Filling in for John Heilemann on the Monday edition of Bloomberg’s With All Due Respect, Campbell Brown took a shot at House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for “whining about President Obama” in an interview that aired Sunday on CBS’s 60 Minutes.
Following a clip from the interview, Brown first credited Boehner for “holding a very diverse, you know, House together,” but she then quickly reversed course and made this swipe at Boehner and McConnell: “[I]n terms of being messengers for the party right now, it sounds a lot like whining.”
Adding a few of his own was co-host Mark Halperin, who told Brown that Boehner and McConnell were “pretty good” on 60 Minutes, but are “still negative” in their messaging and “more about criticism than they are about concrete solutions.”
Brown and Halperin also agreed that, until the Republican presidential nominee is selected in 2016, Boehner and McConnell will remain as the leaders of the Republican Party.
“Until there is a presidential nominee, John Boehner and Mitch McConnell have that mantle,” proclaimed Brown.
At the end of the discussion, Halperin concluded that having Boehner and McConnell continue to be the face of the party will be “a huge problem”:
It is a huge problem because, again, for the next nine months, 10 months, maybe a year and a quarter, they are going to be the face of the party. I applaud them for trying, but I do not think that hey are right now in a position to enunciate a positive agenda on the issues where the President is out there, everyday, talking.
The relevant portions of the transcript from Bloomberg’s With All Due Respect on January 26 can be found below (with assistance from the MRC's Scott Whitlock).
With All Due Respect
January 26, 2015
5:06 p.m. Eastern
CAMPBELL BROWN: If Reince Priebus is the head of the Republican Party, who is the voice of the party? Mitt Romney? Hardly. Until there is a presidential nominee, John Boehner and Mitch McConnell have that mantle and here is part of their interview on 60 Minutes. We clipped the part where they are whining about President Obama. Take a look.
MITCH MCCONNELL: He seems to have completely forgotten, or chose to ignore, the election last November.
JOHN BOEHNER: You know, the President could have, at the State of the Union, just put out an olive branch, could have taken a little bit different tone that would have indicated that there is some interest in working with us.
BROWN: So, are these the right two guys to be leading the Republican Party right now?
MARK HALPERIN: I mean, it’s somewhat of a question that has no meaning because they are going to be there and the competitive Republican fight means no leading voice is going to come from the presidential ranks anytime soon. They’re inside players. I thought, last night, they were, actually, on 60 Minutes pretty good, but they are far from ideal as spokespeople. As you and I talked about earlier, they are still negative. They are still more about criticism than they are about concrete solutions. It is hard to lead from congress on Capitol Hill against a President, particularly one whose fired up, but boy, if I were them, I would have send Paul Ryan out to do 60 Minutes and not them.
BROWN: They are good at some things, It's organizing Congress, holding a very diverse, you know, House together as Boehner has done, for better or for worse, but in terms of being messengers for the party right now, it sounds a lot like whining.
HALPERIN: It is a huge problem because, again, for the next nine months, 10 months, maybe a year and a quarter, they are going to be the face of the party. I applaud them for trying, but I do not think that hey are right now in a position to enunciate a positive agenda on the issues where the President is out there, everyday, talking.