Gingrich Schools Morning Joe Panel on Worsening Race Relations Under Obama

On Monday, the Morning Joe crew covered issues from Trump’s VP pick to the devastating murder of three police officers over the weekend. On the one hand, host Joe Scarborough praised Barack Obama for his “pitch perfect” tone in speeches following police shootings in Dallas and Baton Rouge. On the other hand, guest Newt Gingrich minced no words in his attack on collapsing race relations due to failed policies of the Obama Administration. The contrast was stark, as each portrayed the president in a very different light.

The show began with Scarborough lauding the president for his “pitch perfect” speech following the two most recent tragedies targeting police officers.

JOE SCARBOROUGH: Another terrible day, another unspeakable tragedy for law enforcement officers in America. Michael Steele, as the, my fellow Republican on the panel, I want to talk about President Obama and the way he reacted. He has been attacked from the left and from the right. No matter what he said. I have thought what he’s in speaking to Americans, I thought his tone over these last two tragedies, especially, I think it's been pitch perfect. I think especially -- and this is, I say this as someone who has been very critical of him post Paris and, and after a lot of other tragedies. I thought he was pitch perfect yesterday. 

It is unclear how many lives a “pitch perfect” speech saves. The panelists then reacted with gusto to a recent Trump tweet that attacked the president for his “lack of leadership” in the wake of Baton Rouge. Unsurprisingly, host Scarborough and liberal Mike Barnicle were up in arms over the accusation.

MIKE BARNICLE: That's ridiculous. 

JOE SCARBOROUGH: Mike, I’d like to know whose lack of leadership led to somebody, crazy, hateful person going out and shooting three people yesterday. Three police officers.

BRZEZINSKI: Can’t do that. Childish. 

SCARBOROUGH: What, what, what lack of leadership?

BARNICLE: We saw a clip from the president of the United States, no matter whether you're a Democrat or a Republican and that whether you voted for him or you didn’t, whether you like him or you don’t. You should be glad that he’s the president of the United States because he sets the right tone each time he appears in a situation like that. 

Contrast Scarborough’s mischaracterization of Obama’s “pitch perfect” performance and refusal to acknowledge any “lack of leadership” with Gingrich’s harsh critique of worsening race relations over the last eight years.

SCARBOROUGH: You had a statement talking about how a normal white American could never understand what it's like being black in America. You see what's happening in Baton Rouge. You see what's happening across the country. How do we move forward, especially on the issue of race? 

GINGRICH: Well, the risk of once again being divisive. As long as you have Barack Obama doing what he did over the last few years. You've had 7 1/2 years of a black president. 7 1/2 years of a black attorney general. Gallup report race relations are worse than any time in the last 17 years. Why? Because how often has he hit the police. He hit the police in Cambridge and he was wrong. He hit the police in Ferguson, he was wrong. He hit the police about Florida, he was wrong. At what point does the president have some obligation to say – you know there are two parts of this. One. We have got to better understand the experience of being black in America and in places like Chicago where 3,200 people have been killed in the Obama presidency, we better have a strategy that works. We don't. 

Finally, Scarborough circled back to Obama’s “pitch perfect” statements:

SCARBOROUGH: Let me ask you about Barack Obama’s statement yesterday and after Dallas. Don't you think he moved in the right direction?

GINGRICH: Yeah. Seven and a half years into his presidency, he began to realize now that we’ve had two massacres of policemen that maybe as president of the United States and leader of law and order in America, he should say something on behalf of law and order. I mean, that's fairly pathetic. 

Someone should tell the president that actions speak louder than words. We’ll give Newt the last word on that one.

View Full Transcript Here:

07-18-16 MSNBC Morning Joe
07:45:19 AM -  07:48:49 AM

JOE SCARBOROUGH: Let's bring in, I don't like the introduction. Let's bring on out a historic figure. The man that Nancy Reagan said finished Ronald Reagan's revolution. 

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: Uh-huh.

SCARBOROUGH: Newt Gingrich. 

BRZEZINSKI: He knows I'm mad at him. 

SCARBOROUGH: Mr. Speaker, how you doing?

BRZEZINSKI: Mr. Speaker, would you like a beer? 

NEWT GINGRICH: No, no, it’s a little too early in the morning. [Laughter] Why are you mad at me? 

BRZEZINSKI: Well, I thought your statements about screening people were really rough. That's why I'm mad at you. 

GINGRICH: They were tough. 

BRZEZINSKI: Yeah. They were tough and they were unrealistic and I think they were divisive. That's all. 

SCARBOROUGH: That was said in the form of a question. 

BRZEZINSKI: What do you think? I mean why’d you do that? 

SCARBOROUGH: Let him answer. 

GINGRICH: Well first of all, first of all, Hannity was asking me about immigrants. I absolutely believe you should screen every immigrant. Look at the Tunisian immigrant who just killed 84 people. Who by the way is never described as a Tunisian immigrant in France, in Nice. Look at the degree to which ISIS openly says we're sending people across the planet. And how often do you have to have people get killed? We're going to have to come up with a strategy and we’ve got to learn from the Israelis and we’ve got to learn from the European failure. I mean, the director of intelligence in France the day before Nice they released a statement from him that Europe is on the edge of a civil war. That's how bad he thinks it is. 

SCARBOROUGH: So—

GINGRICH: So why don’t we go down 10 or 15 more years to see if we can't re-create the European chaos. 

SCARBOROUGH: Well the European chaos, the European model has been disastrous and its been building for 20, 30 years. It's very interesting. You, though, when it comes to America and it comes to race, you've said some things that we’ve not only does Mika criticize, she also applauds. You had a statement talking about how a normal white American could never understand what it's like being black in America. You see what's happening in Baton Rouge. You see what's happening across the country. How do we move forward, especially on the issue of race? 

GINGRICH: Well, the risk of once again being divisive. As long as you have Barack Obama doing what he did over the last few years. You've had 7 1/2 years of a black president. 7 1/2 years of a black attorney general. Gallup report race relations are worse than any time in the last 17 years. Why? Because how often has he hit the police. He hit the police in Cambridge and he was wrong. He hit the police in Ferguson, he was wrong. He hit the police about Florida, he was wrong. At what point does the president have some obligation to say – you know there are two parts of this. One. We have got to better understand the experience of being black in America and in places like Chicago where 3,200 people have been killed in the Obama presidency, we better have a strategy that works. We don't. 

SCARBOROUGH: What is a strategy that works? 

GINGRICH: You start with New York City which has reduced the murder rate by 85% from where it was when Giuliani went in. Now nobody on the left wants to hear that. But you look at the number of thousands of people who would be alive today if Chicago had the New York strategy. 

SCARBOROUGH: Why don't they? 

GINGRICH: I think because they think it is too intrusive. It requires too many policemen. They don't want to spend the money on cops. Well you don't spend the money on cops, you spend the money on funerals. 

SCARBOROUGH: Let me ask you about Barack Obama’s statement yesterday and after Dallas. Don't you think he moved in the right direction?

GINGRICH: Yeah. 7 1/2 years into his presidency, he began to realize now that we’ve had two massacres of policemen that maybe as president of the United States and leader of law and order in America, he should say something on behalf of law and order. I mean, that's fairly pathetic. 

Tell the Truth 2016 NB Daily Convention Watch Campaigns & Elections 2016 Presidential 2016 Republican Convention MSNBC Morning Joe Video Mike Barnicle Joe Scarborough Mika Brzezinski Newt Gingrich Michael Steele
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