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.”
Watch the brief exchange for yourself:
SCARBOROUGH: David Ignatius, I know you want to get a question in on Michael Schmidt, but before you do that, I want to ask you about what is happening in Iran. Uh, in, in this morning's column, you have a fascinating line where you say that Tehran, when you visited it a few years back in 2013, was somewhere between -- was a mix, uh, between Pyongyang and Los Angeles, uh, which is something really that we saw in 2009. What I was struck by in 2009, during the protests, was the fact that you had a red state Iran and you had a blue state Iran. It was split down the middle. Red state Iran wanted to keep the mullahs in charge. Blue state Iran wanted to move Iran into the 20th century so they could move into the 21st century. Uh, and you say, because it is so divided, that this is a regime that just can't keep winning. They can't keep pushing back the tides of history. Talk about it.
IGNATIUS: They -- so, what has been fascinating this last week is that, is that red state Iran–which loves the mullahs–and blue state Iran–young, secular, uh, wanting change, supporting President Hassan Roussani [sic], Rouhani–have both been in the streets, uh, you know, in conservative cities like Mashhad, in the elite areas of Tehran–same thing, same phenomenon. So, uh, Iran has converged, I think, in a frustration with the regime's inability to deliver. And that's, that’s why this is important.
Of course, Scarborough failed to explain precisely how Republicans and conservatives in America are in any way similar to a country whose sharia law-based Islamic government not only executes gay men and allows for marrying girls as young as nine, but even bans women from riding bicycles in public and going to beach volleyball tournaments.
Today was certainly not the first time that the liberal media has casually compared those on the political right in this country to Islamic terrorists and theocrats. Just three days ago on ABC’s The View, co-host Joy Behar continued the show’s tradition of comparing Republicans to jihadis by arguing that Trump was leading America down a similar political path as the “autocratic regime” of Iran.
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