A transcript is below but you really, really have to watch the video of New York Times columnist Tom Friedman on Tuesday's Morning Joe begging the viewers to vote Democrat in the midterms to get a full sense of his angst. His obvious desperation was written all over his face and was so over the top as to cause him to drop any pretense of non-partisanship (as if he had any) and urge everyone who could hear him to go full out Democrat in the midterm elections in order to put a check on President Donald Trump.
Friedman doesn't quite break out into the territory of Martha Raddatz's tears on Election Night, but he sure seems close to doing so. In fact, after watching his performance, it is not hard to imagine Friedman soaking a towel with his tears of despair if the Democrats do not win the House this November. Here he is:
Look, these midterms are soon to be upon us and I only have one piece of advice for people. You have to vote for a Democrat.
Please vote Democrat or I will lose my mind! Please! Please! PLEASE! Mika obviously agreed, so thanks for that Democrat affirmation, Mika. They continued:
FRIEDMAN: because and I say that as someone who is you know I have a lot of very conservative leanings on a lot of issues. I'm from free trade I'm a pro-globalization, pro-business but the fact is, John, the worst Democrat running for Congress or the Senate today is better than the best Republican because the best Republicans except those who are tragically dying or retiring simply will not stand up to this man.
Let us take a brief pause here and look at what Friedman actually wrote in his September 13, 2008 column about one of those "best" Republicans he is now shedding crocodile tears over. John McCain who was then running against Friedman's beloved Barack Obama:
I dwell on this issue because it is symbolic of the campaign that John McCain has decided to run. It’s a campaign now built on turning everything possible into a cultural wedge issue — including even energy policy, no matter how stupid it makes the voters and no matter how much it might weaken America.
...Now the same guy, who would not sell his soul to win his party’s nomination, is ready to sell every piece of his soul to win the presidency.
...McCain has decided to play the culture-war card. Obama may be a bit professorial, but at least he is trying to unite the country to face the real issues rather than divide us over cultural differences.
But that was then and this now. And back to today's Friedman, who agonized over the horrible threat of the Trumpocalypse which to him means going Democrat all the way in November:
And if you see the norms that he is violating. The way he is trashing some of our most cherished institutions. Things like the FBI, the Justice Department. The spreading of conspiracy theories from the bully pulpit of the White House that is a threat to the very fabric of our society and the very fabric of our democracy.
How dare Trump or anybody else criticize in any way our cherished FBI and the Justice Department which are absolutely infallible! They would never do anything nefarious such as spying on campaigns. Just ask Lisa Page or Peter Strzok about how above politics those organizations are, Tom:
FRIEDMAN: So I'm approaching this election coming up unlike any other election. I care about these issues but for me it's not about gun control, it's not about abortion, it's not about high taxes and low taxes. It's about whether you can get a lever of power that can restrain this man for the next two years because the man sitting in the Oval Office today is the greatest threat to our democracy and I will just add one other thing which people need to remember. We have not had a crisis yet. We've not had a real crisis except the crises Donald Trump has created. Wait till we have a real crisis and you have a president who cannot be believed sitting in the Oval Office. Then you will really see the true impact of all of this line all of this undermining of institutions.