I have, and always have had, tremendous respect for Cenk Uygur. His contract with his audience is that he will never put himself in a position where he cannot say what he really thinks. And in turning down MSNBC’s offer to host a weekend show so he could give his audience a fair appraisal of what happened, he honors that contract.
My experiences on MSNBC have always been positive, even when I have disagreed with the host. But there will be an enormous amount of money coming down the political pipeline in the next year and a half, controlled by the DNC. Moreover, they control access to the guests and the scoops that the cable network needs to do business. That puts a lot of pressure on management to cater to their messaging interests, whether they respond to them or not.
I have no idea if the decision to cut Cenk and go with people like Ezra Klein is a reflection of that dynamic, but it certainly exists. What I do know is that when Ed Shultz took a live poll as to whether his viewers would vote for someone who voted to cut Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid benefits, 94% said no:
When 82% of Republicans do not want Social Security benefits cut, it’s hardly surprising that the MSNBC audience would have this response.
Cenk Uygur’s message is perfectly in line with those results. Ezra “Gang of 6 deal is the best we can do” Klein’s is not. It will be interesting to see how MSNBC walks the line between maintaining a working relationship with the Democratic party, which Barack Obama unquestionably heads, and keeping the faith of the viewers who have diametrically opposing objectives in the looming debate about the future of the social safety net.
Cenk Uygur has tremendous integrity and he will continue to be an important voice in American politics. You can say thanks to Cenk and show your appreciation for all he does by hitting the “subscribe” button on the Young Turks Youtube channel.