Mika Amazed Bush Justice Department Preferred Republicans
UPDATE: The original version of this item reported Joe Scarborough's statement, as transcribed below, that there were no Republicans on his MSNBC staff, with executive producer Chris Licht confirming Joe's assertion. Joe has been in touch to say he and Chris Licht were speaking tongue in cheek and that the remarks about there being no Republicans on the Morning Joe staff were a joke.
Mika Brzezinski is appalled to learn that the Bush Justice Department had a hiring preference for politically simpatico people. And Mika apparently believes Joe mischaracterizes her as a liberal.
The jumping off point on today's Morning Joe was Mika's reading of a news item on an article in today's New York Times about an internal Justice Department report concluding that "senior aides to former Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales broke Civil Service laws by using politics to guide their hiring decisions." Scarborough saw this as SOP in Washington.
View video here.
JOE SCARBOROUGH [tongue in cheek]: Oh, that's terrible. I know the Democrats would never do that.
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: I remember that story. Oh come on. But this was, this was, overt. This was so obvious.
SCARBOROUGH: O-vert. You know what? I'm going to apply for a Justice Department job in the Obama administration. We're going to see how far big daddy gets. Won't get through the front door.
BRZEZINSKI: But that wouldn't be. OK, well, we'll go through your [resume] --
SCARBOROUGH: This happens all the time. I mean, that's what we do all the time, is. We elect leaders who put people in the Justice Department who are loyal to them. I don't like it at all. But the fact that there are studies that are showing that Republicans are more likely to hire people that are Republicans? Oh my God! Call out the National Guard. This government is out of control.
BRZEZINSKI: No, I think it was a little more specific, the problems, than that.
SCARBOROUGH: No it's not. You know, it's more specific because the New York Times studies it when Republicans are in power. When Democrats were in power, I will guarantee you nobody went through the Clinton administration's Justice Department rolls and said "how many conservatives are in there?" If they did, you could have written the same story.
BRZEZINSKI: You might want to look at the applications for Morning Joe. Questions about "why is Joe so great?" You might want to redact those.
SCARBOROUGH: OK, well, by the way: I don't think there's a single Republican on my staff. I'm a strange man in a strange land. And I am strange.
CHRIS LICHT [Morning Joe executive producer, off-camera]: That's true, actually.
SCARBOROUGH: Is that true, Chris?
LICHT: Spot on.
SCARBOROUGH: Is there a Republican on the staff?
LICHT: Nope. There's not one.
WILLIE GEIST: Yes there is.
LICHT: Bob's not a Republican.
BRZEZINSKI: Well, um,
SCARBOROUGH: They're Marxists.
BRZEZINSKI: How do you know? --
SCARBOROUGH: Well you know, the thing is --
BRZEZINSKI: You have me stamped as something that I'm -- well, whatever, OK.
SCARBOROUGH: [sarcastically] Yeah, oh, OK, I have no idea what Mika is ideologically. I'm confused. You're independent.