Okay, Jon Meacham, we're going to take up your invitation, and mock you, you shameless hack!
On today's Morning Joe, discussing Ukrainian President Zelensky's visit to D.C. today, Mika Brzezinski was seeing "Churchillian parallels," and Biden speecheriter Meacham agreed, and then spread the FDR/Churchill vibes to Biden:
I think President Biden has led with immense skill throughout this crisis. It's reminiscent of the senior President Bush during the first Gulf War, and then back to the great World War II leadership. And I say that without, people can mock that, perhaps, but David [Ignatius] can check me on it. The way he's managing these alliances, the way he is trying to enable America to project power without going too far and yet without falling short.
The notion that Biden—who struggles to read from a teleprompter, and often can't find his way off a stage—has "immense skill" at anything beyond hair-sniffing at this point is furious spin.
It's handy to have another liberal pundit on the set to back you up. Although, in fact, Ignatius didn't get the chance to either support or refute Meacham's risible claim. Instead, Mika Brzezinski immediately transitioned to more obsessive discussion of the release of Donald Trump's tax returns.
Perhaps Meacham is remembering the elder President Bush extra-fondly because Bush cooperated with Meacham on a book. Does anyone remember any liberal-media praise for Bush's "immense skill" back during his presidency? Neither do I.
On NBC Nightly News in 1992, former anchorman John Chancellor offered a commentary suggesting Bush's victory was embarrassing....in its lopsided death toll:
"Greenpeace, the public interest organization, believes that the Iraqi death toll, civilian and military, before and after the war, may be as high as 198,000. Allied military dead are counted in the low hundreds. The disparity is huge and somewhat embarrassing."
Note also that in introducing Meacham at the top of the show, Mika failed to mention Meacham's role as an occasional Biden speechwriter. She described him only as a "presidential historian." Shouldn't that be disclosed when he's lauding Biden's "immense skill"?
As you'll see in the screencap, the deception extended to his billing in the screen graphic.
On Morning Joe, MSNBC regular and Biden speechwriter Jon Meacham claiming that Biden has shown "incredible skill" in his handling of the Ukrainian crisis was sponsored in part by Abbott, maker of FreeStyle Libre, and Xfinity.
Here's the transcript.
6:05 am ET
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: The impact on Republicans should be pretty powerful. I think, also, it's a chance for Volodymyr Zelenskyy to really show Americans and tell Americans personally from his heart that Ukrainians are fighting and dying for the safety of the world, ultimately.
And Jon Meacham, your thoughts? Is this solidifying any Churchillian parallels here?
JON MEACHAM: Hmm. Absolutely. With a great sense of theater and a great commitment to the hard, hard, hard work. Unimaginable work for most of us, of defending your country from a superior power. Zelenskyy is very much acting in the Churchillian tradition. Churchill didn't come to the United States during World War II until December 1941, after both Pearl Harbor and Hitler's declaration of war on the United States. It was at that point that FDR said to him, we're all in the same boat now. And it was a boat that, like Zelenskyy, Churchill had been in, largely alone, since the spring of 1940.
And we had been fighting this battle that we're fighting again. I think this is the thing to think about today, and tomorrow, as people watch these events. This is one of our oldest and most difficult battles in the United States. It's between engagement in the world, and isolationism. The false sense that because of our, the gift of geography of the United States of America, that somehow we are, to paraphrase Churchill, not involved in the agonies and the triumphs of the Old World. But we are.
And I think President Biden has led with immense skill throughout this crisis. It's reminiscent of the senior President Bush during the first Gulf War, and then back to the great World War II leadership.
And I say that without, people can mock that, perhaps, but David can check me on it. The way he's managing these alliances, the way he is trying to enable America to project power without going too far and yet without falling short. And that's, in many ways, of course, the great test of diplomacy. And I think that will bring all of this top of mind in the next 24 hours.