Mark Finkelstein is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.
Lives in Oak Island, North Carolina
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When it comes to having a spokesman for Trump-Hater Nation, Nancy Pelosi, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and the rest of the loony left must be thrilled. In Joe Scarborough, they have someone who gets three hours of TV time every weekday morning to beam Trump hatred to the masses. Doing his bit on today's Morning Joe, Scarborough sided with Pelosi in proclaiming the wall "immoral."
Here's what passes for humor in the age of CNN Trump-hatred: joking about whether President Trump meant to say that his hospital visit to victims of the Vegas massacre caused many deaths. New Day devoted a segment to Trump's Daily Caller interview of yesterday. Berman: "This is what the President said: you had so many people killed and so badly wounded, because I went to the hospital—I don't think he meant they were killed because he went to the hospital. But he did go to the hospital."
The Morning Joe panel devotes a segment to looking/hoping for signs of a break from President Trump by congressional Republicans. New York Times Washington bureau chief Elisabeth Bumiller encapsulates the sentiment: "We're always looking for signs of a break with Republicans on the Hill—a public break—from Trump."
On Morning Joe, Joe Scarborough says, "we [gestures toward Mika] saw him for 12 years behind closed doors. Never, ever, once—I'll say under oath, I'll put into an affidavit—never once heard him say anything close to being racially insensitive. Never once!"
Sounding more like a feminist fan than a "correspondent," Kasie Hunt has enthused over the proliferation of women candidates in the 2020 Dem field. Appearing on today's Morning Joe, MSNBC correspondent Hunt said it was a "real victory" that the fact that Harris is the third woman [along with Elizabeth Warren and Tulsi Gabbard] to have announced her candidacy is "unremarkable." Sounds like "correspondent" Hunt is cheering a victory for Team Woman.
On Morning Joe, MSNBC political analyst Rick Tyler takes obvious pleasure in the breaking news of Roger Stone's arrest, saying: "Roger Stone like Donald Trump is a political con man whose showman shtick has finally caught up with him . . . He's known for dirty tricks, and I think a lifetime of this shtick has finally caught up with him."
CNN isn't stopping at making veiled accusations of witness intimidation against President Trump with respect to Michael Cohen. Instead, the network is doing so in the most dramatic terms. On New Day this morning, CNN played a clip from The Godfather II in which the mob, in order to intimidate a witness at a Senate hearing, has brought the witness's brother into the audience. After the clip rolled, CNN commentator broke out the old mob threat: "what the President of the United States and his lawyer are basically doing is saying, nice family you got there. Be a shame if anything happened to them."
Mike Barnicle was conducting a humdrum conversation about the shutdown with Dem Sen. Sherrod Brown on today's Morning Joe when—out of the blue—Barnicle asked this bizarre question: "Let me ask you: do you think that Donald J. Trump presents a clear and present danger to our democracy?"
On Ari Melber's MSNBC show, MSNBC contributor Eleanor Clift praises the refusal of Democrats to negotiate with Republicans on the government shutdown, saying, "the Democrats are defending a principle here, that you don't negotiate with terrorists when they're holding hostages."
Saying that he blames the Democrats as much as the Republicans for the current DC disarray, Tom Brokaw, appearing on today's Morning Joe, said, "you've got the young people running through the halls, who are the new members of Congress, who are conducting pep rallies every day." Brokaw described the Dems as being "driven hard by the left."
On Joy Reid's show, MSNBC legal analyst Maya Wiley says that although the Buzzfeed allegation that President Trump ordered Michael Cohen to lie about Russian collusion has been debunked by the Mueller investigation: "what we are hearing in this does not mean that we know that there won't in the future be corroborated evidence of Donald Trump having knowledge of and in some way being part of what could be, could be -- and I'm speculating -- could be a conspiracy to suborn perjury. That is a possibility. We don't know."
As we noted before, for over two years now Morning Joe has been broadly hinting that Rudy Giuliani has a drinking problem. The show was back at it today, with Willie Geist, Mika Brzezinski, Joe Scarborough and Katty Kay all unsubtly suggesting that Rudy had been drinking before his CNN interview with Chris Cuomo last night.
On New Day, Alisyn Camerota asked why President Trump hasn't accepted a deal that would end the partial government shutdown. Co-host John Berman, referring to a statement by Ann Coulter, offered an explanation, saying he had "a sign, a word from up above." CNN commentator John Avlon interjected: "whoa, whoa: directionally off!"
The liberal media accused President Trump of "dodging" and "evading" Jeannine Pirro's question as to whether he'd ever worked for Russia. Yesterday, Trump made a flat denial, saying, "I never worked for Russia." But that didn't stop MSNBC's John Heilemann on Morning Joe from ripping Trump, saying: "The fact that he said yesterday, I've never worked for Russia, just made you think of [unintelligble] our two previous Presidents embroiled in potential impeachments: Bill Clinton and Richard Nixon saying, Bill Clinton: I never had sexual relations with that woman. And Richard Nixon: I am not a crook. Turned out they were lying. Maybe Donald Trump is, too."
Mika Brzezinski framed it as a "worry," but her statement can also be seen as giving advice [unintentionally, one would hope] to America's enemies, encouraging them to seize the current moment to act against us. On today's Morning Joe, Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic imagined America's adversaries saying "we don't know what the hell they're going to do, because this President is completely unpredictable." Responded Mika: "I would take it a step further, and worry that we look weak. And that this is the moment that anybody with ill will has to act."
An article in TheWeek.com entitled "The real lesson of Jeff Bezos' divorce drama? Soak the rich" argues that the Bezos divorce "is a good piece of evidence in the case for confiscatory top marginal tax rates."
On CNN's New Day this morning, Van Jones—host of his own CNN show—commenting on controversial statements on race made by Republican congressman Steve King of Iowa, identified King as representing . . . California. Said Jones: "I'm embarrassed. I mean, I'm raising my family in California. I'm embarrassed that Californians have sent him back [to Congress.]"
On CNN's New Day, co-host Alisyn Camerota asks, regarding the partial government shutdown, "aren't Democrats to blame here as well?" She calls out Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer for refusing to make a counter-offer when VP Pence asked them for one at the conclusion of a White House meeting yesterday.
Appearing on Rachel Maddow's MSNBC show last night, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez accused President Trump of "racist and violent rhetoric" regarding illegal immigration. As a result, said AOC: "We're talking about people feeling unsafe. And no one should feel unsafe in the United States of America, and that includes our amazing, and beautiful, and productive, immigrant community."
MSNBC guest Mark Thompson thinks Trump supporters are "gullible" and "acting against their own interest." Right. Because if you weren't so clueless, you'd be a huge Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez fan, eagerly awaiting the coming socialist nirvana.