Bay Buchanan Challenges Joe Scarborough's Conservatism Right To His Face

Bay Buchanan, one of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's senior advisers, got into quite a heated exchange with MSNBC's Joe Scarborough on NBC's Meet the Press Sunday.

After Scarborough took issue with Buchanan implying that she was the only conservative present on a panel filled with liberals, Buchanan replied, "You know, Joe, on this set, you appear to be one of the four" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

JOE SCARBOROUGH, MSNBC: What’s so disturbing about that video is like you said, David, Mitt Romney doesn’t get it. He doesn’t believe it. And that’s what comes through. Margaret Thatcher, shopkeeper’s daughter, would have never said that in a million years.

DEE DEE MYERS (Fmr. Clinton White House Press Secretary): Never.

BAY BUCHANAN (Senior Adviser, Mitt Romney Presidential Campaign): And, you know, this-- this is-- this is just like four to one, I should be able to be allowed to speak, you know, for each one of these gentleman-- these people here.

For the record, along with Scarborough were the New York Times's David Brooks, former Clinton press secretary Dee Dee Myers, and Democratic Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed.

As such, despite Scarborough's ensuing pushback, Buchanan was indeed the only person on that set that at this stage in his or her life can be called a conservative.

Scarborough didn't agree:

MR. SCARBOROUGH: Wait, wait, wait, wait…

MS. BUCHANAN: …but let me-- let me make something real clear here.

MR. SCARBOROUGH: …you don’t-- you don’t-- you don’t like a Margaret Thatcher fan or a Ronald Reagan fan?

MS. BUCHANAN: Yeah. Let-- let me make-- please, let me make a point here.

MR. SCARBOROUGH: Well, don’t-- don’t put me as a four to one because I’m not. I’m a small government conservative.

MS. BUCHANAN: But, you know, Joe, on this set, you appear to be one of the four.

MR. SCARBOROUGH: I’m also with the Wall Street Journal editorial page. I’m also with-- with every conservative.

MS. BUCHANAN: All right. All right. We know-- we know that you…

MR. SCARBOROUGH: I’m with Rush.

Scarborough's with Rush? Actually, he might want to listen to Limbaugh's program more often for the conservative talk radio host regularly ridicules him as a Republican In Name Only.

Mark Levin derides him as "Morning Schmoe." But I digress:

MS. BUCHANAN: Yep.

MR. SCARBOROUGH: I’m with-- you name the conservative…

MS. BUCHANAN: Yes. All right.

MR. SCARBOROUGH: …they have my concern, Bay. So please don’t characterize me as being one of these four.

MS. BUCHANAN: Yes. Okay. Let me...

DAVID GREGORY, HOST: Go ahead, Bay.

MS. BUCHANAN: Let me-- let me make a point.

MS. MYERS: We’re not that bad.

DAVID BROOKS, NEW YORK TIMES: What’s wrong with us?

MR. SCARBOROUGH: I love them all, but I’m not one of them.

MS. BUCHANAN: First of all-- first of all, you know, to characterize the personal life of Mitt Romney as Dee Dee has is-- is to show that she does not know the man, she does not know what he has done because this is a man…

MS. MYERS: I should know what he’s done.

MS. BUCHANAN: …this is a man who has spent a life in serving others. That is the basis of what he believes, and he has given.

MS. MYERS: I’m not questioning that, Bay. That’s not my point.

MS. BUCHANAN: …number two-- no-- yes, it’s exactly what you-- number two-- number two, we have a-- we have-- we are in perilous times in this country. We are looking at financial ruin. We are looking at dependency. We’re a nation of people dependent on their government. And what-- that is what Barack Obama gives us, and he promises more of that in four more years. This election will decide if we take that path or with Mitt Romney. If we take a path where we actually allow people, those who are troubled now, those who can’t make ends meet, those who are relying on food stamps to pay for their...

GREGORY: Wait a minute. They-- these are-- these are-- excuse me, these-- you can defend Governor Romney, that’s fine. But they-- this is-- this is just-- these are political talking points more than being responsive to some of the reality…

MS. BUCHANAN: No.

GREGORY: …the political reality. We can show it on the screen. The unfavorable ratings of Mitt Romney. You’re a political professional. You understand how campaigns operate. If he-- if people don’t know it, who bears the blame for that? Look at his high unfavorable ratings at fifty percent, the highest of any candidate running in recent memory. This is an image problem that his philosophical statements in this speech in May to fundraisers only exacerbates.

MS. BUCHANAN: It’s because of the way it has been falsely interpreted, deliberately so, and I might add…

GREGORY: By Da-- by David Brooks, by-- by Joe Scarborough-- by Joe Scarborough, by the way?

(Cross talk)

MS. BUCHANAN: But-- but-- the key is-- the key is…

GREGORY: Right.

(Cross talk)

MR. SCARBOROUGH: This is nonsense. No, no, I’m sorry. I’ve got to cut this off. David Brooks…


If Scarborough has become such an "MSNBC conservative" that he thinks Brooks is right-wing, there's really no hope left for him.

I interviewed Brooks at the 2008 Republican National Convention, and he told me flat out that he's a right-of-center moderate which quite fits his written and spoken opinions. But I once again digress:

MS. BUCHANAN: The key here is which side are you on? We are taking this country…

MR. SCARBOROUGH: … Joe Scarborough, the Wall Street Journal editorial page, Laura Ingraham, Rush Limbaugh, I can go on and on…

GREGORY: Taking on…

MS. BUCHANAN: Rush Limbaugh has been enormously supportive.

Indeed he has, far more so than anyone on MSNBC including Scarborough.

As for Buchanan, she asked the question that many conservatives have been asking of the Morning Joe host for over a year: "Which side are you on?"

Brava, Bay! Brava!

(HT Ann Coulter)

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.