WATCH: Joy Reid schools Wall Street Journal columnist defending Kushner’s backchannel Russia overtures
Appearing as a guest on Meet the Press, MSNBC host joy Reid shot down a Wall Street Journal columnist who claimed she saw nothing wrong with President Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner’s attempt to set up a backchannel communication link between the White House and the Kremlin.
According to columnist Kimberly Strassel, the fact that there are concerns about Kushner’s actions is nonsense.
“I think we are having a discussion that is absolutely divorced from reality,” Strassel began. “Let me set the scene for you — it’s 2008, we’re having an election, and candidate Obama, he’s not even president-elect, sends William Miller over to Iran and establish a backchannel and let the Iranians know, should he win the election, they’ll have friendlier terms. This is a private citizen going to a foreign country with a sworn enemy of the United States. Is that bad judgment? Is that a bad thing that happened?”
Reid jumped in to “set the scene” for Strassel about Kushner by explaining the “key difference.”
“In October, months before this latest meeting, and it was one of 18 separate contacts that we now know of between the Trump campaign and Russia, our primary adversary in the world, the collective judgment of the 17 intelligence agencies was that Russia had been taking active measures in our election,” Reid began.
“So in December the now-president-elect decides he’s going to name Jim Mattis as our Secretary of Defense but he doesn’t open a backchannel,” Reid continued. “He sends his real estate developer son-in-law, or the real estate developer son-in-law decides to open a backchannel — and it isn’t a backchannel. You don’t go to the adversary country and say, ‘Let’s set something up inside of your secure facility, we’ll set it up in your secure facility,’ which even takes them aback. Then if it’s a channel about opening up negotiations in terms of something about foreign policy, why are they also backchanneling with a bank, a Kremlin-connected Russian bank?”
“We don’t know the answer to any of those questions,” Strassel protested.
Conservative commentator Charlie Sykes jumped in to tell Strassel, “You have to follow the money, you have to follow the lies, attempts to derail this investigation.”
“We don’t have any of that information,” Strassel demurred.
“The reality is that Jared Kushner and the Trump administration apparently trusted the Russians more than the intelligence community,” Sykes shot back. “How can this not be suspicious?”
Strassel attempted to blame the Obama administration, saying they couldn’t be trusted, only to have Reid step back in.
“In December the election was over,” Reid lectured. “In this country we have a continuity of government. We hand over peacefully power from one party to another. Are you telling me the now-elected Trump administration didn’t trust John Brennan, that the straight arrow guys in the intelligence community were going to now work to undermine them? Are they now seeing them as a dissidents? That has never happened in the history of the United States.”
Watch the video below via MSNBC: