host Chris Matthews apologized Friday for a date rape joke he made before an interview with Hillary Clinton in 2016.
In a video recorded Jan. 5, 2016, and first obtained by the Cut, Matthews is seen preparing for the interview Clinton. He asks, “Can I have some of the queen’s waters? Precious waters?” As he waits for the water, he says, “Where’s that Bill Cosby pill I brought with me?” He then laughs.
“This was a terrible comment I made in poor taste during the height of the Bill Cosby headlines,” Matthews said to the Cut. “I realize that’s no excuse. I deeply regret it and I’m sorry.”
Jennifer Palmieri, the Clinton campaign’s communication director who was present for the interview, said in a tweet Friday that watching the video of Matthews “makes me feel ill.”
As person who set up this interview and assured HRC & team I believed Chris would be fair, this makes me feel ill. Also watch the interview. As I recall he got pretty angry with her after she challenged him during foreign policy section. https://t.co/cZfJwXUBTJ
— Jennifer Palmieri (@jmpalmieri) January 12, 2018
Matthews, who has hosted MSNBC’s Hardball since 1997, has a history of making sexist remarks toward Clinton. In 2008, he apologized for saying she only became a U.S. senator and presidential candidate because “her husband messed around.”
Politico reported in December that Matthews was formally reprimanded for sexual harassment in 1999. A female producer who said he made inappropriate comments in the workplace reportedly received separation-related compensation.
H/T the Cut