spoke out publicly about the decision. Video of Todd’s remarks was shared online by MSNBC’s own Symone Sanders Townsend. Complaints stem from the former party chair having offered support to Donald Trump’s unsubstantiated claims that the 2020 election had been stolen from him. The backlash has gotten so strong that NBC’s sister network, MSNBC, told staff it has no plans to have McDaniel on any of its shows.

“Look, there’s a reason why there’s a lot of journalists at NBC News uncomfortable with this,” Todd said. “Because many of our professional dealings with the RNC over the last six years have been met with gaslighting, have been met with character assassination.”

During her interview with Welker, McDaniel said she believed Joe Biden won the 2020 presidential election “fair and square,” but Welker pressed her on claims she made to the contrary during a CNN interview with Chris Wallace last July.

“Ronna, to the people who feel like you enabled Donald Trump and his lies about the election, do you owe people an apology? Do you owe this country an apology?” Welker asked.

“I think the fact that we looked at things is what Democrats have done, Republicans have done,” McDaniel responded. “We’re allowed to look after elections and say, ‘I want to make sure this was done in a transparent and fair way.’ And I certainly do not agree with violence or any attacks on our Capitol. And I’m going to be very clear: that is something I condemn wholeheartedly.”

Afterwards, Todd praised Welker for handling an “impossible situation” and for doing “a good job of exposing, I think, many of the contradictions” in how McDaniel has spoken about Trump’s 2020 election claims.

“She is now a paid contributor by NBC News,” Todd told Welker. “I have no idea whether any answer she gave to you was because she didn’t want to mess up her contract. She wants us to believe that she was speaking for the RNC when the RNC was paying for it. So she has credibility issues that she still has to deal with.”

Watch Todd’s full remarks in the clip above.


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