Chris Reeves was an intern in the Media Research Center's News Analysis Division.
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On Friday’s Morning Joe, co-host Joe Scarborough and Washington Post columnist David Ignatius tried to explain the current anti-government protests in Iran by painting a broader picture of a “red state Iran” and a “blue state Iran.” Scarborough described “red state Iran” as a place that “wanted to keep the mullahs in charge,” whereas “[b]lue state Iran wanted to move Iran into the 20th century.”
In the wake of the immense political conflagration that Michael Wolff’s upcoming book Fire and Fury has caused, Thursday’s Morning Joe was almost entirely consumed by discussion of all its salacious claims and their implications for the Trump White House. Even though multiple guest panelists on the show admitted to the shaky factual foundation for Wolff’s book and the unproven nature of many of his assertions, they nevertheless largely treated his testament as gospel.
On Tuesday’s Deadline: White House, MSNBC’s pundits continued their pattern of shameless anti-journalism coverage. While in the midst of a discussion about the latest Trump-Russia collusion story, New York Times reporter Jeremy Peters and MSNBC contributor Charlie Sykes went on the warpath against Trump for his recent tweet calling for an investigation of longtime Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin and former FBI Director James Comey for mishandling of classified information.
On Tuesday’s Morning Joe, economic analyst Steve Rattner used a series of charts and graphs to deliver a supposedly straight, facts-oriented report about President Trump’s federal judicial nominations to date. However, Rattner could not help but devolve into standard left-wing talking points impugning Trump as a racist patriarch looking to deliberately exclude non-whites and women from the bench.
On Wednesday, The New York Times closed out a shameful year-long campaign to whitewash and rehabilitate the legacy of communism by publishing yet another op-ed praising the Soviet Union. In spite of having spent ten years travelling throughout Russia talking to people about their family histories and memories of the Soviet period, writers Olga Shevchenko and Oksana Sarkisova were apparently unable to find any relatives of the more than 20 million people who were murdered during the course of political purges, forced collectivization, or starvation genocide. Instead, they mostly focused on those with pleasant memories of living under the totalitarian regime’s nightmarish police state.
On Wednesday’s Morning Joe, MSNBC news anchor and NBC News correspondent Katy Tur joined her fellow pundits to lament the current state of political affairs in America after a year of Donald Trump’s presidency. In spite of her long history of false claims, distortions, and apologia on behalf of liberal politicians and causes, Tur had the audacity to complain that “we’re in our tribes. We’re screaming across social media. And we’re allowing it to divide us.”
Tuesday morning on MSNBC, Chris Jansing and Ayman Mohyeldin brought on The Nation’s Sports Editor Dave Zirin to argue that President Trump’s attacks on kneeling NFL players was actually a campaign of “open, ugly racism” deliberately aimed at discouraging black athletes from expressing their opinions. Last week in The Nation Zirin lambasted “Donald Trump, Fox News, and their neo-Nazi-infused right-wing echo chamber” for spending “a year frothing with rabid barbarism” to shut down black voices. Jansing and Mohyeldin promoted Zirin’s piece as both “thought-provoking” and “absolutely brilliant.”
On Thursday’s Morning Joe, the show’s liberal pundits continued their smear campaign targeting congressional lawmakers and journalists who have been trying to reveal the full extent of political bias within the FBI that may have adversely affected its investigations of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential campaign. Working with the knowledge that there is now an official congressional investigation into the FBI and DOJ’s conduct last year, co-host Joe Scarborough and his guest panelists went into overdrive to paint any questioning of Special Counsel Robert Mueller and his investigative team’s professionalism as an illegitimate, desperate, and futile attempt to save Trump’s presidency. Former veteran NBC News anchor Tom Brokaw had some especially harsh words for Fox News’s recent coverage of FBI corruption, claiming that the network “is on a jihad right now” against Mueller and his agents.
With the passage of the Republicans’ $1.5 trillion tax cut bill looming, most of Wednesday’s Morning Joe was devoted to portraying the legislation as not just bad policy (which would be par for the course on MSNBC), but a threat to America’s survival, prosperity, and democracy. “Conservative” co-host Joe Scarborough put on his Marxist cap to make the case that “the greatest threat to American-styled capitalism [is] income disparity.”
On Tuesday’s Morning Joe, co-host Mika Brzezinski once again publicly attacked the #MeToo movement and its core demand for absolute belief of women who make sexual misconduct allegations. In the context of discussing Al Franken’s announced resignation from the Senate, Brzezinski lamented about how “right now, any woman can say anything and a man’s career is ruined.” She also explicitly doubted the evidence pointing to Franken as a sexual harasser, stating that “the evidence is – just hang on there, calm down – is debatable.”
On Monday’s Morning Joe, co-host Joe Scarborough and his band of liberal misfits devoted a full segment of the show’s second hour to accusing Fox News journalists of trying to “inspire hatred that will lead to the killing of Americans.” How is Fox supposedly doing this? Well, in the minds of Scarborough and his fellow MSNBC pundits, Fox News hosts and guests who have compared Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of the Trump administration to an attempted “coup” and the FBI to the KGB are trying to inspire a Timothy-McVeigh-style attack on the Bureau through their heated rhetoric. Joe and company failed to explain how their own repeated comparisons of Trump to Soviet and communist mass-murderers like Joseph Stalin would be substantively different from what Fox’s commentators have said recently.
Instead of just having a panel packed to the hilt with liberal pundits, Friday’s Morning Joe brought on some conservative and right-leaning voices during their last half-hour, namely including Washington Examiner Commentary Editor Tim Carney and Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan. A significant portion of their discussion centered around Thursday’s New York Times piece that concluded that President Trump has lied almost six times more than former President Obama even though Trump has spent less than one-eighth of Obama’s time in office.
On Thursday’s Morning Joe, the show’s liberal panel once again rallied to the defense of Robert Mueller in response to recent calls by Republican House representatives for the former FBI director’s special counsel division to be officially investigated for serious political conflicts of interest that have been revealed within it by the reporting of a variety of different news outlets.
On Tuesday’s MSNBC Live with Katy Tur, former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson was brought on to talk about the significance of the #MeToo movement and its role in fostering the current climate of seemingly ubiquitous allegations of sexual misconduct allegations against a slew of prominent politicians and media figures. In spite of weeks of equivocation and doubts being expressed about accusations against Democratic Senator Al Franken by a wide variety of MSNBC hosts and guests, including Tur herself, Carlson and Tur pretended to be righteous feminist crusaders for the right of all women to be believed and defended, regardless of the party or political affiliation of the accuser or accused.
On Tuesday’s MSNBC Live with Katy Tur, former George W. Bush White House Ethics Lawyer Richard Painter was brought on as a guest to discuss growing concerns among journalists and some within the Trump administration that there are serious problems with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian “collusion.”
On MSNBC Live with Katy Tur, the eponymous host followed up Monday’s White House press briefing by directly responding to Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders’s assertion that some members of the U.S. press are “purposefully misleading the American people.”
On Monday’s Morning Joe, New York Times Chief White House Correspondent Peter Baker was welcomed onto the panel to discuss his and his colleagues’ latest report about President Trump’s TV news-watching habits. In the course of discussing the piece, MSNBC National Affairs Analyst John Heilemann made a point of bringing up how Trump’s favorite nightly news show to hate-watch is, reportedly, CNN Tonight with Don Lemon. Heilemann tried and failed to get Baker to pin Trump’s dislike of Lemon on the President’s supposed hatred of African-American people before turning to Princeton Professor Eddie Glaude Jr., the show’s only black panelist, for backup. Glaude did not explicitly agree with Heilemann, but was clearly amused by Heilmann’s “slightly devilish” suggestion.
On Friday’s Morning Joe, the MSNBC show’s hosts and guests spent most of their broadcast mourning the announced resignation of Minnesota Senator Al Franken from Congress in the wake of over half a dozen allegations of sexual assault against him. In a stunning display of hypocrisy, MSNBC’s liberal morning pundits went to extraordinary lengths to cast doubt on the women who have accused Franken of sexual misconduct, violating the network’s own oft-repeated standards for Republican and conservative politicians.
Clearly inspired by veteran NBC journalist Tom Brokaw’s sermon warning of the dangers of “rushing to judgement” on the over half-dozen different charges of sexual harassment against Democratic Senator Al Franken, both Andrea Mitchell and Washington Post Deputy Editorial Page Editor Ruth Marcus rode to the rescue to back him up.
On Thursday’s Morning Joe, the show’s liberal panelists were still reeling from the aftermath of President Trump’s speech yesterday publicly pledging to uphold Jerusalem’s status as the capital of Israel. MSNBC’s morning pundits were not upset at the violent protests being orchestrated by Palestinian authorities though. Instead, they blamed Trump for “setting the Middle East on fire.”