Lawrence O’Donnell, host of MSNBC’s “The Last Word,” truly insulted me and most of his viewers recently. He asked us to leave to room, go cook something, do the dishes, or take a walk. He wanted a very narrow audience, the twelve new Senators elected on November 6.
His point was that their political future would best be ensured if they maintained a low profile with the national media and limited their appearances to local media within their state. His reason was that voters in their states want to feel special; that their newly elected senator was exclusively dedicated to the interests of his or her constituents and did not have aspirations to rise into the national spotlight.
The example that he used was Senator Al Franken of Minnesota, a one-time high-profile comedian. Franken has exclusively appeared on Minnesota outlets, with one exception. That was when he was sandbagged into an interview at the Democratic National Convention by one reporter. The reporter happened to be none other than Lawrence O’Donnell. Franken knew that he was stuck; that he couldn’t just run away from an interview. However he justified his appearance because he was standing in the middle of the Minnesota delegation at the convention.