Keith Ellison has full-blown meltdown on Sean Hannity's show [VIDEO]
Ellison didn't exactly try to elevate the level of political discourse during his segment with Hannity.
:::: UPDATE :::: DFL thanks Keith Ellison for melting down on Sean Hannity's show
During a shockingly heated debate last October, Keith Ellison made headlines for calling last year's challenger to his congressional seat, Chris Fields, a "lowlife scumbag." After the story went national with coverage that was mostly critical of his diss, Ellison apologized.
But he apparently didn't totally learn his lesson. Because Ellison was clearly operating out of the same playbook during his must-watch appearance yesterday on Sean Hannity's Fox News show.
Hannity invited Ellison on to talk about sequestration. But before the interview began, Hannity ran a video package that mocked "alarmist in chief" Barack Obama for repeating himself during recent speeches, for not being in Washington yesterday to try to hammer out a last-minute deal with congressional Republicans, and for using a teleprompter, among other grievances.
"If and when the Obama sequester takes effect on Friday, it's because the president was more concerned with fear-mongering than finding a solution to the problem he himself created," Hannity concluded after the video ended.
He then introduced Congressman Ellison, who was hot and bothered from the start. Here's a transcription of most of what was said during the interview -- transcribing every word of Ellison's constant string of interruptions would've been a superhuman task -- followed by the raw video.
ELLISON: Quite frankly, you are the worst excuse for a journalist I have ever seen.
HANNITY: I am the what? I can't hear you.
ELLISON: You heard me. What you just displayed was not journalism, it was yellow journalism. It wasn't anything close to trying to tell the American people what's really going on, and, it's just shocking to me--
HANNITY: To play Obama in his own words is yellow journalism?
ELLISON: Well with the background music and with your lead-up before you let the president talk. Let me tell you, I was here [i.e., in Washington D.C.]. Everything the president said is absolutely true and for you to try and make the American people think it isn't is deceptive on your part. And it's a breach of everything -- every journalistic ethic I have ever heard of was just violated by you. And the president was truthful, he was honest, what the president said was dead-on accurate. And for you to say the president is to blame here is ridiculous. I was there in August 2011, when the Republican Party, your party, which you shamelessly--
HANNITY: [Over Ellison's interruptions] I'm not a Republican, let me correct the record.
ELLISON: You are nothing but a Republican.
HANNITY: Sir, sir, Congressman, I am not a registered Republican, I am a registered conservative. [Ellison continues trying to talk over him]
ELLISON: You alibi them constantly, you alibi them 100 percent of the time.
HANNITY: Keep going, keep ranting.
ELLISON: What the president said is absoultey true. The people watching your show should ignore all the commentary that you put in, and all the hype music you put on, and should pay attention to what the president actually said. Because what the president said was true. You by the way are inaccurate when you say that the president is to blame here. He's not. It was the Republicans in August 2011 who said they were going to cause the American economy to default on debts we already acquired unless they got deep and substantial cuts. And we ended up with a downgrade because of what the Republicans did. And after that, we set up this thing called the supercommittee, when all the Republican members on that supercommittee had already pledged to Grover Norqust they would not raise revenue, only do cuts. And then after it failed as it always was going to, we ended up with sequester.
HANNITY: All right, let me ask you a question--
ELLISON: No, wait a minute, you said I could rant, and I am!
HANNITY: I've given you plenty of time to rant, Congressman. Now --
ELLISON: We'll let you get a word in, go ahead.
HANNITY: [Sarcastically] Oh, you're so nice to let me get a word in on my own program!
ELLISON: Okay, I change my mind. As a matter of fact, as a matter of fact--
HANNITY: [Over Ellison's constant interrupting] Congressman, calm-- I will give you your chance, I gave you three minutes to rant. Calm down! Relax. I got a question for you. You were invited on the program to answer a question, I want to give you a couple questions.
ELLISON: No, and I'm going to speak -- this is a First Amendment issue. I'm going to say what I think is right--
HANNITY: Let me ask you a question, why are you so angry? You're so angry.
ELLISON: Why are you so angry?
HANNITY: I'm not angry. I'm laughing at you because I think this is actually comical.
ELLISON: I'm laughing at you! I'm laughing at you! And it's not the first time.
HANNITY: Listen, I invited you on, I gave you three miutes to rant, now let me ask you a question, we'll have a discussion. In the spirit of bipartisanship, let's find a dialogue.
ELLISON: Who, you and me? I thought you weren't a Republican? Did you lie?
HANNITY: You want to make a thousand-dollar bet that I'm a registered conservative? You want to make a ten-thousand-dollar bet?
ELLISON: I don't bet. I don't bet.
HANNITY: I'm just telling you, I'm a registered conservative. I wrote a book called Conservative Victory, I didn't write Republican Victory.
ELLISON: Do you have a question for me, sir? Put it to me.
HANNITY: First of all, it was Max Baucus, and it was Bob Woodward, that said the president requested the sequester -- point one. Point number two -- my question to you is very simple. Barack Obama, because you said that what he said is true--
ELLISON: [Interrupting] The Budget Control Act was forced down the American public by the Republican Party. Sequester is a provision of the Budget Control Act. The Republicans are responsible for the Budget Control Act, which contains sequester.
HANNITY: I know, you're a broken record. Now let me get you my question.
ELLISON: You're a broken record.
HANNITY: Okay, thank you. Here's my question. So Barack Obama said in 2008 when he was running for office that George Bush was irresponsible and unpatriotic for... when he became president, we had 10 trillion dollars in debt. Now we have 16 trillion dollars in debt. [Ellison continues to interrupt] We now have 16 trillion dollars in debt, Congressman -- 16 trillion dollars in debt. I want to ask you, is it -- here's my question [throws hands up] Go ahead. [As he gives way to Ellison, Hannity can be heard saying, "Oh my gosh"]
ELLISON: You want to do something about that? I've got an answer for you. You want to do something about the 16 trillion, let's do something. Let's close loopholes on large corporations. Let's say that yachts and jets should not be something that you can write up. Let's say that Exxon Mobile and Chevron should not get a tax rebate and subsidy. Let's start there. Let's say that people who get to pay less, on uh--
HANNITY: [Sarcastically] All right, Congressman, you're ranting really well.
ELLISON: Well if you don't like what I'm saying, you say I'm ranting -- I'm not backing down from you--[Hannity interrupts]
HANNITY: Is it immoral? Is it immoral?--
ELLISON: [Cutting off Hannity's question] You are immoral -- to tell lies.
HANNITY: I'm immoral? What did I do that's immoral?
ELLISON: You tell mistruths -- you say things that aren't true.
HANNITY: Uh, give me one example sir.
ELLISON: To try to say, that it is, uh, that it is, uh, the president's fault and he is to blame is wrong and it's a lie. It's not true.
HANNITY: It's not his fault that we have 16 trillion in debt? We didn't add six trillion dollars to the debt since he's been president?
ELLISON: No, no-- wait a minute, what about the other 10? Let's talk about the other 10.
HANNITY: Al lright, Congressman, you are a total waste of time. I'm moving on, because our audience deserves better.
ELLISON: There you go. No you didn't...
Here's video of the interview, sans Hannity's opening video package (if you'd like to watch that Obama-bashing video, click here to see the whole segment):
Ellison's live-on-national-TV meltdown is especially stunning in light of the fact that he voluntarily agreed to do an interview on Hannity's program. It's one thing to go on a political opponent's show and try to make them look bad by winning an argument, but quite another to try to sabotage the whole production by constantly interrupting and telling your opponent he's "the worst excuse for a journalist I have ever seen" before he even has a chance to ask a question. Regardless of what you think of Hannity, this sort of behavior violates the treat-others-as-you-want-to-be-treated ethic and in general is just a bad look for one of our elected representatives.
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