CNN Host Michael Smerconish Rebuked for Comparing Sanders Surge to Surge to Spread of Coronavirus

CNN / YouTube Michael Smerconish Primetime Intro 1583067327.jpg...
CNN / YouTube

Radio personality and CNN weekend host Michael Smerconish came under fire Saturday morning—along with the network—for “casually” portraying the surging prospects of Democratic presidential frontrunner Sen. Bernie Sanders as comparable to the threat of the infectious coronavirus which continues to spread in the United States and around the world.

Faiz Shakir, Sanders’ campaign manager, said he just had “to laugh at their foolish panic,” but others said it was just the latest example of a snide and potentially dangerous attack by a member of the corporate media’s pundit class that remains antagonistic towards the Democratic primary’s most progressive candidate.

Watch:

The comments come as South Carolina voters head to the polls in the last of the fourth single-day early voting states and three days before Super Tuesday on March 3.

Author and activist Naomi Klein, who endorsed Sanders last year, said the remarks by Smerconish signal an incredibly dangerous manner of thinking:

Later in his show, Smerconish interviewed Pressley Stutts, the chair of the Greenville Tea Party in South Carolina, who falsely claimed Sanders is a communist and then called his supporters “skulls full of mush.” Notably, observers pointed out, the CNN host did not push back on either comment.

With Sanders running as the first Jewish candidate with a very serious chance of becoming the Democratic nominee, Ruben Chandrasekar, executive director of the International Rescue Committee, agreed with others who warned that comparing Bernie’s surging campaign to a disease has serious and worrisome anti-Semitic undertones.

“Smerconish comparing the spread of coronavirus to movement leading the Sanders campaign is tone deaf at best,’ Chandrasekar tweeted from his personal account in response to the clip. ⁦He said journalist David Doel, who hosts the TRN Show on YouTube, was “right to point out to the historically racist tropes comparing Jews to viruses. ⁦CNN⁩ must apologize.”

Following Smerconish’s comments, Doel posted a short video in response in which said the remarks were “crazy” and “absurd,” and that even though he first laughed when he saw them, the implications of the segment are very serious.

Watch:

“This is indefensible,” argued Doel. “If this happened to any other candidate it wouldn’t be a big deal, but the fact that it happened to the Jewish candidate in the race, makes it completely ridiculous, absurd, and stunning.”

Thank you to all who already support our work since we could not exist without your generosity. If you have not already, please consider supporting us on Patreon to ensure we can continue bringing you the best of independent journalism.

Leave a Comment

3 Comments on "CNN Host Michael Smerconish Rebuked for Comparing Sanders Surge to Surge to Spread of Coronavirus"

avatar
newest oldest most voted
Geraldine Brown
Guest
Geraldine Brown

Problem with CNN it tries to appeal to Fox viewers too. Idiots. But it is a corporate entity. So what can one expect. I am tired of CNN.

William J Stefens
Guest
William J Stefens

Of you are going to attack any candidate, attack their policies with factual information with comparable policies that can reasonably state as being better. To compare a candidate with a disease by any means is sick, irresponsible, unprofessional, and potentially racist. Michael Smerconish does need to apologise personally to Sanders.

Inzane
Guest
Inzane

The danger is those with the same sophistication as a Trump ass-kisser, will take this within the wrong context.
I doubt any CNN commentator has the same bent as a Carlson.or Hannity..but many things can be easily misinterpreted.
That clarification should come from CNN. 4 years ago it would jave been considered as a bad choice of words. Today it is tinder for another blaze.