In a panel discussion on Thursday, MSNBC commentators and host Chris Matthews derided a Wednesday White House press conference that featured Republicans fawning over the president in celebration of their newly-passed tax plan.
“It was like a scene out of Julius Caesar yesterday on the south lawn of the White House,” Matthews said. “One by one Republican leaders lined up to praise his eminence, the imperious Donald Trump.”
Yamiche Alcindor, an MSNBC analyst and Capitol Hill reporter at The New York Times said that even the president could tell the performance smelled fishy.
“Eleven people in total, I think, went up there and stood up there and talked about how great he was,” she said, “when we know as Capitol Hill reporters you get eye rolls from a lot of these Republicans when you try to ask them off the record what they think about this president.”
“Most of the time they’re highly embarrassed by what he’s tweeted that morning,” Alcindor continued, “so to have Orrin Hatch up there calling him ‘possibly the best president ever’ — [Trump] knows there’s some flattering going on there and that it’s not quite genuine.”
Never-Trump conservative Charlie Sykes had even stronger words for his fellow Republicans.
“I get that they were excited, I get that they like tax cuts,” he said, “but why do you actually have this ritualized fluffing of the orange god-king?”
While it’s clear that their heaped praise is a “tactic” to “keep [Trump] in line,” Sykes said he felt like warning his party mates as he was watching their press conference.
“Do you understand you’re doing this in public, we can see what you’re doing here?” he joked. “I mean, this is great, Paul [Ryan], you got your tax cuts. But have a little pride, just a little bit of dignity left when all this is over.”
You can watch the entire segment below, via MSNBC.