Former President George H.W. Bush says MSNBC entertainers Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow are “sick puppies” for the way they treat his son — former President George W. Bush — and other who don’t agree with him.
The elder Bush, in an interview with CBS News, singled out the two liberal talk show hosts as examples of what he called an increasing lack of civility in politics.
“I don’t like it,” Bush said of the coarse tone of national debate. “The cables have a lot to do with it. It’s not just the right. There are plenty of people on the left.”
Maddow and Olbermann anchor MSNBC’s nightly dishing of liberal opinion and often single out George W. Bush for harsh commentary and treatment. Although neither are trained journalists, the cable network bills their talkfests as “news” shows.
“The way they treat my son and anyone who’s opposed to their point of view is just horrible,” Bush said.
Bush told CBS that harsh, unrelenting criticism “should not be par for the course. To the degree it turns off one student or one person from serving, that’s bad.”
The former President was also critical of right-wing commentators for the way they treat current President Barack Obama. The attacks, he said, “crosses the lines of civility” but added that he did not think the majority of attacks from the right stemmed from racism.
“You might find some racists out there but I don’t think the attacks per se have to do that he’s an African American,” Bush told the network.
Both Maddow and Olbermann reacted to Bush’s comments with expected hyperbole, saying the former President was guilty of “name calling.” (video below):