Baltimore news became national news when the Francis Scott Key Bridge was struck by a ship and collapsed into the Patapsco River early Tuesday. The traffic and commerce implications — most of the region’s port is inaccessible — became a matter of regional and national concern.

So the Sunday morning political talk-show producers took notice and booked officials to discuss the bridge collapse. Here’s what they said on the programs:

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore on MSNBC’s ‘The Weekend’

Moore kicked off the Sunday shows, appearing on MSNBC with the collapsed bridge visible in the river behind him.

Co-host Alicia Menendez asked the governor about conspiracy theories that she said are being peddled by conservatives. The disinformation, she said, is “stupid” and “cruel” and she declined to repeat it on air.

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

“This is a remarkably complex operation, and, frankly, our entire focus and our time has been forced on that and nothing else,” said Moore, a Democrat.

Menendez also brought up Republican opposition in Congress to President Joe Biden’s pledge to pay for the entire cost of rebuilding the bridge.

Moore said members of Congress need to realize that reopening the port and rebuilding the bridge will help the national economy. He gave examples of farmers, car dealers and restaurateurs in various states who rely on goods shipped through Baltimore.

“We don’t need your favors,” Moore said. “We need you to make sure the American economy continues to grow and thrive.”

Moore also said he was working with lawmakers to support the families of the men killed when the bridge collapsed and to support port workers who are out of work. And he repeated his mantra: “Maryland Tough, Baltimore Strong.”

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

U.S. Rep. Jamie Raskin, a Democrat whose district is in the Washington suburbs, was also on the show, primarily to talk about former President Donald Trump, but he was asked about the bridge collapse, too. He expressed confidence that politicians would put their partisanship aside to ensure funding for the bridge.

“Despite what we’re hearing from some people on the MAGA fringes, we believe Congress will do the right thing,” Raskin said.

View post on Twitter

Biden adviser Tom Perez on MSNBC’s ‘The Weekend’

If there was any doubt about Biden’s pledge to “move heaven and earth” to clear the shipping channel and rebuild the bridge, his adviser Tom Perez sought to put that to rest.

Appearing in studio for MSNBC’s “The Weekend,” Perez repeated Biden’s “heaven and earth” promise at least four times.

Biden told reporters Friday that he planned to visit Baltimore “next week,” but the White House has released few details. Perez told the show hosts that “we’re still working out the finer details” of a visit. As of Sunday morning, the president’s schedule did not include a visit to Baltimore.

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Perez summarized the federal government’s involvement in the response, including the work of clearing the channel, the initial $60 million in funding and freeing up small-business aid. He also said the U.S. Department of Labor — of which he used to be the secretary — is working on how to help people without work due to the port’s partial closure, including truck drivers who are largely independent contractors.

He said immigration officials are working to ensure that families of the construction workers who were killed can travel to Baltimore to be with their loved ones and — hopefully — reclaim their bodies.

Asked how long it would take to clear the channel and get ships moving again, Perez said he couldn’t offer an answer other than that teams were working “24/7.”

“It’s not going to be overnight,” Perez said.

Moore on CNN’s ‘State of the Union’

After going on MSNBC, Moore appeared on CNN from the same location overlooking the river.

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Host Dana Bash brought up the racism directed at Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott and members of the state’s port commission who are Black.

Some politicians and candidates in other states, she noted, have blamed the bridge collapse on diversity policies, Bash noted — a way of insinuating that the mayor and commissioners are not qualified for their jobs.

Moore avoided giving a direct answer to those racist comments.

“My response is: I have no time for foolishness. I’m locked in,” the governor said, listing his goals of helping the families of people who died, supporting first responders, getting the shipping channel cleared and eventually rebuilding the bridge.

Bash pressed the governor and noted that Scott responded to racist critics.

The Baltimore Banner thanks its sponsors. Become one.

Moore repeated that he is “locked in” on the tasks ahead of him. “I frankly do not have time to deal with anything else,” he said.

Bash questioned whether the bridge needed some type of warning system for police and drivers, a question that Moore used to highlight the heroism of the officers who stopped traffic before the bridge tumbled.

“The work of these first responders — I cannot overstate this enough — they saved countless lives,” Moore said.

View post on Twitter

Moore on ‘Fox News Sunday’

Moore said his prayers go out to the families of the construction workers killed in the collapse and the first responders who have been working 24/7.

“There needs to be an ongoing investigation as to what happened,” Moore said. “I wanted that investigation to be speedy. And for anyone who needs to be held accountable to be held accountable.”

At the same time, Moore said, “We have got to get this channel opened, we have got to get commerce flowing again and we have got to rebuild the Francis Scott Key Bridge.”

The disaster has had a massive effect not only on the state but the national economy, Moore said. He said, “It really does become a national imperative that we can get the Port of Baltimore up and running again.”

View post on Twitter

U.S. Sen. Chris Van Hollen on ABC’s ‘This Week’

Van Hollen, a Democrat from Maryland, said the first priority is helping the families of the construction workers killed. He noted that the workers were immigrants who made contributions to and sacrifices for the United States.

The other priority, he said, is reopening the channel.

“This is a thriving port in Baltimore,” Van Hollen said. “We have over 15,000 people working directly for the port. Thousands of others, their livelihood depends on the port. So opening that channel is the priority.”

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, he said, will cover all the costs of clearing the channel.

Van Hollen said, “We have submitted our request for rebuilding the bridge to the Emergency Relief Program.” The federal government, he said, will pay 90% of the cost.

Next, Van Hollen said he and U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin, a Democrat from Maryland, plan to introduce legislation to cover the other 10%.

Host Martha Raddatz opened the program with news about the collapse: “This morning, some of the most powerful cranes in the country are working to clear the wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge from the Port of Baltimore.”

Secretary Buttigieg and Mayor Scott on CBS’ ‘Face the Nation’

Filling in for host Margaret Brennan, Ed O’Keefe also started “Face the Nation” by discussing the bridge collapse.

Buttigieg said he did not have an estimate of how long it will take to reopen the channel or build a new bridge. He said he expects that money for the project will be a bipartisan priority.

“The pitch is, ‘Your district could be next,’” Buttigieg said. “And also this has historically been bipartisan. And I’m not just reaching back to bygone eras.”

View post on Twitter

Meanwhile, Scott reiterated that the focus should continue to be on the construction workers who were killed and their families.

“We are, and always will be, focused on the human impact of this tragedy,” said Scott, a Democrat, who added that his office set up a fund that already has more than $300,000 in it for the families.

He said there should also be a focus on the workers and businesses affected. The Port of Baltimore, he noted, handles the most cars imported to the United States.

Later, O’Keefe asked Scott about the “downright nasty things” said about him online, including being called a “DEI mayor.” The abbreviation stands for diversity, equity and inclusion.

“I am a young Black man, a young Black mayor in this country. We know that there are a lot of racists and folks who don’t think I should be in this job,” Scott said. “I know that I’ve been Black my whole life. I know how racists and racism goes in this country.

“But my focus is always going to be on those people.”

More From The Banner