You get a flavor of Howley's personality in an interview he gave to his irascible colleague Betsy Rothstein back in January. In the interview, Howley described how he met his girlfriend.
“I met her at the Heritage Foundation Christmas party. She was wearing a purple dress and looked hot standing next to Grover Norquist, if only by comparison. She had a boyfriend at that time, but I was like ’Whatever.’ Then we saw each other at a New Year’s party where she was wearing a black dress and I was a little high. She looked hot there too, even though Grover wasn’t there, which is really the litmus test. Her boyfriend was there, but I don’t adhere to UN regulations. Also, there was a Facebook photo of her sitting on the floor of her apartment with black high heels that drove me crazy.”
Only a few weeks ago, he offered up a widely mocked piece on the "5 guys who hit on your girlfriend at CPAC in front of you."
As the title of the piece promised, Howley tried his best to satirize the "[g]uy who hit on your girlfriend at CPAC in front of you" and "[t]he old guy who can help her career," among others. He closed with the type of advice you'd expect from a guy who bragged about hitting on someone who has a boyfriend.
Ultimately, guys, just remember: paranoia is poison in any relationship. Learn to have some trust, and these sweaty dudes won’t faze you. But if you’re nervous about it, just take a few steps away from her and flirt with a young woman or two in a visible spot while not looking back at your girlfriend. You know, like Machiavelli would. Or Nixon.
Earlier this month, Howley mocked "noted fancy lad" Chris Hayes for a tweet on April 11, 2007, when the current MSNBC host said he was "quietly crying" into his sweater.
Was Hayes joking? Was he mourning the loss of author Kurt Vonnegut, who died that day? It doesn't matter. Only fancy lads cry into their sweaters.
A month ago, a Howley-authored piece under the headline "GOP to Howley: Stop masturbating to lesbian Ellen Page" was removed by The Daily Caller after the actress came out of the closet.
In January, Howley ridiculed "Saturday Night Live" producer Lorne Michaels for doing "his duty to progressive America" and hiring "an unfunny black woman." Clearly well-versed in the world of comedy, Howley repeatedly called the new cast member, Sasheer Zamata, "unfunny."
But Howley outdid himself with two pieces that were published within a month of each other at the end of last year.
During November's push to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which would have prohibited certain businesses from making employment decisions predicated on someone's sexual orientation or gender identity, Howley wrote that gay people "have become totally boring."
The effort, he wrote, brought "all the familiar annoying characters" to "come out of the tastefully-refurbished woodwork."
This all encourages the average beer-drinker to see gays as nothing more than loathsome liberal operatives who should be tolerated only because they’re not sure what’s in that new hate-crimes bill and nobody wants to end up with Jonathan Capehart presiding over their lethal injection. Now, let me be clear. I love the gays. I have gay friends, gay mentors, gay acquaintances and associates. In fact, many people even assume that I am gay. Particularly women I’ve slept with. Also old men. A lot of old men. I mean, seriously, if balding, beady-eyed middle-aged men in sweaters were hot chicks, I’d be Ashton Kutcher. I’m practically on the cover of their magazines. I can’t even walk around DuPont Circle on early autumn evenings or interact with male bank tellers without getting eyed down like a side of ribs. It’s not even flattering. I know why it happens. I only get it because I’m skinny and I look like I’d be a bottom. It’s demeaning, really.
A month later, Howley lamented that liberals "want to stop men from checking out women." Howley somehow concluded from a study on the "objectifying gaze" that the left would never allow him to gawk at a woman again.
This is the kind of study MSNBC commentators can hold up when they’re talking about “rape culture.” Because men are just all Bashar al-Assad and sex is their chemical weapon. Fifty-one percent of the U.S. population is a victimized group now. Don’t you know? Women are like Indians now. You can’t give them a once-over, a polite grin, and be on your way. You can’t notice the fruits of their several-hour morning project of preparing themselves to be looked at. Pretty soon, looking at a woman’s chest will legally be a “hate” crime instead of a love crime.
On Wednesday, Howley was at it again, tweeting degrading comments about Buzzfeed's Rosie Gray before deleting the content and his account, and being forced to apologize to her.
Howley has not responded to TPM's request for comment.
This post has been updated.