Update | 10: 30 AM: Scarborough acknowledges Biden's 'F' rating. At 8:36 AM EDT, Joe said that "a blog" had attacked him, noting Biden's 'F' rating from gun owners. View video here, which also contains Chuck Todd's statement that even Dems acknowledge Biden's speech "wasn't great."
Joe Scarborough and the rest of the Morning Joe crew actually had my sympathy this morning. Amidst all the infighting at MSNBC, including demands for Joe's head in Olbermann-friendly circles, one could sense that the panel was on its best behavior. During the opening hour, a subdued David Shuster—who had openly fought with Joe just two days ago—was there, but just barely. A conciliatory Scarborough could not have been more enthusiastic in his praise for yesterday's DNC proceedings, from Bill's speech to the historic fact of the nomination of an African-American.
But if my impulse is to cut the Morning Joe folks some slack today, I have to draw the line at the whopper Joe got off at 6:45 AM, in which he claimed that Biden's presence on the ticket will help reassure gun owners that Obama won't take their weapons.
Click on the image to the right to see what Joe had to say, then compare it with Biden's record on gun ownership. As you'll see, the contrast couldn't be more stark.
JOE SCARBOROUGH: You know, we've been talking to union leaders all week, and yesterday we talked to a union leader that said --
At that moment, the heartwarming image of Joe Biden's mother appeared on the screen, eliciting an understandable reaction.
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: A-w-w-w, his mom.
SCARBOROUGH: Look at that mom. Saying "God, you know, it's not going to be easy winning Michigan and Ohio. Let's hope the party does something the next couple nights so I can tell my guys 'they're OK, vote for them.'" Because right now the union leaders are saying "is Obama going to take my guns from me?" And their answer is "we don't know." But Joe Biden helps so much in that respect.
Oh really? Let's go to the Biden record on the right to keep and bear arms. As I detailed in my column of August 19, Remember This When MSM Calls Biden a Moderate, here are Biden ratings from relevant groups from the most recent years in which they graded him:
- F - National Rifle Association
- F - Gun Owners of America
- 95% - Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
If that reassures gun owners, then McCain's 0% rating from NARAL and Planned Parenthood will surely warm the cockles of pro-choice hearts.
Credit the Financial Times' Chrystia Freeland for injecting some sense of realism: "He helps, but I don't think he closes the deal for Barack Obama." I'll say.