With his penchant for ripping Republicans rather than Democrats, Joe Scarborough likely long ago ruined his chances of winning a Republican primary. But the Morning Joe host today jokingly acknowledged how particularly tough it would now be, after Harry Reid yesterday approvingly quoted him on the Senate floor.
Ever since Newtown, Scarborough has been waging a daily campaign for gun control, repeatedly scourging Republicans for their opposition to President Obama's proposals. Quoth Reid: "Scarborough tears into GOP filibuster on gun bill, and I quote, 'is anybody awake in my party?'" View the video after the jump.
On a day largely devoted to remembering Margaret Thatcher, one of the 20th century's greatest conservatives, would it really have been too much for Morning Joe to have had on at least one conservative guest to discuss her legacy? Apparently, yes.
Morning Joe's lineup of political guests today leaned 100% left: Jon Meacham, Al Hunt, Cokie Roberts, Sen. Tim Kaine, former Obama aides Robert Gibbs and Melody Barnes, Tony Blair, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Mayor Michael Nutter, Eugene Robinson, Maureen Orth and Joe Klein. Joe Scarborough sometimes like to boast in such circumstances that his presence more than counterbalances the liberal avalanche. But on the major political issue of the day, gun control, Scarborough was just one more voice among many ripping Republicans for their opposition to President Obama's proposals. More after the jump.
Campbell Brown appeared on today's Morning Joe to promote her campaign against violence in entertainment media. But while she made some solid suggestions, it was Joe Scarborough who took matters a quantum leap further, calling Quentin Tarantino "a pornographer of violence."
In line with her op-ed in yesterday's Wall Street Journal, Brown criticized President Obama, post Newtown, for focusing almost exclusively on gun control while largely ignoring the issue of violence in media. She encouraged him to pull a Sister Souljah/Nixon-to-China and use his extraordinary ties with Hollywood to bring pressure on media makers to deal with the extreme violence they purvey. But it was Scarborough who used the strongest language, repeatedly calling Tarantino a pornographer, accusing him of coarsening America's culture, and asking when America is going to start calling out people like him. View the video after the jump.
I find that the Washington Post's Chris Cillizza usually plays things pretty much down the middle, and subscribe to his Fix email blast.
So it came as an unpleasant surprise to find in my inbox a little while ago a Cillizza email, linking to his current Fix column, tthat referred to Mark Sanford as "the turd in the political punch bowl." Cillizza repeated the line in the column itself. View the screengrab after the jump.
I say "political integrity expert," you say "Eliot Spitzer." I say "you're kidding me, right?"
Rachel Maddow actually got off to a good start last evening in her segment on political sleaziness, ripping politicians both Dem and Republican for a variety of venal sins. But of all the people to bring on as your expert to discuss how to raise the moral bar . . . Client 9? Surely you make mirth, Ms. Maddow! View the video after the jump.
Married congressman texts pics of his private parts to other women but brazenly denies it. How would you characterize the fact that he was eventually forced to resign?
If "bum rap" springs to mind, you are on the same wavelength as Michelle Goldberg of Newsweek—and probably should seek immediate professional help. Goldberg's assertion, made on day deux of Chris Hayes's new MSNBC show, was even too much for David Axelrod. View the video after the jump.
Check out the photo of Kim Jong Un found in a CBS News article. The legend reads: "March 31, 2013 photo released by Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) and distributed in Tokyo April 1, 2013 by Korea News Service shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un giving speech during plenary meeting of central committee of ruling Workers' Party in Pyongyang, North Korea /AP." Note that the Korea News Service is the official North Korean news agency.
Yo, North Korean media dudes: your photo makes the Supreme Nork look like a dork, as if he's wearing a dunce cap! View the photo of President Obama after the jump to get an idea of how the media should properly portray a truly revered leader!
A question with a more obvious answer might yet be asked on national TV this morning, but someone's going to have to try very hard . . . On today's Morning Joe, during a segment on the Atlanta school-test scandal, Mike Barnicle actually wondered out loud why more top college grads take jobs with high-tech firms like Google, or in the financial-services sector, instead of teaching.
Barnicle had earlier declared that standardized tests don't teach kids how to think. Might Mike have taken one such test too many in his day? When Willie Geist gently pointed out the obvious to Mike—the difference in pay—Barnicle blubbered that he understood such was a given. So why ask? View the video after the jump.
That Mika Brzezinski is a dyed-in-the-wool liberal is well-known. Less publicized: the Morning Joe host is also a person of faith with traditional views on a number of subjects.
So it actually shouldn't come as a great surprise that Brzezinski sided with those criticizing Google for its choice of devoting its homepage doodle yesterday to celebrating the birthday of Cesar Chavez, rather than honoring Easter. Said Mika on today's Morning Joe: "how about a statement one day that just says: 'we screwed up'?" View the video after the jump.
Seriously: of all editorial writers at the nation's major newspapers, could the Washington Post's Jonathan Capehart be the least conversant with the Constitution? Back in August, we caught Capehart admitting to his unfamiliarity with Enumerated Powers Clause.
On today's Morning Joe, Capehart's Constitutional confusion was on display again. Discussing the Supreme Court's possible overturning of DOMA, Capehart complained that it looked like the Court was headed toward doing so not in reliance on equal protection, but on the basis of states' rights, which Capehart called "a legal technicality." Tenth Amendment much, Mr. Capehart? View the video after the jump.
According to contemporary reports, as here and here, Egyptian protesters who pelted the motorcade of then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton with tomatoes during her visit to Egypt last July were chanting "Monica! Monica!"
So who did Al Sharpton, on his MSNBC show this evening, blame for the tomato pelting? Why, Glenn Beck and Michele Bachmann, of course! According to the Reverend Al, it was the raising by Beck and Bachmann of the possible connection of Hillary's top aide, Huma Abedin, to the Muslim Brotherhood that outraged the Egyptian horde. Sharpton says "there is absolutely nothing" to back the claims of Abedin family ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. That is simply false, as this National Review item documents. View the video after the jump.
Toure Neblett prefers to go only by his first name. But henceforth, perhaps the MSNBC contributor might wish to append to his name the prefix "Young Fool"—for that is what Rush Limbaugh repeatedly called him today.
Rush was responding to Toure's characterization of Dr. Ben Carson as a token, a "black friend" used by Republicans "to assuage their guilt." Listen to the edited audio clip after the jump.
Watching "Time" editor Rana Foroohar in action on Morning Joe today, it was quickly evident how, on a range of issues from gun control to gay marriage, she toed a predictable liberal line.
But it wasn't until talk turned to health care that it became apparent just how far out Foroohar is on the left. She sang the praises of single-payer on steroids--the socialized system in the UK. Willie Geist had cited a USA Today article reporting on a non-partisan study projecting medical claim costs to rise an average of 32% under ObamaCare, and as much as 80% in Ohio. Asked if she were surprised, Foroohar said such state-to-state variations are to be expected given our "patchwork" system. She then admitted to "a little bias, because I lived and worked Europe for many years and I had two children under the national health care system in britain. I do think you get the big efficiencies in costs when you have one system that is connected." View the video after the jump.
There's been plenty of serious analysis of the the gay marriage cases before the Supreme Court. Maybe it's time for some comic relief . . .
Appearing on Al Sharpton's MSNBC show this evening, MSNBC contributor Jimmy Williams took issue with Justice Antonin Scalia's musing whether if states can't prohibit gay marriage, they can ban bestiality. Describing himself as "a certified, organic homosexual," Williams declared "I have a dog, but I've never had sex with my dog." View the video after the jump.
Showing respect for a Republican senator--a conservative one to boot? That's more than Mike Barnicle can seem to comprehend. On today's Morning Joe, when Mark Halperin mentioned that despite disagreeing with Cruz on immigration, he has "great respect" for the Republican Senator from Texas, Barnicle interrupted to ask "why do you have great respect for him?"
After Halperin explained the reasons for his respect, the most Barnicle could manage was a skeptical "okay." Republican commentator Nicolle Wallace also weighed in, ambiguously. View the video after the jump.
Don't tell us that Al Sharpton and MSNBC are hypocrites? Noooo!! The Reverend Al opened his show by praising President Obama's efforts to promote tougher gun control laws. But 28 minutes into the show, a commercial appeared for, of all things . . . Henry Repeating Rifles.
Go to Henry Rifle's website and you'll find one rifle described as "big, brutal and beautiful" and noting that it fires ammunition "said to have killed more game, big and small, and more men, good and bad, than any other in existence." Another model offered for sale, the AR-7, is based on a military rifle, Henry emphasizing that given its lightweight design "you can carry a large quantity of ammunition." Oh the horror! View the video after the jump.
On Morning Joe today, the Reverend Al Sharpton agreed with Mike Barnicle that anti-Semitism explains the opposition to Mike Bloomberg in his gun control campaign. H/t NB reader cobokat.
If ever there were an expert on anti-Semitism in America, it could be Al Sharpton, he of Freddie's Fashion Mart and Crown Heights riot infamy. The spectacle of Sharpton lamenting the supposed anti-Semitism of others was ironic, if not repulsive. Note that Dan Senor, who might also know something about anti-Semitism, being Jewish and having attended university in Israel, rejected the notion. View the video after the jump.
UPDATE: For a brilliant, clear and concise takedown of Harris-Perry's comments, have a listen to the analysis of Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr., President of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, in this podcast. The discussion comes about 8:25 in and lasts about five minutes.
. Melissa Harris-Perry is clearly a member of the "blob of cells" brigade when it comes to her disregard for unborn human life. On her MSNBC show this morning, MH-P repeatedly revealed how little respect she has for life in its early forms.
At one point, Harris-Perry callously spoke of how much it costs "to have this thing turn into a human." H/t NB reader Ray R. View the video after the jump.
Call it Michael Moore's Jesse Jackson moment . . . Jackson once famously said that when he walked down the street and heard footsteps behind him, he was relieved to turn around and find a white person behind him.
This evening, on Ed Schultz's soon-to-be-extinct weeknight MSNBC show, a histrionic Michael Moore accused white gun owners of racism . . . then proceeded to say it was reasonable for them not to be afraid of their white neighbors . . . and admitted he felt more comfortable walking down the streets of Toronto than Detroit. View the video after the jump.
Zurprise, zurprise: Zbig wouldn't go to war to stop Iran getting nukes. On Morning Joe today, Jimmy Carter's former national security adviser had some advice for President Obama: tell Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu that America will not go to war against Iran.
Attacking Iran's nuclear facilities would surely be an act of war. Yet doing so might well be the only way to prevent the ayatollahs from getting the A-bomb. Unfortunately, neither Joe Scarborough nor anyone else on the panel including daughter Mika asked Brzezinski flat out whether he would encourage America to stand by while Iran got nukes. But it's hard to intepret his words otherwise. And of course, Zbig is the man who called for the U.S. to shoot down Israeli warplanes on the way to Iran. View the video after the jump.
Does Mika Brzezinski see Barack Obama as the Messiah? Mika dismissed the notion, but Joe Scarborough had a very different point of view.
As today's Morning Joe rolled live footage of President Obama's arrival in Tel Aviv, former Bush foreign policy advisor Dan Senor couldn't help sarcastically observing "the Messiah has returned to Israel." Mika Brzezinski feigned dismissiveness, asking: "are you kidding me?" Retorted Joe Scarborough: "no, he's channeling you." View the video after the jump.
New host, same loopy logic. Ed Schultz is gone from his weekday MSNBC slot, but the show's name lives on until Chris Hayes comes on board next month. Sitting in for Schultz tonight was the never-at-a-loss-for-words Michael Eric Dyson.
Discussing Elizabeth Warren's latest Senate hearing stunt, on the minimum wage, Dyson gushed "wouldn't that be great" if the minimum wage were raised to $22 per hour? Yeah, great . . . if you'd like unemployment to soar into the stratosphere, as lower-skilled workers were priced out of the market. African-Americans would be particularly hard hit. View the video after the jump.
The scare tactics that Democrats from President Obama on down have employed to wring political benefit out of the sequester have apparently hit a despicable new low. In comments made about the deaths overnight of seven U.S. Marines in a training incident in Nevada, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Dem from Nevada, reportedly suggested that we may see more such incidents because the sequester cuts put Marines at risk.
NBC military correspondent Jim Miklaszewski, appearing on Andrea Mitchell's MSNBC show this afternoon, reported that the Marines have strongly rejected Reid's claim, and that one Marine official accused Reid of "pure political posturing on the backs of these dead Marines." View the video after the jump.
Brzezinski made that suggestion on today's Morning Joe, but Joe Scarborough sarcastically said that the reason Romney didn't pick Portman was that he didn't want to win Ohio. View the video after the jump.
Five days ago, this NewsBuster wrote that Harold Ford, Jr. "seems more interested in cultivating friends and avoiding offense than in saying anything interesting." On Morning Joe that day, Ford had managed to praise a trio of pols, even breaking out the old "my dear friend" line to describe one of them. When Ford employed the same shtick on today's show, Joe Scarborough eventually had enough, sarcastically asking Ford whether there's anyone he doesn't "like and respect."
This morning, Ford variously praised "the great Tip O'Neill," said he has "great respect" for Patty Murray, and even professed "I like Paul [Ryan] too." When Scarborough hit him with his pointed question, Ford responded by saying that he was a Christian who sees the good in all. That led to more ribbing from Scarborough and Willie Geist, who recalled a campaign ad from Harold's Tennessee days in which he posed in a church pew. View the video after the jump.
You'd think someone who works for "Fortune" magazine would have more have more respect for free people and free markets. But on Morning Joe, today, there was "Fortune" editor Leigh Gallagher boosting Michael Bloomberg's nanny state. Gallagher approvingly quoted Mayor Mike to the effect "sometimes you have to do not what people want you to do. You have to take people by the hand and lead them."
Gallagher also, incredibly, confused the ability of entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs to offer products that people, exercising their free will, find appealing with the ability of politicians to use the force of law to bend people to their whims. View the video after the jump.
Way to go out on a limb, Harold!. . . Of all the Morning Joe regulars, Harold Ford, Jr. is on my short list of those who bring the least to the table. Ford seems more interested in cultivating friends and avoiding offense than in saying anything interesting or—heaven forfend—controversial.
Ford took his penchant for finding something good to say about everyone to absurd new heights on today's show. On the one hand, Harold showed respect for Rand Paul's filibuster. On the other, he actually broke out the hoary "my dear friend" in saying he wasn't as worred about the drone policy as is Ron Wyden. And Harold is confident that President Obama will uphold the Constitution. Ford even claimed that AG Eric Holder did "a phenomenal job" in answering questions on the drone policy. We're running out of hands, here, Harold! Matters reached an absurd crescendo when, after observing that those who hang out with terrorists put themselves in peril, Ford proclaimed "I don't dine, socialize or spend time with people who are on a terrorist list around the globe." Good to know! View the video after the jump.
As Joe Scarborough said, "this is liberal on liberal on liberal violence. I love watching it." He was referring to the intra-squad liberal dogfight, spurred by Rand Paul's filibuster, that broke out on Morning Joe today over the use of drones by the U.S. government. H/t NB reader Ray R.
Though former car czar Steve Rattner played a supporting role, the two main combatants were Sam Stein of the Huffington Post and Richard Wolffe of MSNBC itself. Stein criticized the lack of guidelines that the Obama administration has established for the use of drones on U.S. citizens, supporting Paul's argument that it should be an easy question for the Obama admin to answer. In the other corner, Wolffe was the internationalist, suggesting all terrorists should perhaps be entitled to the same due process, be they Saudi, Kuwaiti or American. Stein and Scarborough had to enlighten Wolffe about the special protections the Constitution extends to U.S. citizens. View the video after the jump.
Whoah! What place was Mika Brzezinski talking about? On today's Morning Joe, Brzezinski said that at a place where she used to work, "any woman who did anything or got to the top immediately had something revealed to the press or online or whatever that would bring them down." And whatever happened to solidarity among the sisters? Mika added: I suggest that some might even argue that it's women doing that."
We don't know which employer Mika had in mind, but before coming to MSNBC, by far Brzezinski's longest stints were at CBS. View the video after the jump.
Ping-pong diplomacy worked with China, so why not b-ball diplomacy with North Korea? Mika Brzezinski is clearly not buying that line of logic. On today's Morning Joe, Brzezinski confessed to being "angry" with George Stephanopoulos for having the extraterrestrial otherwise known as Dennis Rodman on This Week to discuss his recent trip to North Korea, which included meeting with its new leader, Kim Jong Un.
Mika didn't spare her fellow MJ panelists, calling them "idiots" when they persisted in discussing Rodman's trip and TW appearance. View the video after the jump.