Your Montana Public Radio
Thu February 27, 2014
Schweitzer: MSNBC contract has nothing to do with Presidential ambitions
Former Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer will be hitting the airwaves of MSNBC as a political contributor, and he’ll be doing so from the comfort of his home on Georgetown Lake. Schweitzer said that was part of the reason he chose to sign with MSNBC.
“Some of the other networks require you to fly to New York or Washington D.C. and do work in the studio and I really don’t like being out of Montana that much,” Schweitzer said.
Since leaving office at the beginning of last year, Schweitzer has regularly appeared on networks like ABC, CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC.
But MSNBC, they offered to set up a studio in his Montana lake house.
“(if) They have a show, they can call me an hour in advance. I can turn the camera on myself, I don’t need any crew,” he said. “I can participate in a discussion or debate and when I’m done I can turn it off and go out and plow snow or fix a tractor.”
He’ll be appearing on MSNBC or NBC programs once or twice a week, speaking on topics he’s passionate about like healthcare and energy. He’s previously faulted MSNBC and Fox for being what he calls “hair on fire” networks, with commentators way to the left or way to the right of the political center.
Schweitzer says this new deal will not change his stripes, which he says run right down the middle of main stream America.
“Look I don’t believe Democrats always have it right and I don’t believe Republicans always have it wrong. Wherever the good ideas come from, I’m ready to embrace them,” he said.
Schweitzer has been making appearances in battle-ground election states in the last year and political insiders believe he is preparing for a 2016 Presidential campaign. But, he denies this gig with MSNBC has anything to do with potential future ambitions.
“This is an opportunity for me to continue to advocate for policies that I’m passionate about and it really doesn’t have to do with any elected office,” he said.
Montana’s Stillwater Mining Company elected Schweitzer Chairman of the board last May. Schweitzer said this job with MSNBC will not conflict with those duties.
“If there was any discussion that had anything to do with hard rock mining or silver, gold, platinum, palladium, I’d probably decline being involved in those conversations,” he said.
He said this initial contract with MSNBC will last a year or more.