Morning Joe didn't just pour ice-cold water on Joe Biden's campaign on Wednesday. It unleashed a veritable Niagara of negativity about Uncle Joe's presidential prospects today. Joe Scarborough led off with this stunning assertion:
"I have yet to talk to a Democratic activist or a Democratic fundraiser who is excited about Joe Biden getting in the race. I'll take it a step further. I've been surprised, but almost every Democrat I have spoken with is concerned that this is going to end badly for Joe Biden, and that he should not get into the race."
MSNBC's John Heilemann echoed Scarborough's somber take, saying that those who like Biden the most are "concerned about what's about to happen to him." That sounds ominous. They should just say he's in danger of being this year's "Jeb!"
This isn't some kind of pro-Trump, Republican hot take. Was Morning Joe giving its honest take on Biden's prospects, or was it talking him down out of a preference for another Democratic candidate? A hint could come from this Scarborough comment:
"It is hard to see Joe Biden stirring up the type of excitement as, say, you know, Kamala Harris did in her introduction, or that Mayor Pete is doing every day.
And we've noted that the show is gaga for Buttigieg.
If you're a Biden aide, you might not want to share this Morning Joe segment with Uncle Joe--unless you believe it could serve as "bulletin-board material" to fire him up!
Note: Willie Geist did hold out a glimmer of hope for Biden, saying that although he's heard a lot of the same pessimism the others expressed, "a lot of people are going to look at this race and say, who can beat Donald Trump? Who ends the Trump administration? And they may decide it's Joe Biden."
Here's the transcript.
6:15 am EDT
JOE SCARBOROUGH: I have yet to talk to a Democratic activist or a Democratic fundraiser who is excited about Joe Biden getting in the race. And, I'll take it a step further, and I've been surprised, but almost every Democrat, to a person, that I have spoken with is concerned that this is going to end badly for Joe Biden, and that he should not get into the race. And that is something I have heard repeatedly over the past several months. What about you?
JOHN HEILEMANN: Well, I think yes. I think that's consistent with what a lot of people who report on politics and are tuned into this stuff have been hearing, Joe, including me. I would say that among people who are close to the Vice-President, and people who consider themselves fans of Joe Biden, people who would be happy to live in an America where Joe Biden was the President, those are, may be the constituency that is most concerned about what's about to happen to him . . . I think you're right to say, first of all, among activists, there's not a hue and cry, and obviously activists are not the whole of the Democratic party, but there's a long chunk of yardage between now and the first votes, and there's not a lot of activists who are like crying out for Joe Biden. And among people who like him most, and have his best interests at heart, you hear a pronounced sense of--I wouldn't say exactly fear--concern that this might not go all that well.
. . .
SCARBOROUGH: There is a negative dynamic set into this campaign. And it is hard to see Joe Biden stirring up the type of excitement as, say, you know, Kamala Harris did in her introduction, or that Mayor Pete is doing every day. So the question is, how does he change the dynamic? He's used to being treated well by the press. He's always been treated well by the press. Things may get much more difficult in this competitive Democratic primary.