Rachel Maddow breaks down while describing 'tender age' shelters for immigrant babies

Jun 22, 2018
06:08 P.M.
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MSNBC host Rachel Maddow was unable to hold back tears and breaks down on the air when reporting breaking news about immigrant babies being held in ‘tender age’ shelters.


The Guardian News uploaded the video on YouTube that shows Maddow repeatedly tried to read a description of the shelters in Texas on June 19, 2018.

At first, it was just like any other day at work for MSNBC host Rachel Maddow. She received the breaking news report while on the air and began reading it.

Revealing that the Associated Press had reported something “incredible.” She began reading it, but paused, swallowing.

“This is incredible. Trump administration officials have been sending babies and other young children…,” her voice trailed off. Maddow covered her mouth and tried to keep going, “…to at least three…”


The newsreader stopped again, tearing up. She asked those behind the camera to put up the graphics of the report but was told it was not available.

She tried again to continue talking about the tender age shelters in South Texas. However, she stopped again and decided that she could not continue reading the news.

Maddow said she was going to “hand this off.” She apologized and said she was ending the segment early and handed the show over to host Lawrence O’Donnell.


She took to social media, tweeting an apology for breaking down. She wrote, ‘Ugh, I’m sorry. If nothing else, it is my job to actually be able to speak while I’m on TV.’

The 45-year-old host explained that she was unable to read the story and shared a link to the article by Associated Press.

It was reported that at least three ‘tender age’ shelters in South Texas had been housing children, some as young as babies. Quoting lawyers and medical providers, the story described ‘playrooms of crying preschool-age children in crisis.’


It also quoted Steven Wagner, a Department of Health and Human Services official, stating that the ‘specialized facilities’ devoted to providing care to children with special needs and tender age children ‘as we define as under 13 would fall into that category.’

The Customs and Border Protection has always defined it as five and below.

Maddow ended her series of tweets with an apology for not being professional on the air. She assured that that was not the way she intended to go. 

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