For Criticizing Trump on Ukraine, Scarborough Suddenly Hails Bolton as 'Patriot'

October 15th, 2019 12:23 PM

Late last month, we noted Joy Reid's MSNBC show heaping surprising praise on, of all people, Richard Nixon. His good deed in the show's view was having resigned the presidency rather than going through the impeachment process.

Today's Morning Joe offered up another example of what we at NewsBusters label "Sudden Respect," the phenomenon in which a person formerly despised by the liberal media suddenly earns its respect by doing something to liberal liking.

Joe Scarborough has been a fierce critic of John Bolton, as illustrated here, here, and here. Scarborough actually excoriated President Trump's appointment of Bolton as his national security adviser as "a fitting coda to conservatism’s failures."

But suddenly this morning, Scarborough overflowed with praise for Bolton, saying he would be putting his photo up on his wall next to that of Robert Mueller, and repeatedly referring to Bolton as a "patriot."

So what did Bolton do to turn Scarborough's scorn into such fawning admiration? Reports say that in her testimony to congressional committees yesterday, Fiona Hill, a former adviser to President Trump on Russia, said that Bolton branded the Trump administration's Ukraine policy a "drug deal."



Scarborough acknowledged his about-face on Bolton, facetiously saying "I've always been a big John Bolton fan, as everybody on Morning Joe knows." Again, as the record shows, Scarborough has been anything but.

Not only did Scarborough praise Bolton, he would brook no criticism of him, reprimanding Ron Fournier when he referred to Bolton as an "egomaniac."

Scarborough is not the only liberal media member to use the p-word to praise Republicans who turn on the Trump administration. On his Reliable Sources CNN show this past Sunday, Brian Stelter described GOP members who criticize President Trump on Ukraine as "patriotic Republicans."

Here's the transcript.

Morning Joe
6:01 am EDT

JOE SCARBOROUGH: I really think that I’m going to need to find a spot in my kitchen --

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: No, you're not doing this --

SCARBOROUGH: Next to my Mueller picture and I’m going to put John Bolton’s next to it.

MIKA: Nope, no.

SCARBOROUGH: Because anybody that can come out with a quote like that, which is, hey, how ya doing?
MIKA: You’re backing into the news again.

SCARBOROUGH: It’s the only way to do it. 

WILLIE GEIST: It's how we do it, Mika, you know that.

SCARBOROUGH: First of all, you can talk about the hand grenade, but how about the declaration immediately when he hears about the quid pro quo? He said, I’m not going to be part of Mr. Sondland’s and Mr. Mulvaney and Mr. Giuliani’s drug deal. We’ve heard that before. But go ahead, Willie. That’s pretty amazing, isn’t it?

GEIST: Well, yeah. That’s from the testimony from Fiona Hill yesterday, extraordinary testimony that we’ll walk through. We  got a look at some of it from behind closed doors before Congress. Where she reported that the National Security Adviser John Bolton said, "I want nothing to do with this drug deal, as he called it, between Rudy Giuliani and the Ukrainians. You’ll remember, of course, that John Bolton resigned or was fired, depending on who you believe over this question.

SCARBOROUGH: Yeah, I’ve always been a big John Bolton fan, as everybody on Morning Joe knows [laughter ensues.] 

RON FOURNIER: And John Bolton, you talk about somebody who I’d be worried about if I'm: Hell hath no fury like an egomaniac scorned. This [Bolton's "drug deal" comment] would be some payback here.

SCARBOROUGH: Well by the way, don't call him an egomaniac. 

MIKA: He's going to put the picture [of Bolton] in our kitchen.

SCARBOROUGH: It's going to be on my wall. He is a patriot! Actually, though, this actually is a very clarifying moment, isn't it, David Ignatius. A very clarifying moment that there are patriots out there . . . Here’s a great insight into what a patriot looks like even if you disagree with him. It's somebody who puts America first before their president, or before their ideology.

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