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Alyssa Farah Griffin has gone out of her way to play nice with her new colleagues at The View, but on Tuesday morning, she dipped her toe into oppositional waters when she accused her co-hosts of having a "blindspot" to the concerns of the "average American family."
During a discussion about the recent pre-midterm debates, Joy Behar cited a "depressing" poll from the New York Times that found only "7% of voters rank a threat to democracy as a major issue this election cycle" (Joy's verbiage is incorrect; the poll found that 7% identified the threat to democracy as "the most important problem facing the country.")
"If you can't put food on the table, it's very depressing. And if you can't put gas in your car, and inflation, and rents, and everything is piling up because of various reasons," said Behar. "But to think that the other party is going to be able to solve those problems is really ludicrous! The Republican Party is happy to let corporations never pay another tax for the rest of their days. They will cut social security. They're going to cut lunches for children. They are not going to help you! So why would you vote for them?"
After some discussion about the utility of debates, in the first place, Griffin responded to Behar's point about inflation. "Something that I — and I want to say this respectfully — I worry there might be a blindspot about at this table is the fact that the average American family lost $6,000 in annual wages last year due to inflation," she said. "Blame Biden or don't, but there is a reason that Tim Ryan is running in Ohio away from Biden, and away from Nancy Pelosi."
"This is a state that both times nominated Barack Obama to be president, but then flipped to Donald Trump," Griffin continued. "Workers feel like they're not getting the most out of the economy, they're falling behind, and they're Democrats."
HOW MUCH DO TELEVISED DEBATES MATTER? #TheView co-hosts weigh in on yesterday's heated debates across the country ahead of the critical midterm elections. https://t.co/cVclFZQU98 pic.twitter.com/swsq0NAZVB— The View (@TheView) October 18, 2022
Both Behar and Sunny Hostin immediately chimed in to ask what the Republican Party plans to do for these voters. "And do you think those same people understand that the little bit of money that they did get, every single Republican voted against it?" asked Hostin.
"There's a reason Democrats aren't running on the payments that they did during COVID, because it added to inflation," replied Griffin. "I wish I could give every American $2,000. But it adds to inflation and this crisis we're in!"
"It was an emergency time for us in this country!" fired back Behar, now in full debate mode. "Those people needed it!"
"I agree," said Griffin. "I supported it through the height of the pandemic, when people artificially couldn't go to work because the economy was shut down. But you can't do that forever because it actually exacerbates the problem!"
Hostin launched into a list of Biden's accomplishments — "What about hearing aids? What about lowering Medicare [premiums]?" she said — but before she could really take off, Whoopi Goldberg cut into the discussion and declared it was time for a commercial break. And just when things were starting to get good!
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Claire Spellberg Lustig is the Senior Editor at Primetimer and a scholar of The View. Follow her on Twitter at @c_spellberg.