Cenk Uygur Explains Political Involvement in Media: When I Was at MSNBC, I Had Issues With Obama’s Team


Earlier this month, MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski claimed that during the election season, Hillary Clinton‘s team had tried to have her removed from the air. It seemed really shocking — and, to some, dubious — at the time, but to The Young Turks‘ Cenk Uygur, it was nothing new.

“I’ve been there, Sister,” he joked before explaining that both political parties reach out to the media when they don’t like some content. Democrats are more likely to do it in general, he said, but Republicans are more likely to engage in “beating down” the press.

Uygur actually worked at MSNBC back in the day, so this is what he revealed about the relationship between Washington and the press:

When I was at MSNBC, I had issues with the Obama administration … I got told by the person who runs MSNBC — who still runs it, Phil Griffin — that Washington was not happy with my tone and that NBC was not outsiders, they were insiders and I [needed] to act more like it. I didn’t and, hence, I left MSNBC over that disagreement.

He said that anyone who doesn’t believe that political campaigns and administrations will call up a news organization to voice grievances or that a media company will kowtow to Beltway insiders is naive because everyone does it.

Uygur explained that media companies “kiss up” to the politicians because it gives them access. Beyond that, it brings in ad revenue. It’s “how they play ball,” he explained.

His co-host Ana Kasparian observed, “That’s essentially the state running the media.”

[image: screengrab]

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