Did MSNBC Really Put Omarosa on Air to Reveal a ‘Tape’ of Michael Cohen Boarding a Plane?


Yesterday was a huge day, what could have been “the most consequential day of the Trump presidency yet,” if you take Chuck Todd‘s word for it.

Amidst the madness, a dollop of drama was added to the 7 p.m. hour of MSNBC. It was announced that Omarosa Manigault Newman, the former Trump official with a penchant for recording conversations in the White House, would be appearing on Hardball with Chris Matthews.

Manigault Newman’s appearance was scheduled just as President Donald Trump took the stage for a rally in West Virginia. Perfectly timed programming.

Matthews previewed the appearance in a tweet (“she has video tapes”!) causing a frenzy on social media:

Hardball even did a promo, featuring Manigault Newman herself, touting her “receipts”:

The big reveal? A short video tape of Michael Cohen smiling as he boarded Trump’s plane during the 2016 campaign.

Manigault Newman claimed that tape demonstrates that Cohen “was in fact involved with the campaign.”

“Today changed everything,” she said dramatically. “This is the beginning of the end for Donald Trump … because he knows that the person who knows everything about him, about his relationship with these women and others people may not know about will come to light.”

If that video was the best Manigault Newman could wheel out on a day like yesterday, it doesn’t seem like she has much more up her sleeve.

MSNBC should’ve seen this coming. The president’s former reality TV contestant turned White House aide has pursued such an obvious campaign of manufactured drama since she left the White House, CNN even blackballed her. Good for them.

The moment Manigault Newman was fired from the administration for ethics violations she walked out of the White House and onto the set of Celebrity Big Brother, to declare that she was terrified by Trump and his administration. That obvious ploy should’ve been enough to discount her as a credible talking head. If she shows up to your set with newsworthy tapes you can vet, so be it.

In the case of Hardball Tuesday night, her tape failed to deliver. MSNBC got burned the last time it hyped up an appearance from Manigault Newman, and to fall for the charade a second time is embarrassing.

This is an opinion piece. The views expressed in this article are those of just the author.

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Aidan McLaughlin is the Editor of Mediaite. Send tips via email: aidan@mediaite.com. Ask for Signal. Follow him on Twitter: @aidnmclaughlin