Morning Joe Hosts, Chuck Todd Speak Out Against NBC News Hiring Ronna McDaniel

By Mark Mwachiro 

Screenshot of MSNBC hosts

NBC News’ addition of former Republican National Committee chair Ronna McDaniel as a political analyst is not being well received by many within its rank and file, especially its on-air hosts, who have used their position to voice their displeasure.

Within the last 36 hours, Chuck Todd and the Morning Joe hosts, Joe Scarborough and Mika Brezinski, have criticized the network for bringing McDaniel into the fold.

On Monday’s edition of Morning Joe, Scarborough said, “We learned about the hiring when we read about it in the press on Friday. We weren’t asked our opinion of the hiring, but if we were, we would have strongly objected to it.”


Brezinski echoed that sentiment.

“NBC News should seek out conservative, Republican voices to provide balance,” Brezinski said. “But… not a person who used her position of power to be an anti-democracy election denier. And we hope NBC will reconsider its decision.”

Meanwhile, after Kristen Welker‘s tense interview with McDaniel on Sunday’s Meet the Press, Todd had some stern words for the network’s handling of the situation, saying, “There’s a reason why there are a lot of journalists at NBC News uncomfortable with this because many of our professional dealings with the RNC over the last six years have been met with gaslighting, have been met with character assassination.”

Todd added that the hiring raises the question, “What does she bring NBC News?”

Welker’s interview with McDaniel had been planned before the network hired her, and Todd acknowledged the awkwardness.

“Our bosses owe you an apology for putting you in this situation,” he told Welker.

NBC News declined to comment when asked about the pushback to the hire from on-air personalities.

However, when the network announced McDaniel’s hiring, a source familiar with the matter noted that the network looks to bring audiences informed reporting that reflects perspectives across the political spectrum, and McDaniel’s role represents an ongoing commitment to featuring a variety of voices to offer firsthand insights.

Though The Wall Street Journal reported that MSNBC president Rashida Jones said internally that McDaniel would not appear on the network, a source familiar with the matter noted that each show has an independent editorial policy and can decide whether they want McDaniel on.

Additionally, the source noted that each network leader unanimously supported the hiring of McDaniel.