MSNBC may be the “Place for Politics,” but it’s apparently no place for Donald Trump since making his controversial comments about abortion during his last town hall with the network’s Chris Matthews.
The GOP frontrunner is noticeably missing from this afternoon’s MSNBC announcement it will counter-program CNN’s Democratic debate on Thursday night with a night of GOP candidate town halls. All this as the presidential candidates wind up for next week’s New York primary. We hear the invitation to appear was extended to all three remaining GOP candidates.
Just a couple weeks ago, Trump had handed MSNBC a big ratings win with his controversial abortion punishment statement; the cable news network bagged a primetime win in the key news demo that night. The biggest headline, by far, was Trump telling Chris Matthews that, should abortion be banned, any woman who had the procedure should suffer “some form of punishment.” Matthews’ riveting town hall with Trump was part of a full MSNBC night of town halls and interviews with four of the five remaining presidential candidates from both parties. The other participants, John Kasich, Hillary Clinton, and Bernie Sanders, spent a goodish chunk of their on-air time reacting to Trump’s headline-grabbing statement.
Only Ted Cruz had declined to sit down with MSNBC that day. This Thursday, however, the Texas Senator will sit down at 8 PM with Chuck Todd and upstate voters in Buffalo, NY. One hour earlier, Ohio Gov. John Kasich sits down with Chris Matthews for a town hall with Long Islanders in Jericho, NY.
Trump had spent a lot of time reacting to his abortion comment too at that last MSNBC town hall; first with a clarification, and then with a full 180, saying doctors who performed the procedure should undergo some form of punishment if abortion is outlawed, not women who have the procedure. That, and other missteps, as well as his loss in the Wisconsin primary, all led to Trump last weekend giving all the Sunday Beltway shows a pass for the first time in months.