Morning Joe

By Mark Finkelstein | October 2, 2014 | 9:07 AM EDT

Not saying President Obama should be jittery about Andrea Mitchell jumping the White House fence anytime soon.  Even so, the prez would have reason to be concerned if such a generally staunch ally as Andrea openly laughed at his lack of credibility.

View the video and judge for yourself.  On today's Morning Joe, Republican Rep. Matt Salmon predicted that President Obama would send ground troops into Syria sometime after the November elections. Andrea asked "despite the president's promises?"  To which Salmon replied "he also promised if you like your insurance you can keep it.  Come on."  Much mirth and hilarity on the set ensued. Andrea can be seen laughing heartily.  Was she doing so at Salmon for spouting GOP talking points, or was she laughing at President Obama's lack of credibility?

By Mark Finkelstein | October 1, 2014 | 8:27 AM EDT

Imus would call it a "tension convention." There was palpable friction among members of the Morning Joe team today on the question of whether Secret Service Director Julia Pierson was an affirmative action hire. By the end, the almost unfailingly affable Willie Geist was smirking in frustration at Mika Brzezinski.

When Brzezinski first broached the sensitive-for-liberals subject, she suggested that she was going to go further than her male colleagues dared. But by the time she circled back to the topic, Mika had for some reason lost her nerve. She was suddenly so cautious that Donny Deutsch chided her for raising the issue "softly." Things came to a head when Mika, suddenly trying to sound tough, asked Willie whether it was "illegal" for her to ask why Pierson got her job. Willie, having suggested no such thing, could only smirk and look off camera for support in response to Mika's non sequitur of a question.

By Mark Finkelstein | September 29, 2014 | 8:36 AM EDT

Score one for Joe Scarborough.  The Morning Joe host today unleashed a tirade against the FBI for treating as a case of "workplace violence" the beheading by a fanatical Muslim convert of a fellow worker in Oklahoma.  Scarborough lashed out at the FBI's political correctness in claiming that there was "no indication" that the suspect, Alton Nolen, was copying the recent ISIS beheadings.

Said Scarborough: "how stupid does the FBI really think we are? Who exactly are they afraid of offending?"  Political correctness, in its more innocuous manifestations, can be good fodder for humor.  But our government becomes so hobbled by PC that it cannot call Islamic fanaticism by its name, then political correctness becomes a grave threat to our national security.

By Jeffrey Meyer | September 25, 2014 | 9:56 AM EDT

Leave it to MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough to eagerly defend President Obama following his speech to the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday. Appearing on Thursday’s Morning Joe, Scarborough insisted that on foreign policy Obama’s "been criticized from a lot of, you could say conservative circles, mainly neo-con circles for not doing enough and going into Syria a year or two ago. But he certainly has followed public opinion, hasn't he? In that respect, conservative with a small c?”

By Matthew Johnson | and By Julia A. Seymour | September 24, 2014 | 5:18 PM EDT

Author and columnist Naomi Klein is still having trouble getting her facts straight. This time, in an interview with MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” she tried to argue China is not a communist country, even though it is run by the Communist Party of China.

In that Sept. 24 interview, Klein was promoting her new book, “This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate.” She claimed that “we have an economic system that has essentially waged war” on the planet.

By Matthew Johnson | and By Julia A. Seymour | September 24, 2014 | 5:18 PM EDT

Author and columnist Naomi Klein is still having trouble getting her facts straight. This time, in an interview with MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” she tried to argue China is not a communist country, even though it is run by the Communist Party of China.

In that Sept. 24 interview, Klein was promoting her new book, “This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. The Climate.” She claimed that “we have an economic system that has essentially waged war” on the planet.

By Mark Finkelstein | September 22, 2014 | 9:19 AM EDT

Could the "Islamic" in "Islamic State" be a clue?  Not for John Kerry.  Appearing on today's Morning Joe, our clueless Secretary of State insisted that what drives ISIS is a "radical, extremist, cultish" philosophy, but not—perish the thought!—a "religious attitude."

Kerry was of course echoing the analysis of that noted theologian, Barack Obama, who two weeks ago declared that ISIS is "not Islamic."  In fairness, Presidents George W. Bush and Clinton have expressed similar sentiments.  For a thorough debunking of the ISIS/Islam-deniers, see here.

By Curtis Houck | September 19, 2014 | 6:14 PM EDT

On Friday morning, MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski joined the Huffington Post’s Sam Stein in calling for equal news coverage if Christie is officially exonerated in numerous investigations into his involvement of the scandal known as Bridgegate to the non-stop coverage when it broke in January.

During a discussion with their panel on Friday’s Morning Joe, they discussed news that a source informed NBC News on Thursday that a federal investigation has found no evidence that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (R) knew of or ordered lane closures on the George Washington Bridge in September 2013.

By Mark Finkelstein | September 16, 2014 | 8:14 AM EDT

What's next, Mika?  Giant alligators in the sewers of New York City?  On today's Morning Joe, Mika Brzezinski perpetuated the hoary urban legend that domestic violence spikes on Super Bowl Sunday.

Brzezinski's blunder came in the context of the panel's discussion of the NFL's domestic violence mess. Arguing that football is a violent game and that "there's a connection" with what happens at home, Mika continued, "domestic violence on Super Bowl Sunday. We've seen the numbers. Why is that?" Actually, Brzezinski has apparently not seen the numbers, since that myth has been thoroughly debunked, often by organizations fighting domestic violence, as here, here and here.

By Mark Finkelstein | September 15, 2014 | 8:53 AM EDT

Ever since the Ray Rice elevator video went public, Morning Joe has been in a state of sustained moral outrage over the NFL's mishandling of the issue of domestic violence.  All well and good.  But things turned testy this morning when a New York Times reporter turned the tables on Joe and Mika. Allen Schwarz asked if they should march into the office of the NBC Chairman and demand that the network stop supporting the NFL by broadcasting its Sunday night games.

After first jokingly suggesting that the camera on Schwarz be turned off, Scarborough got seriously snippy.  When Schwarz didn't hear Scarborough say "right" in agreement with something the reporter said, Scarborough responded "I said right.  It means I'm agreeing with you.  You don't have to be so defensive. You can just relax."  Scarborough continued taking shots at Schwarz after the reporter left the air.

By Mark Finkelstein | September 11, 2014 | 8:38 AM EDT

President Obama is a great leader.  Really.  Just ask him. Seemingly ignored in the coverage of the president's ISIS speech last night was the moment when President Obama claimed that the ISIS threat was being met with "strength and resolve," then boasted that his strategy—and by extension he himself—represented "American leadership at its best."

Can anyone imagine truly great American leaders--from Washington to Lincoln to Reagan--feeling the need to claim that their plans represented "American leadership at its best?"

By Jeffrey Meyer | September 10, 2014 | 1:57 PM EDT

President Obama is set to address the country on Wednesday night to announce plans to take action against the terrorist group ISIS. In anticipation of the president’s speech, Chuck Todd, NBC News Political Director and moderator of Meet the Press, had some strikingly harsh comments regarding President Obama’s falling poll numbers.

Appearing on MSNBC’s Morning Joe on Wednesday morning, Todd maintained that President Obama is “on the precipice of doing Jimmy Carter-like damage to the Democratic brand on foreign policy if he’s not careful.”