MSNBC co-anchors Stephanie Ruhle and Ali Velshi expressed revulsion and fascination on Thursday at the idea people may support President Donald Trump because it would help their pocketbooks or they agreed with his policies on guns and abortion.
Interviewing left-wing billionaire Tom Steyer, Ruhle fretted that in spite of Trump's boorishness and dishonesty, "a lot of people vote pretty selfishly."
"While we could find or do find the president's constant lying or lawlessness or reprehensible behavior morally unacceptable, a lot of people vote pretty selfishly, and they say, ‘What's going to give me more money in my pockets?'" Ruhle said to Steyer, who has long sought Trump's impeachment.
"Or what's going to make abortion illegal or what's going to make sure that my Second Amendment rights stay the same, and clearly, that adds up to enough people that the president still has something akin to 40 percent of the electorate in polls," Velshi said. "It's kind of fascinating to us, as I'm sure it is to you, but how do we talk about that?"
Steyer pointed to, in spite of the economy showing positive signs, the decrease of purchasing power because of inflation outpacing wage growth over the past year.
"For about 80 percent of Americans, this isn't working at all. Things are actually worse," Steyer said.
Ruhle noted consumer confidence and small and large business sentiments are all up, to which Steyer responded there had been a "corporate takeover" of the democracy.
Velshi curiously introduced Steyer by saying Democrats are "finally" getting their "own version of the Koch Brothers," referring to the libertarian billionaires.
Steyer is planning to spend more than $110 million in 2018 to help elect Democrats but he's hardly new on the political scene. He gave more than $70 million to Democratic efforts during the 2014 cycle and more than $90 million in 2016.
Velshi and Ruhle frequently pepper their coverage with partisan commentary. Velshi recently told a progressive gubernatorial candidate that she was "preaching to the choir" as she outlined her progressive policy platform.