Jim Acosta’s increasingly infamous shootout on immigration with Stephen Miller on Wednesday drew criticism from many, even on the set of Morning Joe. John Podhoretz, editor of Commentary Magazine, offered a blistering statement of Acosta’s performance declaring, “I agree with him, but he's destroying his own argument with his comportment.” Scarborough acknowledged as much and tepidly offered the suggestion that, “maybe we shouldn't have TVs in the press room after all.” He further noted that Acosta’s criticism “went off the rails” in seeming to equate the Trump immigration policy to “something that you would read out of Mein Kampf or something.”
The full exchange went as follows:
JOE SCARBOROUGH: John Podhoretz on Twitter yesterday, I forget your exact tweet, but it was something like Jim Acosta is doing so horrifically today, that I can't believe I agree with him.
JOHN PODHORETZ: I agree with him, but he's destroying his own argument with his comportment.
SCARBOROUGH: What did you mean by that?
PODHORETZ: I mean, I'm a grandson of immigrants. I find it very hard to take a restrictionist policy because if my grandparents wouldn't have come in, they would have been murdered by the Nazis. It's discomforting to me, but having a reporter yammer at a white house official by quoting Emma Lazarus' poem at the base of the Statue of Liberty as though that's the basis for policy, something living in 1883 and we're living in 2017 and keeping going. That was part of it. It was obnoxious.
Miller is obnoxious as you just showed, which is him saying you're ignorant and stupid and foolish. That wasn't -- the moment that Acosta went into terrible territory was he was like lecturing Miller, quoting a poem that he doesn't know. He was reading it from his notebook as though he were -- as though this there were a debate between him and a public official as opposed to being a journalist who was trying to tease out the difficulties and problems with the proposal which would have been perfectly fine. If he'd asked him a substantive question about restrictions in English and how immigrants, many people-- studies show an immigrant can learn English in six months.
TIMOTHY CARNEY: Jim Acosta should meet someone from Jamaica. I mean I'm from New York. I know lots of people from Ghana, from foreign countries that speak English.
PODHORETZ: 1.5 billion people on Earth it is said, 1.5 billion speak English.
CARNEY: And they're not mostly in the UK.
SCARBOROUGH: Where things seemed to really melt down was when Jim Acosta talked. We're certainly not putting this on Jim Acosta. You can watch the clip and choose sides. Or just say as Tim said after, maybe we shouldn't have TVs in the press room after all. But then Jim Acosta used the language of it seems like your policies are trying to engineer racial and ethnic percentages, or something, it sure sounded like something that you would read out of Mein Kampf or something. I mean talking about, oh, it looks like you're engaged in racial engineering and ethnic engineering or something that we would have accused the Serbs of doing back in the early 1990s. At that point it went off the rails.
The fact that even Joe Scarborough has been forced to concede the sheer idiocy of Jim Acosta’s ridiculous tirade just goes on to show how awful it really was. Even among the media, Acosta seems to have begun being recognized as more of a hindrance than a help to the promotion of the liberal agenda. It remains to be seen, however, whether or not his bosses at CNN will move to do anything about it.