MSNBC host Chris Hayes responded to backlash he received this week after covering the sexual assault allegation against former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenTrump endorses challenger in Michigan AG race On The Money: Democrats get to the hard part Health Care — GOP attorneys general warn of legal battle over Biden's vaccine mandate MORE, which resulted in "#FireChrisHayes" trending on Twitter.
"A lot of people were unhappy with the fact we covered the story, which is why you may have seen the hashtag 'FireChrisHayes' trending on Twitter yesterday. Needless to say, I received a lot of feedback about the segment, which basically fell into three categories," the "All In" host explained on his show Friday.
Hayes had focused a segment of his show Wednesday night on the allegation from Tara Reade, a former Senate aide who alleged in March that Biden sexually assaulted her in 1993. Hayes was the first prime-time host on the network to address the allegations on his show, citing information collected by a New York Times investigation.
“The first category were people who basically said, 'I don’t believe Tara Reade. I believe Joe Biden,'" Hayes explained on his show.
He called the second group of critics the "'I don’t care' category," saying it consisted of Democrats who see unseating President TrumpDonald TrumpOhio Republican who voted to impeach Trump says he won't seek reelection Youngkin breaks with Trump on whether Democrats will cheat in the Virginia governor's race Trump endorses challenger in Michigan AG race MORE as an urgent priority.
"And then the third category, which I got a lot of, that was the most disquieting to me," Hayes said. "A whole lot of people pointing to various aspects of Reade’s character or her writings or her politics as a kind of proof that she’s not credible, she’s making it up."
Hayes said some viewers pointed to Reade's political positions, including the fact that she supported former Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersBriahna Joy Gray: Push toward major social spending amid pandemic was 'short-lived' Sanders 'disappointed' in House panel's vote on drug prices Manchin keeps Washington guessing on what he wants MORE (I-Vt.), and previous positive comments she made about Biden.
“These are the things that have been used forever against women making these types of allegations,” Hayes said. “To me, the lesson of the 'Me Too' movement is not that you believe every allegation. Of course not, no.
“The lesson is to take allegations seriously, to swiftly investigate the facts surrounding them as best as one can while leaving aside the worst, age-old instincts to drag the women who make those claims through the mud,” he added.