Chris Matthews Called Conservative Political Talk 'Ugly,' But Laughs at Murdering Grandma

A clearly amused Chris Matthews narrated and laughed at a liberal ad showing Republican Paul Ryan murdering an elderly woman by throwing her off a cliff. This is the same MSNBC anchor who railed against "ugly" conservative talk and wondered if it led to the shooting of Representative Gabrielle Giffords.

After playing a lengthy excerpt, Matthews enthused, "Boy, I love the point of view on that one as she tries to slow down with her feet. Anyway, the irony here, Paul Ryan may be driving the Republican Party off the cliff..." Earlier he played a clip and snickered at the image of Congressman Ryan dropping a screaming grandmother to her death.

In contrast, on the January 11, 2011 Hardball, Matthews highlighted the shooting of Giffords and foamed, "People like Mark Levin, Michael Savage, for example who every time you listen to them are furious, furious at the Left with anger that just builds and builds in their voice, and by the time they go to commercial, they're just in some rage, every night, with ugly talk. Ugly sounding talk." [MP3 audio here.]

He lamented that conservatives see the other side "as evil, as awful. Not just disagreeable but evil." Matthews then implicated these talk radio hosts in the shooting of Giffords by a deranged person: "And my question is doesn't that give the moral license to people who have crazy minds to start with?"

Yet, on Tuesday, Matthews joked, "Finally, grandma gets thrown off the cliff." Earlier, he called it an "ad that's over the edge, literally." But, this was also made in an amused tone.

If "ugly" conservative talk about policy leads people to violence, what does a video showcasing Republican murder do? And why isn't Chris Matthews outraged?

A transcript of the May 24 segment, which aired at 5:33pm EDT, follows:


CHRIS MATTHEWS: And talk about an ad that's over the edge, literally. A liberal group has produced [ad plays onscreen.]- catch- Oh, there you see it, not holding back on that one. [Laughs.] Throwing grandma or- that's- I think it is supposed to be Paul Ryan pushing the wheelchair with grandma over the edge. That's in the Sideshow. We will show you the full ad.


MATTHEWS: Finally, grandma gets thrown off the cliff. A liberal group called The Agenda Project has just released an ad whacking at Paul Ryan's to privatize Medicare. Subtle? This ad is not.

[Plays ad of Ryan throwing an old woman off a cliff.]

MATTHEWS: Boy, I love the point of view on that one as she tries to slow down with her feet. Anyway, the irony here, Paul Ryan may be driving the Republican Party off the cliff, which brings us to tonight's big number. In December, last December, the chance Republicans would keep control of the of House of Representatives in 2012 stood at 79 percent on Amid the Ryan budget controversy, what are the betting odds now with the Medicare kerfuffle? Just 50/50. All even. Republicans have just a 50 percent chance of holding on to their majority next year because of that Medicare problem. Tonight's big number.

- Scott Whitlock is the senior news analyst for the Media Research Center. Click here to follow him on Twitter.