Mika Brzezinski Scolds Scarborough for Defending Marco Rubio on Climate Change

It seems as though MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski not only wants everyone to agree with her liberal ideology but also wants to silence all opposing political views. 

Appearing on Morning Joe on Monday, May 12, the MSNBC co-host chastised Joe Scarborough for defending Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) over the issue of climate change, arguing that “In order to defend him, you had to move all the way around to Al Gore and extremism. It was a long road to defend him there. Think about that one.” [See video below.] 

Even though Scarborough agrees with Mika that man-made climate change exists, simply by defending his fellow Republican he was condemned by his liberal co-host. Scarborough argued that Republicans are “not willing to just start shutting down factories and changing the way America does things tomorrow to throw millions and millions of people out of work. I don't know. I think there's some subtlety there.”

Rather than allow for a conservative opinion to be heard, Brzezinski pounced on Scarborough and attacked Rubio’s interview with ABC’s Jonathan Karl. She told Scarborough “It took you five minutes to explain why Marco Rubio was okay in his answering. And he wasn't. It was a bad answer.” 

Earlier in the segment, Mika went even further by diminishing Rubio’s credibility by slamming the Tea Party senator: “Why are we talking about Al Gore? If it was someone more substantial, we should talk more. But it was Marco Rubio playing to the base. I suggest we move on.”

After Scarborough suggested that Rubio could be a serious 2016 candidate Mika swiped back “Well he could be if he would actually answer a question without the fear of the base.” For his part, Scarborough retorted “If he would agree with you? I think if Marco Rubio is saying everything that you agree with he’s not going to make it. He’s not going to be a significant candidate in the Republican Party. He will be kicked out.”  

See relevant transcript below. 


MSNBC

Morning Joe 

May 12, 2014

6:13 a.m. Eastern

JON MEACHAM: What I so find interesting about that whole part of the argument is exactly why it is that the base of the Republican Party seems to feel so alienated from the science? What is it in the climate, so to speak, that means -- that suggests that you can't come to a conclusion that human activity is helping drive this and that we have to confront it? Not with a particular bill that’s on the table this second, I'm not saying you vote for this or go to hell. But what is it right now that puts the scientific community so far beyond the pale for Republicans? 

JOE SCARBOROUGH; Jon, I don't think it's science. In fact I know it's not science any more than Democrats like Paul Krugman are repulsed by math, simple math. They don't understand it. They reject it on trying to save Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid for Americans years to come. But on this issue, I think speaking of televangelists, I think the far left overplayed their hand back in '02, '03, '04, ‘05. Al Gore overplayed his hand. You can look at polls. Don't listen to me. Look at the polling Numbers from 2004, 2005, 2006. Americans were actually bought in to the concept of climate change and that we needed to move aggressively on it. Since that time, since the overreach, since there were the climate versions of the Salem Witch Trials where if you didn't believe in the most extreme view, that you were anti-scientist. Not only did Republicans wander away from the issue, but check the polling. Most Americans began wandering away from the issue. They overplayed it. 

MEACHAM: But would you argue that what Rubio was saying is a rational response? 

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: It’s just not. 

MEACHAM: I would argue that that’s overreach. 

BRZEZINSKI: Why do Republicans feel like they need to have that? That's an overreach as well. Obviously playing to the base and not reality. 

SCARBOROUGH: First of all, we talk about Republicans, Republicans. We’ll let Marco's words stand on their own. 

BRZEZINSKI: Candidates.

SCARBOROUGH: I think Marco’s, I think a lot of Republicans might agree with Marco, reflexively going against this sort of extremism Willie I was talking about before. But I would guess if, I don't know. I haven't seen polls on this, but certainly most of the Republicans I talk to, Willie, believe there is climate change. They are smart enough to believe that 7 billion, 8 billion people have had a huge impact on it. Especially what's happening in China. China's the number one producer of damage to the environment now. But they're not willing to just start shutting down factories and changing the way America does things tomorrow to throw millions and millions of people out of work. I don't know. I think there's some subtlety there. 

WILLIE GEIST: You get the sense that, yes, Republicans who disagree with this point of view do disagree but they also resent being hit over the head with it for a decade and saying fall in line or else. 

SCARBOROUGH: You're anti-science. Agree with Al Gore or you're anti-science. 

GEIST: It doesn’t mean they’re right but you get that idea that now this is sort of a reaction to that reaction from Al Gore. The other thing is, if you look at polls where climate change falls in terms of people's concerns. For all the attention it get in the media, and believe me it is important in the long-term, voters just don't really care about it. When they go to a poll, they're not voting based on climate change. So that's not going to hurt Marco Rubio very much. Especially when you see that poll that only 25% of Republicans in particular say in a primary view climate change as a big problem and view it as manmade. That position he took, while it may be offensive to a lot of people,  is not going to hurt him in a primary. 

HAROLD FORD JR: The only thing I would argue in favor of Al Gore, Al Gore but for some of his comments and things he did. We wouldn't have I think the hybrid industry we have and the car industry would not have the mileage increase standards. It’s important to remember the number one emitter of carbon in our environment is farming in the country. So I would give him a little more credit although I do agree with you Joe he did overreach a bit. 

SCARBOROUGH: I'm not bashing Al Gore here. Listen, he -- and I’ve said this to him. He was a televangelist for climate change. And I think there have to be those people that are out there that are pushing hard and go as hard as they can go in one direction or another and I'm really glad he did it and he drew a lot of attention to that. I personally believe he did overreach and a lot of other people overreach. 

BRZEZINSKI: But that reporter didn’t overreach in his questioning. Why are we talking about Al Gore? If it was someone more substantial, we should talk more. But it was Marco Rubio playing to the base. I suggest we move on. What do you think? 

SCARBOROUGH: Well, I disagree. I think Marco Rubio could be very significant in 2016.

BRZEZINSKI: Well he could be if he would actually answer a question without the fear of the base.

SCARBOROUGH: If he would agree with you? I think if Marco Rubio is saying everything that you agree with he’s not going to make it. He’s not going to be a significant candidate in the Republican Party. He will be kicked out. 

BRZEZINSKI: Well, in order to defend him, you had to move all the way around to Al Gore and extremism. It was a long road to defend him there. Think about that one. 

SCARBOROUGH: Actually, no I was just trying to explain–  

BRZEZINSKI: It took you five minutes to explain why Marco Rubio was okay in his answering. And he wasn't. It was a bad answer. It was a totally normal question. 

SCARBOROUGH: Let me do it in five seconds. A lot of us believe the left have overreached of this issue and we're not going to throw people out of work  because of their ideological rampages. 

MEACHAM: You would agree that it's not an irrational response from what you hear from Rubio to say that Republicans are now overreaching the other way. 

BRZEZINSKI: Yeah. Including himself. 

SCARBOROUGH: You can say that if that's how you feel about Marco Rubio, I'm a Republican, I believe in climate change. I believe that it's manmade. I believe that man has contributed to climate change. But Marco is right. It goes in cycles. And we'll see how those cycles play out. We're so arrogant as a people that if it happened to us last week, then it is, this is the worst thing that's happened on the face of the Earth. It’s like those women that everybody knows that have a baby and they run around with a baby. And you would swear to God that they were the first women on the Earth to have a baby. They're not. They're not. We're not the -- 

FORD JR: I resemble that as a dad. 

SCARBOROUGH: We're not the first people that have had climate change. Now am I concerned because it's a little more extreme than it’s been in the past? Yes. But it's also been extreme in the past. We got to play it out and see what happens but I think we need to be careful. You're looking at a guy that's been talking about wanting to have CAFE standards to 40 miles per gallon. I've got no problem. Let's be careful, let’s do everything we can do. I want a clean Earth. You know what? Industry can adapt to it. But I'll be damned if I'm going to throw millions of people out of work because somebody's going on an ideological tear. 

BRZEZINSKI: That’s a good answer but no one was. It was just a question that he didn't answer very well. But you do a good job with the question. 

SCARBOROUGH: He didn't do it the way you liked it. 

Jeffrey Meyer
Jeffrey Meyer
Jeffrey Meyer is a News Analyst at the Media Research Center.