Morning Joe

By Connor Williams | August 14, 2014 | 3:45 PM EDT

Token quasi-conservative MSNBC host Joe Scarborough was in full-blown contrarian mode this morning as he offered his perspective on two reporters in Ferguson, Missouri, who were briefly arrested and then shortly thereafter released. The former Florida congressman ripped the reporters in question for failing to listen to the cop’s repeated orders to exit a McDonald’s as they attempted to cordon it off.

After playing video of one of the journalists – the Washington Post’s Wesley Lowery – being told by the police that he needed to leave, the Morning Joe host offered: [MP3 audio here; video below]

By Mark Finkelstein | August 14, 2014 | 8:17 AM EDT

Inevitability, my eye.  If Republicans can't defeat Hillary Clinton in 2016 [assuming she gets there], they should be brought up on charges of political malfeasance.

So lacking is Hillary in the most basic of personal political prerequisites that even Morning Joe called her "canned" and cringeworthy.  The panel was commenting on an excruciating clip of Clinton prior to her hug-it-out dinner with President Obama last night.  Watch it if you dare, but the panel's point was a larger one--that there is something about Clinton's public persona as to be seriously off-putting.  View the video after the jump.

By Mark Finkelstein | August 13, 2014 | 9:37 AM EDT

President Obama is more "forceful" and "stubborn" about playing golf than he is about pushing through his policy agenda.  That was Dana Milbank's take on today's Morning Joe.  

As Joe Scarborough described it, earlier this week the normally left-leaning Milbank enjoyed a "12-minute honeymoon" with conservatives after his Washington Post column called Obama's decision to go golfing while the world burned an example of "tone deafness" if not outright "stupid stuff."  Milbank doubled down on the notion today with his suggestion that the president cares more about making it to the first tee than enacting his policy positions.  Milbank seemed frustrated with Obama's fecklessness. But if the president's love of the links keeps him from pushing his policies, conservatives should be saying "play on, Mr. President!"  View the video after the jump.

By Laura Flint | August 11, 2014 | 5:25 PM EDT

On the August 11 edition of Morning Joe, the MSNBC morning show aired a clip from Obama’s interview with Thomas Friedman that was transcribed in print in the August 9 edition of The New York Times. In the video, Friedman asked the president to comment on “the biggest difference between Democrats and Republicans.” According to Obama, the Democratic “consensus” is “a pretty common sense mainstream consensus” while the Republican consensus is based in “wacky ideological nonsense.”

That’s a heck of a way to reach across the aisle and work for bipartisan agreement on the nation’s pressing issues. Of course, the president’s partisan rhetoric has not been picked up by the Big Three broadcast networks. For its part, MSNBC only devoted 2 minutes and 18 seconds to the clip, 38 seconds of which was just a tease before a commercial break. [See video below. Click here for MP3 audio]

By Laura Flint | August 11, 2014 | 12:45 PM EDT

Amidst the discussion of ISIS’s offensive and Obama’s failed foreign policy with various political experts on the August 11 edition of Morning Joe, Joe Scarborough took the time to berate his fellow Republicans for refusing to “salute the President for being involved.” The host whined that he is “so sick and tired of the same people bitching and moaning about this President not doing things” and then going “on the Sunday shows and bitch and moan” when Obama actually “does things.”

Scarborough even went so far as to lecture  former chief spokesperson for the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq Dan Senor: “Will you do what a lot of Republicans didn't do this weekend and salute the President for being involved?” According to the MSNBC host, Republicans should support the President for “doing what we all know, what realists, what neo-con alike understand we have to do, we have to confront ISIS.” [ See video below. Click here for MP3 audio]

By Laura Flint | August 8, 2014 | 11:15 AM EDT

Friday’s Morning Joe panel made sure to express how it was “disappointed” that a Minnesota restaurant had the audacity to put a “minimum wage fee” on its receipts after the state hiked the wage requirement. While Joe Scarborough acknowledged that “it's hard” for “small business owners running restaurants” he had no sympathy for the restaurant, which had received shocking blowback from its customers for simply specifying why it increased the bill by 35 cents.

The former congressman and MSNBC host, who reportedly earns $99,038 a week for his morning show, stated that he “understand(s) the difficulty of any extra burden” an increase in minimum wage exerts on small businesses. However, he concluded that “with the minimum wage as low as it historically is, you may not want to advertise your contempt for raising it a little bit on the bill.” [See video below. Click here for MP3 audio]

By Laura Flint | August 5, 2014 | 5:00 PM EDT

Joe Scarborough today continued his new Morning Joe routine of making anti-Israel remarks and then shouting down anyone who disagrees. Unlike the previous editions of the MSNBC morning show in which the former congressman focused on insulting his critics in the media, on the July 5th edition, Scarborough opted to attack a recurring guest at the program’s roundtable discussions, Donny Deutsch, no conservative stalwart he.

The liberal advertising executive had the tenacity to disagree with the MSNBC host about his characterizations of Israel. After Scarborough invited Andrea Mitchell and Chuck Todd onto the show to emphasize the “deep dismay from the White House and the State Department toward what Israel has done” and how “you get the sense that Israel really listened” to their critiques, Deutsch commented “let’s just not forgot that Hamas is a terrorist organization and Israel is a democracy.” The former Florida Republican immediately became defensive, demanding “Who disagrees with that?” [See video below. Click here for MP3 audio]

By Tom Blumer | August 3, 2014 | 10:43 AM EDT

On Thursday, as Connor Williams at NewsBusters reported, Joe Scarborough at MSNBC "ripped Israel for their 'indiscriminate' attacks upon Gaza, and feared that this would only cause the conflict to worsen in the future." Specifically, Scarborough said that "this is asinine. This continued killing of women and children in a way that appears to be indiscriminate is asinine," and "we will rue the day that this is happening every day and women and children are being seen."

On Friday, as Laura Flint at NewsBusters noted, Scarborough attempted to walk back some of what he said, insulting his objectors by saying he would use "simple talk that simple minded people can understand." He was apparently so proud of what he said that he had it printed virtually verbatim at the Politico late Friday afternoon, complete with an emphatic, condescending title. Let's revisit the screed to make a few important points (produced in full because it has already been broadcast; bolds and numbered tags, used so Joe can better follow "simple-minded" points, are mine):

By Laura Flint | August 1, 2014 | 12:55 PM EDT

In response to the media backlash following Joe Scarborough’s harsh remarks about Israel on yesterday’s Morning Joe broadcast, the former Republican congressman spent almost four minutes of air-time on the August 1 edition insulting “the usual suspects” that lacked “the intellectual capacity to actually grasp” his earlier “statement.” He stated that he would use “simple talk that simple minded people can understand” to refine his stance.

For Scarborough, “simple talk” meant backing away from many of the statements he made yesterday. As my NewsBusters colleague Connor Williams noted, on the July 31 edition of the MSNBC morning show, after speaking with MSNBC’s notoriously biased journalist Ayman Mohyeldin from Gaza, Scarborough went on a rant, blasting the “asinine” and “indiscriminate” attacks by Israel on Palestinian civilians. In contrast, today he asserted that “America must stand with Israel” as “they are America’s strongest ally in the region.”

By Mark Finkelstein | August 1, 2014 | 9:17 AM EDT

Do Gaza civilians support Hamas' military operations that use them as human shields and store weapons in their schools and mosques?  Ayman Mohyeldin would have you think so.  On today's Morning Joe, the NBC reporter claimed that among Gazans, Hamas' military wing is "very highly revered."

To which Israeli spokesman Mark Regev had a stunning comeback: "I mean, if you walk down the street in Gaza with an NBC camera and you ask people, well, was Hamas shooting from this building that the Israelis targeted? No, everyone will say, of course, not. Because you have a regime that is ultimately authoritarian and violent to its own people and they have that ability to control the message. It's like walking down the street in Cuba with a camera and saying do you like Fidel Castro? What can people say?"  View the video after the jump.

By Tom Johnson | July 31, 2014 | 5:02 PM EDT

NewsBusters readers presumably would laugh at the proposition that the media are biased against Hillary Clinton, but plenty of liberals, including Mother Jones blogger Kevin Drum, believe it.

In a Tuesday post, Drum, regarding the media’s fascination with Hillary’s “dead broke” remark, wrote, “Hillary could have responded to questions about her wealth a little better. She's not the natural politician Bill is. But really, there's not much else here. So why does it continue to be news a full month later?” Drum then touched on Mark Halperin’s recent comment on Morning Joe that “the press loves to cover [Hillary] hard.” Halperin also said on another recent Morning Joe broadcast that Hillary is “destined to get horrible coverage if she runs for president.” Drum went on (emphasis added):

By Connor Williams | July 31, 2014 | 4:40 PM EDT

As the Israel-Hamas conflict rages on, it appears that the Israelis have lost Joe Scarborough as a trusted ally. On the July 31 edition of Morning Joe, the former Florida Congressman ripped Israel for their “indiscriminate” attacks upon Gaza, and feared that this would only cause the conflict to worsen in the future.

Following Ayman Mohyeldin’s pro-Hamas reporting on the issue, Scarborough reacted to the news that an Israeli rocket reportedly hit a UN school in Gaza: [MP3 audio here; video below]