Bret Stephens + Sean Hannity + 'Welfare Queen' + MSNBC = Me Jumping Off a Cliff

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This morning, Bret Stephens, the New York Times opinion columnist who believes that climate change isn’t real and that anyone who isn’t a white man is a self-victimizing liar, appeared on MSNBC to discuss the Guardian’s recent report about Sean Hannity and his formerly secret $90 million real estate holdings. (Hannity responded to the report by saying he was merely “investing my personal money in communities that badly need such investment.”) If you’ve made it this far into this blog, congratulations, but I’m sorry because you won’t be with us much longer.


The man of a million “imaginary enemies” joined Stephanie Ruhle to deliver his take on the Hannity debacle, where he fired off a real zinger at the Fox News host by deeming him a “welfare queen.” Sigh:

“First, I want to apologize to Sean. I once called him Fox News’s dumbest anchor. But he’s clearly the shrewdest real estate developer. I think it’s funny that Sean Hannity turns out to be a welfare queen for HUD, having taken advantage of guarantees that were put forward by none other than the Obama administration to protect investments like this.”

Oh god. Merely employing a derogatory term used to stereotype predominantly black mothers who benefitted from welfare and other social programs is bad and irresponsible enough. Chucking it at Sean Hannity, who reportedly received help from the Department of Housing and Urban Development with his real estate purchases (though he has denied this), is both gross and tasteless, which is to say, a very Bret Stephens thing to do.

Isha is a staff reporter who covers pop culture, representation in media, and your new faves.