Former MNSBC host Krystal Ball criticized her former network Thursday for pushing "conspiracy theories" about Donald Trump and Russia after special counsel Robert Mueller's disappointing testimony before Congress.
Ball, formerly the liberal host of The Cycle and now host of The Hill's Rising, asked after Wednesday's testimony, "How much damage has MSNBC in particular done to the Left?"
Ball stressed that her critique was not a personal attack on her former colleagues, many of whom she still considers friends, but complained that "nearly all of [them] got swept up in the ratings bubble that was feverish Russian conspiracy theories."
"I dare to say, some talent did drink more deeply of the Russia conspiracy waters than others," she said. "Rachel Maddow, you got some explaining to do."
Ball said that the true facts about the extent of the Trump's campaign attempts to work with Russia were "damning" on their own. "But it does not feel like a damning set of facts when for months MSNBC built segment after segment, show after show on building anticipation for a big reveal when we would learn the true depths of Trump's fealty and direct conspiracy with Putin," she complained.
She criticized MSNBC for inviting on proponents of the Russian collusion theory like Jonathan Chait and Louise Mensch, the latter of whom once "reported" that Steve Bannon would receive the death penalty for espionage. "This is not journalism, this is Infowars conspiracy," Ball said.
MSNBC, along with CNN and the Democratic Party, "set the bar unimaginably high," Ball argued, and as a result Trump's actual scandals seemed ordinary in comparison. "Now please… can we move the heck on?" she asked.