Meghan McCain, formerly the lone conservative on ABC’s “The View,” returned to network television Sunday as a panelist on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” much to the disgust of the left.
Host Chuck Todd introduced her as a columnist for the [U.K.] Daily Mail, a gig she began earlier this month, saying it was “good to have a McCain back on ‘Meet the Press’” in reference to the frequent appearances by her father, the late Sen. John McCain.
Less welcoming were an assortment of blue-check media figures and progressives who called Ms. McCain unqualified for the position and blasted the network for including her on the panel.
“There are 300 million people available to be on Sunday’s Meet the Press panel and Chuck Todd has decided the most qualified person who earned it the most is Meghan McCain,” Matt Negrin, digital producer for Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah,” sarcastically tweeted.
Ms. McCain, who left “The View” last month after a four-year stint, participated in a discussion on the infrastructure spending package with Cook Political Report publisher Amy Walter, NBC Capitol Hill reporter Leigh Ann Caldwell and Princeton professor Eddie S. Glaude Jr.
Ms. McCain offered commentary on moderate Democratic Sens. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin III of West Virginia, saying the Democratic hostility surprised her because, speaking of Mr. Manchin’s deep-red state, “if it’s not him, it’s going to be a Republican.”
Democratic strategist Cliff Schecter scoffed that Ms. McCain “knows zip about politics” and compared her to the Kardashians, while journalist and former CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien tweeted that she “lies on camera, she has zero value as a guest, certainly she’s [got] no credibility as a political talking head.”
The critics were particularly incensed by Ms. McCain’s statement that President Biden’s Build Back Better agenda is “cratering in the polls,” citing surveys showing that majorities support key elements of the plan such as paid medical leave and tuition-free community college, and accusing her of lying.
MSNBC contributor and Washington Post columnist Jennfier Rubin tweeted “[that] is false. It is polling well. Why let her come on to lie?”
Ms. McCain swung back by pointing to President Biden’s tanking approval ratings, tweeting that “Joe Biden IS his agenda. A [president’s] polls mean something - that the American people aren’t happy with how he’s governing or his agenda.”
Of course, polling results can reflect how the questions are asked and who’s doing the asking.
Polls showing majority support for Build Back Better include those sponsored by progressive groups Invest in America/Data for Progress; the League of Conservation Voters/Climate Power, and Navigator, a project led by pollsters from the Global Strategy Group with an advisory committee that includes representatives from the AFL-CIO, Emily’s List, and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund.
A poll from the center-right American Action Network released Sept. 7 found most of those surveyed in seven Democrat-controlled swing districts opposed the plan after being asked, “Do you approve or disapprove of the $3.5 trillion in additional proposed spending by congressional leaders like Nancy Pelosi in order to ‘Build Back Better’?”
NBC has not commented publicly on whether Ms. McCain will be a regular panelist on the program, the longest-running show on U.S. television.