Morning Joe

By Mark Finkelstein | January 30, 2015 | 8:46 AM EST

You say "Jeb Bush," Thomas Roberts says "the Kouachi brothers." 

It's got to be one of the strangest political Rorschach test results of all time. On today's Morning Joe, Roberts claimed that Jeb Bush would have a "big onus" around his neck if he runs for president "because if we hear 'Bush' we're automatically going to go to people bringing up the Kouachi brothers and their photos of Abu Ghraib that radicalized them about Iraq."

By Mark Finkelstein | January 29, 2015 | 8:29 AM EST

Ayman Mohyeldin has suggested that Chris Kyle, the real "American Sniper," was a "racist" whose military missions were nothing less than "killing sprees." 

With opinions like that, you might imagine Mohyeldin to be some unhinged bloviator from the bowels of the anti-American far left. Or, an NBC foreign correspondent [who formerly worked for Al Jazeera] who regularly reports on events in the Middle East.  Which is exactly what he is.  Ayman vented his bile on today's Morning Joe.

By Kyle Drennen | January 27, 2015 | 3:12 PM EST

Appearing on MSNBC's Morning Joe on Tuesday, Huffington Post reporter Sam Stein worried that the Clinton political machine would be unable to compete with funding from Charles and David Koch during the 2016 presidential campaign: "I mean, Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton will be scratching lotto tickets, I think, for the next week just trying to catch up with the $889 million that the Koch brothers are going to put in here."

By Mark Finkelstein | January 26, 2015 | 8:43 AM EST

On today's Morning Joe, Nicolle Wallace was asked to comment on conservative columnist Byron York's panning of Palin's speech as "long, rambling, and at times barely coherent." York's column also passed along criticism of the speech by a number of Iowa Republicans.  Wallace said that it was interesting to see York come "full circle," since back in 2008 he had been a Palin defender, blaming the campaign for the way she was packaged.  Wallace then doubled down with this dig: "This is who she is. This to me is evidence that she has finally shed every last one of those annoying handlers." Reeoorw!  

By Mark Finkelstein | January 23, 2015 | 8:18 AM EST

On today's Morning Joe, commenting on the arrest of Dem NYS Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver on bribery charges, Rattner claimed that "they don't pay these guys full-time salaries. They pay them, I think, $112,000 a year."  

By Mark Finkelstein | January 22, 2015 | 9:12 AM EST

Jim VandeHei sees dead people. On today's Morning Joe, the Politico honcho agreed with Joe Scarborough's suggestion that Chris Christie is like Bruce Willis in The Sixth Sense: [politically] dead but doesn't know it.

Ironically, Scarborough distanced himself from his own suggestion, twice saying that he didn't believe it. But when he asked his guest if the characterization was fair, Vandehei replied "I think it is. At best he's a live man stumbling."

By Mark Finkelstein | January 20, 2015 | 11:37 AM EST

Tuning into the middle of a Morning Joe segment today, at first I assumed that MSNBC's Ari Melber was chatting with the Oscar nominees.  But no, turns out Melber had scored interviews with President Obama's SOTU speechwriting team. You'll excuse my confusion. As you'll see, just like the Oscar hopefuls, the SOTU writers appear to be a panorama of people of pallor. 

By Jeffrey Meyer | January 20, 2015 | 9:45 AM EST

On Tuesday, Joy Behar, former co-host on ABC’s The View, appeared on MSNBC’s Morning Joe to discuss a variety of political issues as the 2016 presidential field takes shape and decided to take a cheap shot at Mike Huckabee for his comments directed at pop singer Beyonce. Speaking to co-host Mika Brzezinski, Behar proclaimed “the overriding thing about this conversation with Huckabee is, you know, there's a certain mental midgetness to it that.” 

By Tim Graham | January 19, 2015 | 2:17 PM EST

If the notion of an “MSNBC Catholic” sounds like a complete non sequitur, you could be thinking of Mike Barnicle. In a foam-flecked Daily Beast attack on conservative Catholic Cardinal Raymond Burke -- "Catholicism’s Most Offensive Mansplainer" -- Barnicle and the Beasties highlighted how his “mother the nun” would call Burke an “a**hole” in Gaelic.

Barnicle also uncorked a completely crackpot line: “The cost of his gilded, ornate vestments could feed a family of four across a decade.”

By Mark Finkelstein | January 16, 2015 | 9:32 AM EST

Interesting: Cuba's Bureau of Tourism sponsored a three-minute promo on today's Morning Joe. Oh, wait, no.  That was NBC itself, in the person of Kate Snow, with a smiley, unrelentingly upbeat segment promoting the glories of tourism in Cuba that will now be possible for Americans under President Obama's executive order relaxing former restrictions.

Snow's segment—entitled 'Bienvenidos a Cuba' just like a travelogue—had it all: beaches, dancing in the streets, cigars, rum, beer and all those nifty vintage cars potentially available to collectors. So, you ask, what did Snow have to say about the repressive Communist regime that continues to rule Cuba?  Nada, naturally.  Don't harsh the Cohiba mellow, compadre!

By Mark Finkelstein | January 15, 2015 | 10:10 AM EST

Europe has been the target of numerous acts of Muslim terrorism, while its economies suffer and unemployment is rampant.  The United States is still recovering from 9-11 and has been the object of a number of terrorist attacks/attempts since then.  Yet in neither country is there a voice in mainstream television saying that right-wing parties might have a point when they advocate limits on immigration.

That was Joe Scarborough's point on today's Morning Joe: "I have yet to hear one person on American television or European television, mainstream, say these people [right-wingers favoring immigration restrictions] may have a point."

By Mark Finkelstein | January 12, 2015 | 8:08 AM EST

It's not enough to read the transcript.  You really need to view the video to appreciate the depths of Christopher Dickey's world-weary, dismissive, preening political correctness. Asked on today's Morning Joe to comment on Muslim preachers inciting violence from their pulpits, Dickey of The Daily Beast sniffed that the problem is "exaggerated," claimed that the number of violent Muslims is "infinitesimally small" [down even from the "minuscule" number he cited last week], and engaged in the most fraudulent form of moral equivalency, saying that there are also crazy Christian, Jewish and Hindu preachers who incite their congregations.