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Awkward: CNBC host speechless after Barney Frank asks about high salaries for ‘poor’ bankers

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CNBC host Maria Bartiromo and former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson were momentarily stunned on Sunday when former Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) asked them why the “poor beleaguered bankers” could afford to pay themselves excessively high salaries but could not find a way to pay their debts without a government bailout.

During an NBC Meet the Press segment to mark the five year anniversary of the 2008 economic collapse, Frank explained that new regulations meant that banks could not become “too big too fail” because they would not receive government help if they were overly indebted.

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NBC host David Gregory observed that only 14 percent of Americans had a positive view of Wall Street firms, and that growing income inequality meant that the banks may have come out on top.

“We need to get beyond the conversation of ‘Is Wall Street evil? Are the bankers evil and causing pain?'” Bartiromo insisted. “And toward the conversation of how do you create sustainable economic growth. That will answer the issue of inequality. Because with growth, come jobs.”

“I couldn’t agree more,” Paulson said. “I mean, to me, that’s what it’s all about is sustainable economic growth.”

Frank interrupted with a simple question: “I do want to add one thing to your point about those poor, beleaguered bankers, who have been forced to do so much that they can’t lend money. If they really are running businesses that are so stressed that they can’t do their basic work, why are they paying themselves so much money?”

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“Where did these enormous salaries come from if they were, in fact, such serious trouble,” he asked.

That query was met with several seconds of awkward silence as members of the panel looked at each other nervously.

Finally, Gregory and Bartiromo broke the silence with forced laughter.

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“Thank you for giving me that one,” Bartiromo quipped.

With that, Gregory quickly pivoted to how Washington could help to “get beyond some of the resentment of the bankers.”

Watch the video below from NBC’s Meet the Press, broadcast Sept. 15, 2013.

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(h/t: Video Cafe)

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Stephen Colbert rips ‘idiot’ GOP senator for defending Trump’s unconstitutional self-dealing

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"Late Show" host Stephen Colbert returned from New Zealand for a new show that aired Monday evening.

"I have been as far from the insatiable black hole of news that is Donald Trump as you can get on this planet.

I've heard there have been some developments over the last 10 days that did not go well for Donnie,"

The host ripped Trump's 71-minute press conference.

"Seventy-one minutes is not a press conference, it's a one man show," he explained. "If you liked 'Fleabag,' you'll love Donald Trump in 'Douchebag,'" he said.

[caption id="attachment_1555275" align="aligncenter" width="800"] ‘The Late Show’ graphic (screengrab)[/caption]

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2020 Election

Maddow warns Russia is interfering in the 2020 election in ‘exactly the same way’ as they did in 2016

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MSNBC's Rachel Maddow on Monday warned that Russia and the Republicans are running the "exact same play" against Democrats in 2020 -- and this time will be aided by the United States Justice Department.

"And they are playing it again already for the next election. And some of it is happening just like it did in 2016. And some of it is worse and I think it’s going to be more powerful than it was in 2016. In part because this is a second draft for these guys, right? They ran this play in 2016. They worked out some of the kinks," she explained. "Now they’ll do it again with the benefit of knowing what worked for them and what didn’t work the first time around. It’s a second draft. It’s going to be better and more polished."

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CNN

Ex-Defense Secretary lays into Trump’s Syria pullout: He ‘plays into’ authoritarians’ hands to ‘weaken the United States’

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On Monday's edition of CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360," former Secretary of Defense and CIA Director Leon Panetta blasted President Donald Trump over his foreign policy — particularly his withdrawal from Syria.

"Secretary Panetta, just generally what do you make of how this whole withdrawal, non-withdrawal is being handled by the White House?" asked Cooper. "We're seeing the administration trying to walk back a broad policy announcement from the president."

"I think from the very beginning this has been a — probably the most disastrous foreign policy blunder in recent history," said Panetta. "And there is no way when you commit a blunder like this that involves the consequences we're now seeing, there's no way to paint this picture as if somehow everything's going well."

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