Scarborough Slams FNC’s Sammon: Media Don’t ‘Hate’ Palin, But ‘Hated’ Her Early On

On Tuesday’s Morning Joe, MSNBC host Joe Scarborough took exception with FNC analyst Bill Sammon for using the word "hate" to describe mainstream media sentiment toward Sarah Palin, contending that "you can't just say that people ‘hate’ Sarah Palin." But, while he spent more than two minutes complaining about Sammon’s use of the word "hate," Scarborough seemed to contradict himself at one point as he ended up using the word "hated" to describe media reaction to the former Alaska governor after she was first chosen as John McCain’s running mate.

The MSNBC host went on to suggest that the media got over their initial feeling of "hate" and "tried" to "start reporting on her down the middle." Scarborough: "And, by the way, we called out the media when they attacked her without even knowing who she was. And we said they hated her in the press early on without knowing her because she was a pro-life woman. Now, did they get past that and start reporting on her down the middle? They tried. But again, they don't hate her. I don't think they under-, a lot of people don't understand somebody from Wasilla who hunts, who is pro-life. There is a cultural gap. But to just say that they hate..."

Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of the Tuesday, February 9, Morning Joe on MSNBC, with critical portions in bold:

JOE SCARBOROUGH: Bill Sammon, I’ve read Bill Sammon, I like him a lot, but you can’t just say that people "hate" Sarah Palin. I got emails from people yesterday that said I was a "whore" for MSNBC and that I hated Sarah Palin, and I just responded back to them: Oh, really, did I hate Sarah Palin when I said she gave one of the best convention speeches I’d heard in a long time? Did I hate Sarah Palin when I said she was a great political choice that first month of the campaign? I mean, we defended Sarah Palin when Sarah Palin deserved defending. But the fact is, she’s come back out, she’s ill-prepared, she stammers around, she’s still not ready for primetime, and she has yet to give a speech as inspiring as that first convention speech. And she was not impressive the other night in front of the Tea Party people. That doesn’t mean I hate Sarah Palin any more than it means I loved Sarah Palin when I said she was doing a great job at the end of the campaign when they were hiding Biden. Remember? They were hiding Biden on a plane circling America. We complemented her. Were we whores then? Did we hate Sarah Palin? No, it’s called reporting. And it’s called telling the truth. And yesterday, just as I offended these people who want you to just bow down and worship Sarah Palin, I offended Obama people for criticizing his health care plan. Seriously, these people need to grow up and realize that you don’t have to blindly follow parties or people. That’s what’s wrong with this country. It’s just, it’s sickening.

...

And, by the way, if Chuck Todd hated Sarah Palin, I would have already called Chuck Todd out.

We know I lean into people on this show. He doesn’t hate Sarah Palin. There are a lot of people around here, I don’t know anybody that hates Sarah Palin, but they just wonder-

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: We’re not about hate.

SCARBOROUGH: -why she didn’t prepare any better. But, again, our job is to call out both sides.

BRZEZINSKI: And, you know what, it’s interesting watching her (UNINTELLIGIBLE) for Fox News.

SCARBOROUGH: And, by the way, we called out the media-

BRZEZINSKI: Absolutely.

SCARBOROUGH: -when they attacked her without even knowing who she was.

BRZEZINSKI: Absolutely. We called out our own colleagues on what we saw was an immediate reactionary voice when we didn’t even know anything about her. That’s what we did.

SCARBOROUGH: And we said they hated her in the press early on without knowing her because she was a pro-life woman. Now, did they get past that and start reporting on her down the middle? They tried. But again, they don’t hate her. I don’t think they under-, a lot of people don’t understand somebody from Wasilla who hunts, who is pro-life. There is a cultural gap.

BRZEZINSKI: See, I have no problem with any of that.

SCARBOROUGH: But to just say that they hate – it’s like Barnicle. He’s from Boston. He is biased and bigoted towards anybody in the Southeast.

BRZEZINSKI: But we still love him.

SCARBOROUGH: But he works through these prejudices.

MIKE BARNICLE: It’s without hatred, though.

SCARBOROUGH: It’s without hatred. And that makes all the difference.