Let's play Hardball (with Chris Matthews)

Chris Matthews surprised his audience one evening in March of 2020 by suddenly stepping down from hosting “Hardball” on MSNBC, the political roundtable show he’d helmed for over 20 years. Matthews, whose new book This Country: My Life in Politics and History comes out this week, joins Michael Isikoff, Daniel Klaidman and Victoria Bassetti on this episode to discuss the role of the media in politics, how the polarization of today compares to the era of Ronald Reagan and Tip O’Neill, and to talk about the moment Matthews stepped away from his program.

Plus, our hosts respond to a troubling tweet from Maggie Haberman of the New York Times about Trump’s plans to return to the White House — quicker than seems possible, under a sober reading of the U.S. Constitution.


  • Chris Matthews (@HardballChris), Author; journalist; former host of MSNBC’s “Hardball”


  • Michael Isikoff (@Isikoff), Chief Investigative Correspondent, Yahoo News
  • Daniel Klaidman (@dklaidman), Editor in Chief, Yahoo News
  • Victoria Bassetti (@VBass), fellow, Brennan Center for Justice (contributing co-host)




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