Tensions have been running high around the country since President Donald Trump referenced Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s accusations against Judge Brett Kavanaugh at a rally in Mississippi on Tuesday. Trump listed the prosecutor’s questions for Ford, answering each one with “I don’t remember.”
Many in the media (even on Fox News) said Trump was mocking Ford, but the president still has a few ardent defenders. And this morning, two of them were out for blood.
Bernard McGuirk and Sid Rosenberg are unabashed Trump fans. The two proteges of Don Imus, who host Bernie and Sid in the Morning on WABC in New York, even interviewed Trump during their first week on air in April.
By contrast, the show’s news reporter Juliet Huddy has stated in the past that Trump tried to kiss her. Huddy, a former Fox News host, also accused Bill O’Reilly of sexual harassment. Coincidentally, both Rosenberg and McGuirk are friends with O’Reilly.
Despite these conflicting sensibilities, the trio has gotten along pretty well up to this point. But today, during Huddy’s 6:30 a.m. news report, she said that Trump “seemingly mocked” Ford. McGuirk and Rosenberg didn’t like that one bit.
“He didn’t mock her, he didn’t do her voice,” Rosenberg said. “I don’t care what his intention is, mocking is when you copy somebody. All he did was state the facts.”
“He was repeating her with a snide little sound in his voice,” Huddy retorted. “That’s how I heard it.”
“Who cares how you heard it?” Rosenberg replied. “You’re with the rest of the media, which are a bunch of liars.”
“Just because my opinion doesn’t jibe with your opinion doesn’t mean that I’m a liar,” Huddy said.
It’s worth pointing out at this point that both Rosenberg and Huddy are correct. According to Merriam-Webster, there are two definitions of mocking: “to imitate someone or something closely or mimic in sport and derision” and “to treat with contempt or ridicule.”
But ignoring the dictionary, the two of them continued to go at it. And McGuirk soon joined in.
“The same media, the same people, the same left who complained that Trump mocked Ford are the same people who applauded when Matt Damon ridiculed a falsely accused man,” he said. (Matt Damon played Kavanaugh on Saturday Night Live last weekend).
“If you’re including me in that, that’s not true,” Huddy said. “Anyone who contradicts your opinions is a liberal. I’m not a liberal.”
McGuirk interjected, “Finish your report,” but Huddy wasn’t done.
“I want to be able to say this, because I think it’s important,” she said. “You guys do it a lot. It’s not right to sit there and attack people because they don’t believe what you believe.”
“It’s not fair to attack the president because you don’t like him,” Rosenberg replied. “As the host of the show, he did not mock her.”
“You made your point and you made it very well, so good for you,” McGuirk added.
Huddy, who just returned from two weeks of vacation in Italy, regained her composure and finished her newscast. But the hosts weren’t done—they kept dredging up the topic throughout the show. McGuirk said that Trump simply performed a “recitation” and Rosenberg added the president was “stating the facts.”
Even call-in listeners took part in the slugfest. “I’m glad that Sid finally called out Juliet because it’s been getting a little bit monotonous,” Steve from Madison said. “A lot of the newscasts are slanted.”
“We have a really hard time listening to Juliet,” Larry from Kentucky added.
Huddy made one more attempt to defend herself later in the show, to no avail. “I said he mocked her, that is my interpretation that I put into my newscast,” she said. “When you say the media is lying, you’re indirectly calling me a liar.”
“If you want to take it that personally, that’s on you,” Rosenberg said. “He’s not mocking her. That’s not the definition of the goddamn word.”
Representatives for WABC did not respond to requests for comment.