Bill Maher guest Andrew Sullivan rips MSNBC in dust-up with Ari Melber

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By Dan Sears

Conservative commentator Andrew Sullivan got into a heated debate with MSNBC host Ari Melber on HBO’s “Real TIme with Bill Maher” when the scribe claimed that the left-leaning network pushes “propaganda all the time.”

The show’s host Bill Maher played referee between his two guests on Friday night, as Sullivan argued that America’s political divisions were caused by Democrats becoming increasingly leftist in recent years in response to Donald Trump’s presidency.

“When you lose that core legitimacy, you lose democracy, that’s where we are really going to lose our democracy, because we don’t believe in it anymore,” Sullivan argued, adding that when that happens you lose faith in institutions and want a “strongman” as president.

Melber interrupted Sullivan, noting: “I think you make fair points, but you sound a little bit both sides-y.”

Although he admitted that there are problems with the Democratic Party’s “overreaction to Trump,” he argued that there wasn’t a “violent response” when responding to the controversial court case that handed George W. Bush the presidency in 2000.

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Ari Melber and Andrew Sullivan battle on HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher
Ari Melber (left) got into a heated exchange with Andrew Sullivan (right) after the commentator called MSNBC “propaganda.” HBO

At the time, the Supreme Court ended a Florida vote recount in the presidential election, which saw Bush defeat Al Gore, who certified the decision later.

By contrast, Melber cited the violent January 6 attack on the Capitol, after Trump questioned the legitimacy of his loss to Joe Biden, adding that there’s “decay” in both the Republican and Democratic Parties.

Sullivan shot back: “You know what would be good at MSNBC, is if you actually did think about both sides and weigh the arguments and make constructive arguments against that side while respecting them.”

“You don’t do that,” he said. “It’s propaganda all the time!”

Bill Maher
“Real Time” host Bill Maher interrupted the back and forth between his two guests on Friday night’s show before things got ugly. HBO

“What you just said described my show,” said Melber. “I had Trump’s lawyer on this week. I’ve had Steve Bannon on my show. I’ve had Trump White House officials.”

“I watch MSNBC,” Sullivan shot back, before getting cut off by the MSNC host.

“You describing the goal that I’m achieving, I take that as a compliment,” Melber said, of his weekday 6 pm show, “The Beat with Ari Melber.”

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Before things got too heated, Maher interrupted the two men.

“Let’s be nice!,” Maher said, laughing. “This is the first show of the year, let’s not tear each other’s face off.”

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