Joe Scarborough claims that former President Donald Trump made people “forget what it was like to be Americans,” the media has come up with a totally new theory on COVID-19’s origins (just kidding, Trump said it first) and CNN’s Manu Raju pulls double duty as he reports both from Capitol Hill and the front lines of the Great Cicada Wars.
The 24-hour news cycle — coupled with thousands of media outlets and a gradual return from pandemic boredom to a somewhat normal life — makes it all but impossible for anyone to truly stay abreast of all the news.
So here it is, the week that was:
- CNN chief congressional correspondent Manu Raju had … a reaction when a cicada crawled up his neck as he prepared for a live shot. “F**king cicada!” he exclaimed. “What, do I have more on me?”
- Fox News host Dan Bongino torched media for bungling the lab-leak story — among others. “I don’t want to hear another peep from a liberal or a talking head media buffoon ever again about a conspiracy theory, okay?” he said. “When the Chinese government put out propaganda — ‘Don’t you dare say that this was a lab leak. Somebody ate bat soup’ — and then someone commented about people eating bat soup and everyone was called a racist for even commenting on bat soup for a story that was obviously Chinese propaganda. This is an infuriating mess, the media should wrap up shop and go home.”
- Comedian Bill Maher, back on the set of “Real Time” after contracting COVID-19, mocked Americans who needed to be bribed to get the coronavirus vaccine. “Now, in America, we’re bribing people to get the vaccine. They’re giving away college scholarships, free beer, and baseball tickets. California is giving away $160 million in cash and prizes. We’re at the Bob Barker phase of the pandemic,” Maher said. “I love this country. All over the world people are dying to get this vaccine but here they got to give you a jet ski first, then maybe I will consider.”
- Former Acting Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Chad Wolf said President Joe Biden’s administration was “breaking the system” at the U.S.-Mexico border. “[DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas] continues to say the border is closed and the border is secure. That is a lie. That is a lie to the American people,” Wolf told Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo, adding, “He’s misleading the American people on purpose because he’s done it, he’s done it multiple, multiple times.”
- “What about the women of CNN?” Fox News contributor Joe Concha asked whether any of CNN’s female employees were concerned that CNN anchor Chris Cuomo had advised his brother, Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, on how to handle multiple accusations of sexual harassment.
- New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman claims that former President Donald Trump has been telling allies that he expects to be “reinstated” by August.
- MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough argued that people had “forgotten what it was like to be Americans” because the Trump administration had destabilized the country. “Let me just educate everybody out there. I know some of you are new at this. Some of you maybe have forgotten what it’s like to be Americans. I know the last four, five years have been sort of destabilizing for you,” Scarborough said, blaming Trump for critics who attacked Vice President Kamala Harris’ Memorial Day weekend tweet.
- Concha compared White House senior medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci to the Kardashians and argued that his new book was an effort to profit off the coronavirus pandemic. “You had Cuomo profiting off the pandemic government official now we have Fauci doing it as well. I think this is appalling, guys,” he said.
- MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace fawned over Fauci in his first interview after his emails were made public, failing to press him on issues like the lab-leak theory or his private assessment of face masks. Instead she focused on the fact that he didn’t say anything mean about Trump in his private correspondence. “The true mark of someone is if they look good even when their personal emails come out, so you passed the test that very few of us would pass,” she said.
- Fox News host Martha MacCallum pressed National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director Dr. Francis Collins on the lab leak theory. “Doesn’t it matter where this came from? Doctor. Doctor, we have been told up and down that anybody that thinks that this was not a zoonotic virus is part of a conspiracy theory,” MacCallum said over Collins’ objections.