Bozell & Graham Column: Joe Scarborough Goes Off the Deep End

In July, MSNBC host Joe Scarborough showily announced to Stephen Colbert on CBS that he was leaving the Republican Party. No one at the RNC flew a flag at half-mast. The announcement was at least a decade behind the reality. In 2006, he called President Bush an idiot. Last week, he did the same with Trump. There is a consistency here from the man who craves attention.

Scarborough is the MSNBC equivalent of David Gergen, someone always twiddling his spit-covered finger in the wind and switching his allegiances depending on which option benefits him the most. Then he announces a new position with a big “Look at me!” flourish. 

Scarborough can boast egotistically just like the president he despises. In a Politico interview with Glenn Thrush in 2016, he actually said “when I walk into a Southern Baptist Church – I can be anywhere in the world, I could be, like, smoking pot when I'm going down, like, the center aisle. It doesn't matter. People still know I'm one of them, instinctively.”

In the early days of the Republican primary race, from mid-2015 into the early contests, Joe Scarborough was a Trumper. In January 2016, he proclaimed at the sight of Trump’s plane landing in Des Moines, “It was like the Pope had landed with the Middle East peace pact to end 3,000 years of war.” He touted Trump’s “gut instinct and strength,” and  even acted bashful with Hugh Hewitt on the radio and refused to reject Hewitt’s suggestion that it would “make a lot of sense” if he was named Trump’s running mate to help win the Florida vote. 

But soon, Trump would become the second coming of both Hitler and Stalin. By June of 2016, Scarborough scalded Trump, for he “had been talking about a Muslim registry. He's even talked in the past about making Muslims carry cards. Sounds a lot like Nazi Germany.” 

No Muslim registry ever materialized, but Scarborough’s loathing has continued, and deepened. On November 30, he claimed “people close to [Trump] during the campaign told me had early stages of dementia.”  

On December 22, 2017, the headline on the Washington Post Opinions email sounded like a serious left-wing attack: “The stench of Trump’s self-dealing.” Was it Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren? No, it was Scarborough, who proclaimed “the stench of self-dealing that engulfs all things Trump. Like autocrats across the world, the 45th American president has perfected the art of the self-deal.”

This is hilarious coming from Scarborough. In his pro-Trump phase, he provided cover when Trump refused to release his tax returns, asking, “Why are his taxes relevant?” 

Then, on December 29, Scarborough doubled down in the Post, suggesting Trump was guilty of a foreign policy based on “malignant idiocy” and was transforming into a “tyrannical president” with a compliant Republican Congress. Trump even “used Stalinist barbs to attack the free press.” proving only that thin-skinned Scarborough cannot discern the difference between assault and mockery.  

Scarborough quoted Winston Churchill’s “Gathering Storm” speech. Yes, indeed, but the wicked threat was now Trump: “The malice of the wicked was reinforced by the weakness of the virtuous.”      

This man is seemingly blinded by rage. He claimed “America’s dangerous retreat from the world continues” while neglecting to mention the crushing of ISIS, or the bombing of a Syrian airfield (which seemed to end Assad’s chemical warfare on his own people), or pledges of arms assistance to Ukraine (so much for being Putin’s plaything).

Scarborough shouldn’t be attacking Trump or anyone else for basing their political analysis on emotional bluster instead of facts. He specializes in it.  

Brent Bozell's picture

Tim Graham's picture

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