Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

There are only a few days left in our critical Mid-Year Campaign and we truly might not make it without your help.
Please join us. If you rely on independent media, support Common Dreams today. This is crunch time. We need you now.

Join the small group of generous readers who donate, keeping Common Dreams free for millions of people each year. Without your help, we won’t survive.

Chris Matthews interviews Sen. Elizabeth Warren following a recent Democratic presidential primary debate. On Tuesday, Matthews questioned Warren's position that former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is lying about reports that he sexually harassed and discriminated against his employees.

Chris Matthews interviews Sen. Elizabeth Warren following a recent Democratic presidential primary debate. On Tuesday, Matthews questioned Warren's position that former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is lying about reports that he sexually harassed and discriminated against his employees. (Photo: MSNBC/screenshot)

"Fire Chris Matthews," Women's Rights Group Says After MSNBC Host Grills Warren Over Discrimination Claims Against Bloomberg

"He is not fit to continue to cover this election. MSNBC can and must do better, and they can start by firing Chris Matthews."

Julia Conley

Women's advocacy group UltraViolet called on MSNBC to fire host Chris Matthews Wednesday after he cast doubt on accusations of harassment leveled at billionaire Michael Bloomberg following Tuesday evening's Democratic debate.

The comments came as Matthews interviewed Sen. Elizabeth Warren after the debate. Warren during the debate launched her second attack on Bloomberg over multiple allegations of harassment and discrimination at his media company and the non-disclosure agreements employees signed as part of legal settlements.

Demanding to know how Warren could be sure the accusations against Bloomberg are true, Matthews offered "a textbook example of why people don't report sexual misconduct," tweeted HuffPost reporter Marina Fang.

Watch:

Calling Bloomberg the "riskiest" candidate in the Democratic field and one who won't be able to earn voters' "trust," Warren on the debate stage had recounted her own story of facing pregnancy discrimination early in her teaching career.

Although there were no federal laws to protect her, Warren said, "At least I didn't have a boss who said to me, 'Kill it,' the way that Mayor Bloomberg is documented to have said to one of his pregnant employees."

Warren later said Bloomberg's former employee's "own words" were evidence that he had urged the woman to get an abortion. Another former employee, David Zielenziger, told the Washington Post that he had also witnessed the exchange, and said he viewed it as "outrageous" at the time.

Nevertheless, in her post-debate interview with MSNBC, Matthews grilled Warren about the veracity of the claim.

"You believe he's lying?" Matthews asked. "Why would he lie? Because just to protect himself? ... I just want to make sure that you're clear about this."

"We have gone on and on and on where people say, 'Oh, I can't really believe the women.' Really? Why not?" Warren said. "Why would she lie?"

Matthew's "refusal to believe women," as well as his own history of sexual harassment allegations, should be considered grounds for his dismissal, UltraViolet executive director Shaunna Thomas said in a statement.

"MSNBC needs to fire Chris Matthews. Today," said Thomas. "He is not fit to continue to cover this election. MSNBC can and must do better, and they can start by firing Chris Matthews."

Others on social media echoed the call and condemned Matthews for his line of questioning, which, Massachusetts congressional candidate Brianna Wu tweeted, put Warren "under fire, not Bloomberg."

Warren reiterated her own experience in her conversation with Matthews, reminding him, "I've been on her end of it... It happens all across the country and men all across this country say, 'Oh my gosh, he would never have said that.'"

"We applaud Senator Warren for standing with survivors of workplace abuse and bringing up these comments at the debate—it is clear that she supports and believes women—something that every Democratic nominee for president can and must do," Thomas said.


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

Just a few days left in our crucial Mid-Year Campaign and we might not make it without your help.
Who funds our independent journalism? Readers like you who believe in our mission: To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. No corporate advertisers. No billionaire founder. Our non-partisan, nonprofit media model has only one source of revenue: The people who read and value this work and our mission. That's it.
And the model is simple: If everyone just gives whatever amount they can afford and think is reasonable—$3, $9, $29, or more—we can continue. If not enough do, we go dark.

All the small gifts add up to something otherwise impossible. Please join us today. Donate to Common Dreams. This is crunch time. We need you now.

Flint Residents 'Disgusted' After Court Throws Out Indictments of Top Officials

"It has become increasingly clear that the judicial system is not a viable option for a poor majority Black community facing injustice," said Flint Rising.

Jessica Corbett ·


Sanders, Fetterman Urge Buttigieg to Fine Airlines Over Flight Cancellations

"The American people are sick of airlines ripping them off, canceling flights at the last minute, and delaying flights for hours on end," said the Vermont senator.

Jake Johnson ·


In Blow to Voting Rights, SCOTUS Saves Louisiana's Racially Rigged Electoral Map

"Black Louisianans deserve fair representation. The fight for racial justice and equality is far from over," vowed one civil rights group.

Brett Wilkins ·


Watching US With Horror, European Groups Push Leaders to Strengthen Abortion Rights

"This is an important moment for leaders across Europe who are committed to reproductive rights to lead by example and galvanize action in their own countries," said one campaigner.

Jake Johnson ·


Women Face Chaos, Torment as Abortion Clinics Shutter Across US

Clinic workers are attempting to get patients appointments out-of-state while women stockpile emergency contraception, fearing overcrowded clinics even in states that protect reproductive rights.

Julia Conley ·

Common Dreams Logo