Brzezinski's Latest Blast: 'Whatever Happened to Iraq Study Group?'

Mika Brzezinski is at it again. As noted here and here, the daughter of Jimmy Carter's former National Security Advisor is inclined to inject her personal political views into her MSNBC newsreading role.

At 6:10 am EDT on today's "Morning Joe," Mika read an item reporting that Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) had called for a change of course in Iraq and expressed support for the recommendations of the Iraq Study Group, co-chaired by James Baker and Lugar's fellow Hoosier, Lee Hamilton.

Mika couldn't restrain herself, archly asking:

MSNBC NEWSREADER MIKA BRZEZINSKI: Whatever happened to the Iraq Study Group, because I believe President Bush asked for those pieces of advice, correct?

Host Joe Scarborough immediately called Mika on her editorializing.

MSNBC HOST JOE SCARBOROUGH: The thing is, Mika, if you write for the front page of the New York Times, they don't let you go into the editorial room.

View video here.

Brzezkinski refused to recognize the obvious.

BRZEZINSKI: I'm not . . .

SCARBOROUGH: You don't write editorials in the lead story. Mika, you're going to have to decide. You're going to be an opinion person or you're going to be a news person.

BRZEZINSKI: Whoah, whoah, whoah, whoah.

Trying to return Mika to her newsreading roots, Joe ordered that she be handed the Paris Hilton story to read [which she had declined to do at the top of the news report, though it had been scheduled as the lead story.] As pictured here, Mika promptly ripped up the report.

BRZEZINSKI: Here's the deal: I asked a question, a question. It's not editorializing. Journalists are allowed to ask questions.

SCARBOROUGH: OK, ask me a question.

BRZEZINSKI: OK, whatever happened to the Iraq Study Group? Wasn't it -- and I may be wrong -- sanctioned by the president?

SCARBOROUGH: There are two types of questions, Mika. There are questions, and then there are rhetorical questions.

MIKA, unrepentant: That's not a rhetorical question!

SCARBOROUGH: You asked me a rhetorical question that you know the answer to . . . You know what? It's sort of like, Willie Geist [the likeable MSNBCer, back from a brief leave as his wife gave birth to daughter Lucy], I remember that I was covering the McCarthy hearings back in I don't remember was it '56, '55 or '56 [Scarborough was born in 1963. A running gag on the show is its, and Scarborough's, longevity. He often refers to the show, on the air only a matter of weeks, celebrating its 20th anniversary], "have you no shame, sir?" That is a rhetorical question.

Even then, Brzezinski wouldn't bow to reality: I think it's an interesting question. Especially now, in light of what Sen. Lugar is saying. I just would like to connect the dots.

SCARBOROUGH had the last laugh: What, is she following Olbermann now at 9 o'clock? Are they clearing that space for her at nine o'clock [a bit of self-deprecating humor, given that MSNBC's 9 PM slot is hosted by none other than . . . Scarborough himself. Unless, of course, his morning gig becomes permanent.]

Contact Mark at mark@gunhill.net

Mark Finkelstein
Mark Finkelstein is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.