The Daily Caller‘s Matt Lewis is giving CNN and The Daily Beast/Newsweek‘s Howard Kurtz a tongue lashing after a Sunday appearance on “Reliable Sources” that has left him at odds with the host.
As with many Sundays, Lewis went on the program to discuss the week’s most intriguing media stories. This week one story happened to involve a Daily Caller colleague and infamous Obama heckler Neil Munro. As Lewis began to speak, Kurtz assumed Lewis had “talking points” and accused Lewis of simply defending his colleague. Kurtz then went a strange step further by writing a blog post insisting that Lewis didn’t actually believe what he was saying. “When the spin gets ludicrous, I can lose my usual patience,” Kurtz wrote on The Daily Download. “…When the Daily Caller’s Matt Lewis was in the studio on Sunday, I don’t think he really believed what he was saying. He was giving me talking points—absurd talking points—to defend his conservative website.”
Lewis fired back in a story late Tuesday saying that not only did he believe what he said, but that Kurtz obviously went into his own program with his mind made up on the Munro issue and wouldn’t tolerate a viewpoint other than his own. “It’s one thing to disagree with me — that’s fine — but to imply I don’t actually believe what I said is beyond the pale,” the scribe wrote.
Asked if he’ll return to “Reliable Sources” Lewis told FishbowlDC this morning that he would. He said he didn’t feel that his relationship with Kurtz would be ruined by this. “If there were ever an office environment that allowed — no, encouraged! — intellectual honesty and public displays of dissent, this would be it,” he said of The Daily Caller. “Howie and I have had a long and happy relationship, and I have every hope and expectation that will continue. I’m happy to go on the show anytime they ask. I like Howie personally, and am a fan of the show. And unlike a lot of people in the TV business, he doesn’t strike me as the kind to hold a grudge.”
Lewis threw in this olive branch: “And if it helps us mend fences, he’s welcome to stop by the Daily Caller for a beer summit, anytime!”
Kurtz has already softened toward Lewis. He told FBDC in an email, “I will absolutely have Matt Lewis back many times. He’s a smart guy, a good guest and is welcome to disagree with me anytime.”