CNN analyst seethes over congressmen taking 'Instagram trip' to Kabul, wants them removed from committees

Media top headlines August 25

In media news today, an NBC report blasts Biden’s ‘humiliating’ Afghanistan withdrawal, Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin gets accused of ‘running PR for the Taliban,’ and Andrew Cuomo gets stripped of his Emmy amid sexual harassment scandal

CNN analyst Philip Mudd lost it Wednesday while discussing Rep. Peter Meijer’s, R-Mich., and Rep. Seth Moulton’s, D-Mass., unannounced trip to Afghanistan this week amid the ongoing efforts to evacuate Americans and others from Afghanistan. 

Appearing on “New Day,” Mudd grew heated as he discussed the two congressmen, describing their surprise visit as “reprehensible,” and suggesting it was actually an “Instagram trip” meant to provide “eye candy” for their constituents.

“Reprehensible. Sharply criticize is too polite,” Mudd said after host John Berman asked for his view on the trip.

“The President of the United States, who is responsible first and foremost for American national security, said the situation is so dangerous that the U.S. military can’t stay on,” he added. “So two members of Congress, without the support of their leadership, decide that they’re going to bypass Disneyland and take an Instagram trip to Afghanistan because they want some eye candy for a bunch of constituents.”

The two lawmakers, who are veterans, said in a joint statement after returning that the U.S. wouldn’t evacuate its people by the Aug. 31 deadline because it started too late.

Mudd said that if he were Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., he would see the situation as a chance for bipartisanship by removing the bipartisan pair from committee assignments.

Both congressmen were sharply criticized by Pelosi following the public revelation of the trip, who said the situation was “deadly serious” and that she didn’t want House members going to Afghanistan. McCarthy echoed Pelosi’s criticism, telling Fox’s “America’s Newsroom” that, while he understood the frustration of the two members, he didn’t condone their trip.

“And by the way, ask them for the two seats they took out. For all their concerns about refugees, what happens to the two refugees who didn’t get those seats? What do you tell them?” Mudd said, referencing the two seats Meijer and Moulton used to fly back to the U.S. from Kabul. 

Mudd added that he could have come up with the criticisms that Meijer and Moulton had on the rollout of the evacuation from his house in Memphis. 

“Reprehensible. They ought to go from their committees,” he said.

Host Brianna Keilar suggested that Mudd’s claim the congressmen potentially took two seats from refugees might not be accurate based on both congressman saying the flight had empty seats and that they were sitting in crew seats.

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