‘Just Want to Make Sure You’re Sober’: Josh Hawley Battle With Reporter Over Musk Tweets Escalates to Questioning Blood Alcohol Levels


Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) got into a bizarre back-and-forth with a local reporter this week where things got so off the rails the journalist ended up offering to take a blood alcohol test.

Footage of the exchange was first obtained by Fox News Digital, which also gathered screenshots of multiple tweets from the reporter that appear to have since been deleted. In the interview with St. Louis’ KSDK News political editor Mark Maxwell, Hawley confronted the local reporter with his own tweets, primarily ones critical of Elon Musk and his supporters over his handling of Twitter.

“Why all the hate for people who like free speech on Twitter? What’s going on with that?” Hawley asked.

Maxwell replied he wasn’t sure what the senator was referring to and the interview morphed into Maxwell defending various tweets, including one where he called supporters of Musk “bootlickers.”

“Does anyone still think Elon buying this site and firing all the experts was a good idea? It’s been a while since I’ve seen any of his bootlickers brag on how efficient the site is now that Sir Galaxy Brain is in charge,” a March 6 tweet from Maxwell read.

Hawley called the tweet “sort of vitriolic,” to which Maxwell agreed. He also defended his use of the word “bootlickers.”

“Going to bat for him, defending him at every turn even when he was banning journalists from the site for no apparent reason. Yeah, I felt like the industry and journalism, a part of the First Amendment, has come under specific attack at times from Mr. Musk,” he said.

Hawley also highlighted a reply Maxwell tweeted when one person questioned whether he was sober.

“I never said I was sober,” the reporter tweeted.

“I hope you do our interview sober!” Hawley said. “I hope you’re sober now!”

“I try to, I try to,” Maxwell said.

After some more back and forth on another Elon Musk tweet, this time ripping his “minions,” Hawley again wondered about the reporter’s sobriety and then the discussion turned to blood alcohol tests.

“When journalists or so-called journalists refer to people they don’t like as ‘bootlickers’ on a public platform, when they attack folks and then say they don’t necessarily do stuff sober, it does tend to get my attention,” Hawley said. “I mean, we give you a lot of access. I just want to make sure that you’re actually sober and taking this seriously, Good Lord in Heaven.”

“I’m happy to do a blood alcohol test. I have had no alcohol this morning and that was a joke. I just want to clarify,” Maxwell said. “We’ll save the festivities for this weekend when the St. Patrick’s Day festivities take off, but that will be off the clock.”

Watch the full clip above.

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Zachary Leeman covered pop culture and politics at outlets such as Breitbart, LifeZette, BizPac Review, HollywoodinToto, and others. He is the author of the novel Nigh. He joined Mediaite in 2022.