Morning Joe

By Mark Finkelstein | February 20, 2015 | 7:55 AM EST

Something striking on today's Morning Joe. On the one hand, there was complete consensus that—as a matter of politics—Rudy Giuliani made a huge mistake in claiming that President Obama doesn't love America.  Panelists called his comments "stupid," "crazy," "tone deaf," even "racist."

Joe Scarborough did suggest that some Republican make this his Sister Souljah moment by criticizing Giuliani and saying that of course President Obama loves America.

By Mark Finkelstein | February 19, 2015 | 9:18 AM EST

New York Daily News columnist Mike Lupica ought to stick to sports. When he wanders into politics he says silly stuff, as on today's Morning Joe.  

With HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell being interviewed about Obamacare, Lupica unctuously wondered out loud: "how did something that was this noble an idea become something over time that the other party uses against this president constantly? And is there a way, over the last two years of his presidency, for him to throw some sort of Hail Mary pass and make this look like the triumph he thought it was going to be?"

By Mark Finkelstein | February 18, 2015 | 11:58 AM EST

Honoring a long tradition of liberal women circling the wagons around Dem men accused of impropriety, Mika Brzezinski has come to the defense of Uncle Joe Biden.

On today's Morning JoeMika declared that Biden was not being "creepy" when for 20 seconds he put his hands on Stephanie Carter during her husband Ash's swearing in as Defense Secretary. For good measure, Mika claimed Biden "probably" said something sweet. Has Brzezinski spoken with Mrs. Carter, or is she displaying her skills for a second career as Real Psychic Mika?

By Mark Finkelstein | February 18, 2015 | 9:23 AM EST

Latest dispatch from President Obama's Department of Terrible Deeds in the Name of Christ . . . Morning Joe invited the State Department spox Marie Harf on today to give her a chance to clarify what she said to Chris Matthews about the US being unable to "kill our way" out of the ISIS problem and the need to focus on the "root causes" of terrorism.

After brushing off the suggestion by General Michael Hayden that she'd like a "mulligan" on those remarks, Harf attempted to distract from the focus on Islamic terrorism. Discussing this week's White House summit on "extremism," Harf cited the Lord's Resistance Army led by Ugandan Joseph Kony. Huffed Harf: "I don't remember people talking about that as much anymore, but that's a Christian militant group."

By Mark Finkelstein | February 18, 2015 | 7:13 AM EST

There are still 10 months to go in 2015, but Mike Barnicle is a strong frontrunner for Clumsiest Comment of the Year.

In a Morning Joe segment today on ISIS outrages, and shortly after mentioning the atrocity in which ISIS burned dozens of people to death in Iraq, Barnicle said that the complexity of dealing with ISIS makes "you want to set your hair on fire."

By Mark Finkelstein | February 17, 2015 | 7:23 AM EST

Mike Barnicle: proud member of the Barack Obama "terrible deeds in the name of Christ" school of moral blindness . . . 

Joe Scarborough opened today's Morning Joe with a protracted and impassioned plea for America—and in particular President Obama—to call out radical Islam by name. Mika Brzezinski was dubious, citing unspecified "difficult times" in the past when presidents used the wrong language. But taking Mika's misgivings a giant step further, Mike Barnicle flatly declared that we can't call radical Islam by name because "we're the Crusaders."

By Mark Finkelstein | February 16, 2015 | 8:01 AM EST

Joe Scarborough says he doesn't want to be "torn to shreds online" for analogizing the threat of radical Christianity to that of radical Islam.  Simple solution: stop analogizing the threat of radical Christianity to that of radical Islam.

On today's Morning Joe, Scarborough twice suggested such parallels, analogizing radical Islamists to "ultrafundamentalist Christians who believe every single word of the Bible has to be interpreted in the exact ways which could also lead to some violence." A bit later, Scarborough circled back, saying "it doesn't matter what faith you're in," that a literal reading of scripture attracts the outcasts of society, for better or "for much worse."

By Curtis Houck | February 13, 2015 | 1:41 PM EST

Update, 3:50 p.m. Eastern: Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber (D) announced his resignation Friday afternoon and will be effective next Wednesday (February 18).

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With calls for Democratic Govenor John Kitzhaber to resign and Secretary of State referring to the Governor’s behavior Thursday as “strange” and “bizarre,” one would think that the media would devote time to a story that has dominated the Beaver State and could lead to a longtime Governor leaving office in disgrace. Alas, the networks refused to cover it on both their Thursday evening and Friday morning broadcasts.

By Mark Finkelstein | February 12, 2015 | 7:15 AM EST

What a snob!  On today's Morning Joe, Howard Dean, a product of fancy prep schools and Yale, suggested that Scott Walker was unfit to be president because his lack of a college degree rendered him "unknowledgeable."

Dean's disdain for the un-diplomaed came during a discussion of Walker having declined, during his recent trip to the UK, to state whether he believes in evolution.  Joe Scarborough was incredulous at Dean's diss, pointing out that people such as Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg never finished college.  To which list might be added super-successful and knowledgeable people from Rush Limbaugh to Steve Jobs.

By Scott Whitlock | February 11, 2015 | 11:28 AM EST

Unlike the near silence from NBC and most of MSNBC, Morning Joe's hosts actually covered the Brian Williams scandal. Despite the six month suspension for the Nightly News anchor, Joe Scarborough and Willie Geist aren't sure that the journalist will ever return to his old job. 

By Mark Finkelstein | February 11, 2015 | 8:21 AM EST

Joe Scarborough is shocked by the outpouring of "sheer hatred, snarkiness and snideness" directed at Brian Williams. 

On today's Morning Joe, Scarborough drew a contrast between himself, who as an opinion person has to expect much criticism, and Williams, who he claimed reported the news in a "straight" way.  But as Newsbusters and our parent MRC has carefully documented, Williams has been anything but a "straight" reporter of the news. Like so many of his MSM brethren, Williams had a distinctly liberal slant.

By Randy Hall | February 10, 2015 | 6:13 PM EST

During the Tuesday edition of MSNBC's Morning Joe program, co-host Joe Scarborough slammed the judges in his home state of Alabama who are refusing to obey a U.S. Supreme Court order to begin issuing marriage licenses for same-sex couples.

He referred to the judges who are “ignoring the Constitution of the United States” -- led by Roy Moore, Alabama's chief justice, who declared that the January ruling in favor of gay marriage by U.S. District Judge Ginny Granade should be disregarded -- as an “embarrassment” to the state “I love and adore.”