Politics

Ali Velshi Tells Vermont Democrat ‘You’re Preaching to the Converted’ With Progressive Platforms

MSNBC host: 'I'm Canadian ... I think of these as normal platforms, not progressive'

MSNBC anchor Ali Velshi told Vermont's Democratic nominee for governor on Wednesday he found her avowedly left-wing platforms "normal" and she was "preaching to the converted."

Christine Hallquist appeared on Velshi's program following her history primary victory on Tuesday night; she became the first transgender, major-party candidate for governor in the country's history.

Velshi recapped her platform as "very progressive," including her calls for Internet access for all, universal primary health care, an assault weapons ban, a $15 minimum wage, and paid family leave. As Vermont is a one of the country's bluest states—one of its senators is democratic socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.)—Velshi asked Hallquist if she was finding support for those ideas.

"Yes, but I want to point out some of those issues, I don't even know why we call them progressive. To expect everybody to have health care and have a living wage, that seems like that's just something—" Hallquist started.

"You're preaching to the converted," Velshi interrupted, smiling. "I'm Canadian, so I'm with you on that. I think of these as normal platforms, not progressive."

"Right," Hallquist said. "There you go."

Velshi has not troubled to hide his leanings before, however, attacking the National Rifle Association, touting net neutrality, and defending Planned Parenthood on his ostensibly straight news program. He's also touted universal health care in the United States.

Hallquist will face Gov. Phil Scott (R.) in November's election.