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"Pimping Out Chelsea" Remark Gets Reaction

The misogynists among the Clinton-bashers are letting their guards down. The current dust-up is over this distasteful remark by MSNBC's David Shuster (off-camera) made last night while he was chatting with his guest, Bill Press:

Here's the outcome:


David Shuster [pictured at left] has been temporarily suspended from NBC news broadcast and will reportedly apologize this evening on air for the remark he made Thursday evening on MSNBC.

His guest, radio talk show host Bill Press, immediately defended the former first daughter, saying she wouldn't be campaigning if she didn't want to. "Give Chelsea a break."

Today, the Clinton camp threatened to boycott the cable network. And this afternoon, EMILY's List, which raises money for female candidates, weighed in.

"I'm sending this letter today to let you know that the misogynistic pattern in the reporting by your network must come to an end," Ellen Malcolm, the group's president, wrote to MSNBC News Senior Vice President Phil Griffin. "I know I speak for millions across this country when I demand that you take immediate steps and publicly tell us what you will do to eliminate this sexist and demeaning culture that has become so pervasive in your network.

Malcolm mentioned that Chris Matthews, host of "Hardball" on MSNBC, recently apologized to the former first lady after suggesting her political career had been made possible by her husband's philandering.

"Your tolerance for this behavior speaks volumes about the corporate culture of MSNBC," Malcolm continued. "If you refuse to take action, women across the country, viewers, sponsors, and consumers can only assume your implicit endorsement of this type of sexist commentary on women and repugnant treatment of our children."

My guess is that Shuster didn't offer the same kind of "analysis" regarding Romney's sons...

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Rating: 2.6/5 (5 votes cast)

Comments (11)

Steve Crickmore:

Distatesful comment yes, but what do you think ...is it a boycotting offence?

In a conference call with reporters, Clinton communications director Howard Wolfson Friday excoriated MSNBC's David Shuster for suggesting the Clinton campaign had "pimped out" 27-year old Chelsea by having her place phone calls to Democratic Party superdelegates on her mother's behalf. Wolfson called the comment "beneath contempt" and disgusting.

"I, at this point, can't envision a scenario where we would continue to engage in debates on that network," he added.

If they withdraw, it sort of undercuts their argument and your's, that Obama should debate on Fox, doesn't it?


i'm not going to comment much on the chelsea clip. i don't have sound today. but, if the comment really was something to the effect of "pimping out chelsea" then i would find that mildly distasteful, but hardly endemic of a cultural of a misogynistic network.

given the clinton's history, i can see how some people could come to that conclusion.

in regards to the chris matthew's comment, there is some validity to it as well.

should we not speak the truth if it is distasteful to others? isn't truth more important than being politically correct?

Lee Ward:

I don't recall any debates at MSNBC that the Clinton's would "withdraw from" or turn down, Steve.

And until Obama accepts or declines the debate on Fox, and until Clinton accepts or declines a debate on MSNBC, it's moot.

So far, to my knowledge, Obama has not accepted the Fox debate, and so far to my knowledge Clinton has not declined an MSNBC debate, so no -- nothing that has happened here undercuts my theory that Obama will refuse the Fox debate.

Also, I believe that the quote you provided above was before MSNBC suspended Shuster and MSNBC's apologies were offered -- not that the facts should have any bearing on the matter.


If they withdraw, it sort of undercuts their argument and your's, that Obama should debate on Fox, doesn't it?

so far to my knowledge Clinton has not declined an MSNBC debate, so no -- nothing that has happened here undercuts my theory that Obama will refuse the Fox debate.

He asked if, Lee. If. Reading is hard, isn't it?

Lee Ward:

And appreantly there is an MSNBC debate on the schedule, and Clinton has not turned it down, yet.

Clinton and Obama are scheduled to participate in an MSNBC debate Feb. 26 from Ohio, which holds its primary March 4. The Clinton campaign has pushed hard for as many debates as possible with Obama, but Wolfson said the Feb. 26 debate could be jeopardized.

"Could be" - we'll see. Any word from Obama on the Fox debate?

I didn't think so...


i find the refusal of some candidates to debate on the highest rated news network because they are afraid to be childish.

of course, i think that most of the debates that happened this year were handled poorly anyways.


I thought that "pimping" thing was an honest, if blunt, assessment of the situation. The word is very much in the American lexicon and does not actually refer to Chelsea being a prostitute, taken in context. But then, this is politics and context apparently loses all meaning.

I thought, after 8 years growing up in the White House, and 8 years out, that she was staying the hell out of her parents' shenanigans.

Guess not.

Lee Ward:

I don't think anyone on either side of this issue really thinks it was meant literally, and it wasn't taken that way. The suggestion that young lady is figuratively being peddled or sold is offensive enough, but this is definitely an inappropriate choice of words to describe what she's doing.

She doesn't have a mind of her own?

Where's the correlation to comments made about Romney's sons? I don't recall national television referring to them being 'pimped.'

When male children help their parent campaign they're thought of as... what... Loyal? Supportive?

And when female children do the same they are selling themselves in a cheap fashion?

It ranks up there with the 'nappy-headed hoes' in my estimation.

So in what sense is Chelsea truly being 'pimped', BPG?

And how would you feel in your daughter was referred to that way?


I don't believe that the comment was intented as a slight against Chelsea herself - however tasteless it was. The comment was directed at Mr & Mrs Clinton predicated on the belief that the Campaign put her to speaking on her mother's behalf to rescue her troubled candidacy. Hence the use of the term 'pimping'.

Chelsea has chosen to involve herself in the campaign, and that made her fair game. She's been in the public eye for most of her life (not by her own choice) and probably has paid no mind to the brouhaha. Given her age, she probably understood exactly what was meant by the 'pimping' statement and was thussly not offended by it.

If somebody said that Mitt Romney was pimping his kids by having them work on the campaign, or any other candidate, I would interpret it the same way as I do now.

If I were the candidate and someone in the media made such a statement at my daughter, my response would be that its a truly tasteless statement to make, and regardless she volunteered to work for the campaign.

For those who didn't catch it, the comment made by Shuster was "Doesn't it seem like Chelsea is being pimped out in some weird sort of way?"

Shuster was merely trying to sound hip and modern by stating she was "being pimped out", instead of "being used for political gain".
Its not like Bill or Hillary were really trying to literally pimp out Chelsea


I don't care what generation, or what dictionary you refer to, pimp equals prositution/public woman.

When a candidate is running for office, it is their families they trust most of all.

Sexism is not acceptable, and David Shuster
should be treated just as Don Imus was.
I did see the black men come down on Don within
20 minutes like a ton of bricks. Why doesn't
the white men come down on David with a hammer.

I'm ready for Change, start today, fire David
Shuster! Vote Hillary!


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Editors: Lee Ward, Larkin, Paul S Hooson, and Steve Crickmore

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