Chris Reeves was an intern in the Media Research Center's News Analysis Division.
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On Thursday’s Morning Joe, host Joe Scarborough claimed that anonymous sources “close to” the President “during the campaign” have said that then-candidate Trump was exhibiting symptoms of the “early stages of dementia.” Scarborough and co-host Mika Brzezinski have referred to Trump as being literally insane and therefore dangerous to the United States on innumerable occasions.
As Wednesday’s Morning Joe was just starting the second hour of its broadcast, the news broke that Matt Lauer had been fired from NBC for his “inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.” The MSNBC morning show’s panelists went out of their way to praise Lauer as a man of “class” and “dignity” who was a “loved” “mentor” and “friend” to those who have worked for the Today show, where Lauer was an anchor for two decades.
Tuesday’s Morning Joe opened with sixteen solid minutes of discussion about the most pressing news story of the day – President Trump calling Senator Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas” yesterday at a ceremony honoring Navajo World War II veterans. The show’s liberal panelists not only wholeheartedly swallowed Warren’s argument that the word “Pocahontas” is a racial slur, but also came up with an elaborate theory that Trump was not simply making fun of Warren, but actually trying to send a “coded” appeal to the “white nationalist,” “racist elements” of his base. Mika Brzezinski also personally attacked White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders for “shill[ing]” for Trump’s “racism” and “bigotry” and suggested that she was a bad mother who shouldn’t be able to face her children.
Nancy Pelosi received near-universal condemnation for her comments on Sunday’s Meet The Press when she praised accused sexual harasser and fellow Democratic House Representative John Conyers as an “icon.” Even CNN’s Chris Cillizza, who is not exactly pro-Republican, called Pelosi’s remarks “catastrophically bad.”
And yet, on Monday’s Morning Joe, co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski were inspired to double-down on Pelosi’s comments, repeatedly declaring that Conyers is an “icon” and thanking Pelosi for “speaking the truth.” Neither host was upset by the California congresswoman’s dismissal of the truthfulness of Conyers’s alleged victims.
On Monday’s Morning Joe, host Joe Scarborough and rest of the show’s liberal pundits expressed their extreme frustration with President Trump for one of his Thanksgiving weekend tweets where he criticized CNN International as being “a major source of (Fake) news.” With absolutely no evidence, Scarborough came to the conclusion that Trump’s comments were intended to encourage “tyrants” to “jail” or “do worse” to American reporters because the press “won't kiss [Trump’s] ass every day on the air.”
On Wednesday’s Morning Joe, while discussing President Trump’s remarks to reporters yesterday on the White House lawn, NBC News Capitol Hill correspondent Kasie Hunt decided to do an impromptu campaign ad for Democratic senatorial candidate Doug Jones, who is Roy Moore’s opponent in the Alabama special election. Part of Hunt’s pitch involved the fact that Jones is best known for prosecuting the perpetrators of the infamous 1963 Birmingham church bombing that killed four black girls. Co-host Mika Brzezinski instantly saw a connection between this piece of information and Trump’s earlier claim to journalists that Jones is “soft on crime.” From this realization, she concluded that Trump must in some way be okay with, or at least not that concerned by, blowing up and killing children in churches for racial reasons.
In spite of repeated proclamations from MSNBC pundits that anyone expressing a scintilla of skepticism about any claims of sexual misconduct must therefore support that gross misbehavior, MSNBC’s best and brightest repeatedly broke this self-imposed standard over the past week vis-a-vis the Al Franken sexual assault allegations. Morning Joe added to this shamelessly hypocritical coverage on Tuesday, questioning if the latest Franken accuser can “prove” her accusation that Franken shoved his tongue in her mouth. The hosts also waffled on whether or not Franken should suffer any serious consequences for his alleged sexual crimes, with co-host Willie Geist wondering whether Franken should be treated as a “pariah” and “have his life ruined and thrown out.”
Last week, New York Times columnist Michelle Goldberg wrote an op-ed calling for Al Franken to resign in light of radio broadcaster Leeann Tweeden’s claims that the Democratic senator sexually assaulted her multiple times while on a USO tour to the Middle East to entertain American troops back in 2006. However, on Monday, Goldberg published another piece retracting her original call for Franken to be replaced. She primarily based her new argument on the grounds that Franken’s support for “women’s rights” should preclude him from being subjected to feminists’ purported standards for alleged sexual abusers. Goldberg also fretted that getting rid of the senator at this point would set a dangerous precedent that would “risk unilateral disarmament” for Democrats in the political arena.
Given the extensive coverage of the allegations of criminal sexual misconduct against Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore, you may be wondering how liberal journalists have been covering the multiple accusations of sexual assault against Democratic Senator Al Franken. Well, if you were expecting unreserved condemnation and calls for Franken to resign his seat, you would be pretty disappointed, at least if you were watching MSNBC.
On Monday’s Morning Joe, co-host Mika Brzezinski finally lost it with Hillary Clinton. Last Friday, Brzezinski condemned Bill Clinton as a sexual “predator.” This week, Mika was extremely upset at Hillary Clinton’s “hypocrisy” in going after Trump as a “sexual assaulter” while simultaneously defending her husband from similar or more serious charges of sexual assault and rape. Brzezinski told Clinton in no uncertain terms that she “needs to stop talking about this topic.”
On Thursday’s Deadline: White House, host Nicolle Wallace and MSNBC national affairs analyst John Heilemann took Sean Hannity’s statement that “the people of Alabama” “need to know the truth” concerning the Roy Moore accusations as evidence that Fox News supports people who “prey in a sexual manner on teenage girls.”
On Wednesday’s Morning Joe, the panel breathed a collective sigh of relief over the news that during yesterday’s House Judiciary Committee hearing, Attorney General Jeff Sessions rebuffed the notion that he would launch a special prosecutor’s investigation against the Clintons for their alleged corrupt conduct related to the Russian acquisition of Uranium One. The liberal pundits proceeded to dismiss the story as a “dumb conspiracy theory” that has “been debunked” “many times.”
On Tuesday morning’s MSNBC Live with Stephanie Ruhle, the eponymous host brought on Washington Post columnist and MSNBC contributor Matt Miller to discuss a New York Times piece calling attention to the fact that a current nominee to the federal judiciary did not disclose that he is married to a lawyer who works for the White House Counsel’s Office. Ironically, Ruhle herself failed to disclose that Miller was the Director of the Office of Public Affairs for Attorney General Eric Holder’s Department of Justice. Moreover, in the course of discussing the story, Ruhle couldn’t help but interject her bizarre complaints that Trump has been nominating too many “white,” “male” judges to the bench.
After hyperventilating about the latest Trump-Russia story and claiming that Donald Trump Jr. talking to Wikileaks and Julian Assange was yet more evidence of “collusion,” on Tuesday, the Morning Joe crew were horrified to learn of the possibility that the Justice Department might appoint a special prosecutor to investigate Bill and Hillary Clinton for engaging in pay-for-play corruption with the Russian government.
On Monday’s Morning Joe, the panel brought on liberal economist Jeffrey Sachs to talk about the Republican tax reform bill currently making its way through Congress. Somewhat predictably, Sachs used his platform to attack the plan as a form of “theft,” the “biggest heist in history,” and a plot by America’s “richest gazillionaires” to “bankrupt” the country for their own personal enrichment. Although the panelists repeatedly tried to get Sachs to say something sane about the Republican plan’s corporate tax cuts, he instead insisted on reverting to his talking points and never explained how letting people keep more of their own money is “theft.”
Friday’s Morning Joe was almost entirely focused on recent allegations reported by The Washington Post that Alabama Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore molested a 14 year-old girl in 1979. The entire panel took the claims at face value and lambasted Republicans for accompanying their condemnations of Moore’s alleged sexual crimes with the qualification "if true." The liberal pundits even tried to smear the entire Republican Party as being “divided over the question of pedophilia.”
On Wednesday’s Morning Joe, the panel brought on former DNC chair Donna Brazile to discuss her explosive new book alleging that the Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee unethically colluded to merge their operations in 2015 before the Democratic presidential primaries had even started. Although the hosts repeatedly pressed Brazile to affirm that the primaries were “rigged,” Brazile denied this. Nevertheless, she still reserved seriously harsh criticism for her party, describing the Clinton-DNC deal as “cancerous” and labeling the Clinton campaign an impenetrable “cult.”
On Tuesday’s MSNBC Live, host Katy Tur and New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof turned what was supposed to be a hard news segment on the North Korean nuclear crisis into a conspiratorial mess when they seriously posited that President Trump might launch a nuclear war that would kill millions of Koreans just to boost his domestic poll numbers.
In the aftermath of Sunday’s deadly mass shooting at a Baptist church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Morning Joe’s panel spent much of the broadcast repeatedly calling for gun control and trying to delegitimize the concept of gun ownership for the purpose of self-defense. At one point in the show, New York Times columnist Bret Stephens insisted that there wasn’t a “single instance” that conservatives could point to of anyone “us[ing] their guns to protect their liberties.” Bizarrely, Stephens had already forgotten that it was a citizen armed with a gun who stopped yesterday’s massacre from becoming even more horrendous.
On Friday’s Morning Joe, the liberal panel once again took issue with some of the President’s Twitter comments and portrayed them as evidence that Trump is a dangerous and “authoritarian dictator.” However, Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson really upped the ante today by ridiculously claiming that Trump “wants to run [America]” like Xi Jinping runs Communist China and host Joe Scarborough suggested that Trump wants to play “judge,” “jury,” and “executioner” in a manner similar to President of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte, who has admitted to extrajudicially killing criminal suspects.