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Chris Matthews On The C-Street House: Are You Sure This Isn't Like Me Staying At The Y, It's Cheap?

Chris Matthews carries water for the C-Street house members and asks Jeff Sharlet if some of them are living there because they just want a cheap plac

Chris Matthews carries water for the C-Street house members and asks Jeff Sharlet if some of them are living there because they just want a cheap place to stay. This is after having Jeff Sharlet fully explain to him what type of activities are going on there.

Matthews also seems to think that he has "outed" these members. Not hardly Chris. You're only almost a month and a mound of interviews behind your co-worker Rachel Maddow with your interview of Jeff Sharlet. Matthews appears to be a whole lot more worried about the reaction he's going to get from the Congress members for this interview than reporting the truth about them.

Matthews just can't seem to wrap his brain around the idea that Irish Catholics or Jews might be staying at the C-Street House as well and that not all of them are "fundamentalists".

Matthews: Let me ask you about what's wrong here. So what? My favorite question. So what if a bunch of these guys go to prayer breakfast and all live together. I see some guys here like Irish Catholic Mike Doyle, Bart Stupak, he's not a fundamentalist. I know what Zach Wamp is. John Ensign, you mentioned him, Tom Coburn is probably a fundamentalist. What, people have their own religion, they go to prayer breakfast, I don't know that culture very well, but what's so harmful about it?

Sharlet: Absolutely nothing going to a prayer group or you want to pray with some folks, you want to get support. The issue is when you have an organization that is not registered like a lobby that's acting like a lobby...


Matthews: But here's what I don't get. Is this a religious group? So why does it include Catholics and Protestants, and apparently Eric Cantor's been over there. He's Jewish. So how does that all fit together if they have a religious doctrine that doesn't seem like they share one belief?

Sharlet: Doug Coe teaches that the person of Jesus transcends all this. He says Jews, Muslims, love Jesus. That's what allowed him to forge alliances with dictators like Suharto and Siad Barre in Somalia. Catholics, the Family has historically been extremely anti-Catholic. Doug Coe has said things like he hates...

Matthews: What's Doyle doing there? And Stupak? What are they doing there?

Sharlet: I think they are attracted to the same god that Ensign worships, which is the god of American power. These guys like the access. They like the influence....

Matthews: Why is some working class Irish from Pittsburgh, why do you put him into the leadership clack?

Sharlet: He's not in the leadership clack. The Family, look, Sen. Coburn in fact told James Dobson's magazine, Citizens, several years ago that he went out looking for some Democrats. The Family's always been about eighty, ninety percent Republican.

Matthews: Are you sure this isn't like me staying at the Y, it's cheap?

Sharlet: I don't know what you do at the Y Chris but...

Matthews: I've stayed at the Y. It used to be six bucks a night in D.C., okay. That's one reason you stay there.

Sharlet: Yeah, um, when you're at the Y do you try and persuade arms deal with Suharto. Do you set up...

Matthews: No, you don't do anything. No. No. What I'm asking...

Sharlet: ....foreign policy meetings with....

Matthews: ...aren't some of these people just looking for a cheap place to stay?

Sharlet: Maybe Mike Doyle is, but then why are they being dishonest about it? Congressman Bart Stupak, one of the conservative Democrats involved, been there for seven years, getting subsidized rent in 2002 told the LA Times we don't talk to the press about it and yet now he says he doesn't know what's going on there. Why does Zach Wamp, Congressman from Tennessee say this...

Matthews: What's the reaction to this question? What's the reaction of these members of Congress when you've outed them and shown they're all part of this cell?

Sharlet: You know, I've been reporting on this for several years for Harper's Magazine, for Rolling Stone, never had a fact corrected..uh...

Matthews: Well, I'll hear from them...

Sharlet: Right...

Matthews: I can tell you that. Thank you for coming on Jeff because I can guarantee I'm going to hear from each one of these Congressional people I've mentioned here who want to know why I outed them as members of some religious cult, when they'll tell me it's just a cheap place to stay, I'm sure. Anyway, thank you.

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