An MSNBC host and his guests on Thursday repeated the phrase "dumpster fire" 11 times in one segment in which they discussed an anonymous Trump administration official who penned a New York Times op-ed the prior day slamming President Donald Trump.
An anonymous "senior official in the Trump administration" wrote the op-ed, saying that they and many others in the administration are "choosing to put country first" by resisting Trump from inside the government.
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"There is a quiet resistance within the administration of people choosing to put country first," the official wrote. "But the real difference will be made by everyday citizens rising above politics, reaching across the aisle and resolving to shed the labels in favor of a single one: Americans."
MSNBC host Ari Melber and his panel discussed the op-ed and then transitioned to discuss the Trump administration more broadly, saying there is chaos and drama within the administration.
After Melber cited concerns from the op-ed, Mother Jones‘ Washington, D.C. bureau chief, David Corn, said that it is "incumbent on people who see a dumpster fire to come forward and say, ‘We have a dumpster fire.'"
Later in the segment, Melber brought on Richard Painter, a former ethics lawyer in the George W. Bush White House who ran a failed campaign for the Senate this year as a Democrat.
"Well, this is a dumpster fire. We've known that for a long time now and we've had people come forward anonymously. We've had other people come forward and put their name to it. This op-ed simply restates a lot of what we've heard before," Painter said. "We've had two books written about this administration, Fire and Fury and the [Bob] Woodward book Fear, lots of stories along these lines."
"So I don't think we need to know the identity of this person to know we have a serious problem," Painter continued. "This just reaffirms what we've known all along: this is a dumpster fire; it's a dangerous dumpster fire."
Painter released a campaign ad back in June that showed him standing in front of an actual dumpster fire, an oft-used symbol for bad news. He frequently used this symbol and discussed how others do not have the courage or the character to stand up to dumpster fires.
"Some people see a dumpster fire and do nothing but watch the spectacle," he said in the ad. "Some are too scared to face the danger, or they think it will benefit them if they just let it keep on burning."