MSNBC Host Lambastes FNC Exec for Daring 'Undermine' the MSM

NBC White House correspondent Chuck Todd, who also co-hosts the 9am ET hour of MSNBC on weekdays, bristled at Fox News Washington managing editor Bill Sammon's statement on the February 7 Fox News Sunday that "the mainstream media hates the tea party movement almost as much as it hates Sarah Palin." Todd called that "crazy" and suggested it was part of a cynical strategy by FNC to "undermine the 'mainstream media' because it's good for their business."

A study by the MRC's Culture and Media Institute in 2008 documented how ABC, CBS and NBC portrayed Palin as "a dunce or a demon" during her debut on the national stage, "running 18 negative stories for every positive one."

It's not as if MSNBC hosts refrain from taking pot shots at their media competitors - 8pm ET host Keith Olbermann routinely sneers at "Fixed News" - a fact which Todd may have implicitly conceded as he rued how "this is not just on the right, it's happening on the left as well."

But will Todd do anything about his own network's effort to "undermine" a competitor "because it's good for their business"?

Todd stated his case on the February 9 Morning Joe on MSNBC:

We all know there are a lot of different ways people get news. And then you have straight journalists, you have activist journalists, you have opinion folks. And we know that they're all out there. I think we believe here at NBC that people are smart enough to figure it out. And that's why when a news executive goes out there and states a crazy accusation like that, that it ends up, it only ends up probably hurting what they're trying to do, but it creates, it only denigrates all of us....

And, I'm sorry, there are certain news organizations out here whose agenda is to undermine the 90% of journalists who are just simply trying to cover stories out there. And that's what really frustrates me about what's happened in the media landscape. It is a business for some media organizations to undermine the quote-unquote mainstream media because it's good for their business. And this is not just on the right, it's happening on the left as well.

- Rich Noyes is Research Director at the Media Research Center.