Ouch: this one's going to leave a mark.  Arkansas Republican Senator Tom Cotton has said that "John Kerry acted like Pontius Pilate, he washed his hands" on crucial issues in the Iran deal and left it to the IAEA to negotiate secret side deals with Iran on them.

Cotton made his remarks on today's Morning Joe.  It might be a mark of the regard, or lack thereof, in which Kerry is held that no one on the panel rose to his defense.  Harold Ford, Jr. was given the floor immediately after Cotton spoke, and blithely inquired only if Kerry would be asked about these issues in his Senate testimony. A bit later in the show, Dem Sen. Tim Kaine appeared.  Kaine presumably either watched or was briefed on Cotton's statement, but made not a peep to push back on the Pontius Pilate analogy.



On the heels of the decision by Monday’s NBC Nightly News to heavily inject politics into the murder of 32-year-old Kathryn Steinle allegedly by an illegal immigrant, Friday’s CBS This Morning used the issue of sanctuary cities to somehow spin it as part of the immigration debate that’s “a tough issue for Republicans.” Correspondent Jan Crawford explained that sanctuary cities “have long been controversial” even though “[t]he thinking originally was they were a way to support immigrants, get them help if they got involved with minor offenses” but with Steinle’s murder “and immigration a contentious issue on the campaign, many politicians now are demanding change.”



Free advice for Chris Matthews: Now that your wife is running for Congress, you might want to avoid the nasty on-air name-calling of Republicans with whom you disagree.



During a segment about Twitter, NBC’s Late Night host Seth Meyers on Thursday night praised Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif’s reaction to series of tweets from Republican Senator Tom Cotton (Ark.) as “well-done” and admitting that he was “very impressed” with Zarif’s use of “reverse criticism.” 



One of the first rules of genuine comedy is that to be funny, a joke or skit needs to have some basis in truth.

On that primary measurement, the cold open on "Saturday Night Live" last night failed miserably on so many fronts, it's hard to know where to begin. Its most offensive aspect is its portrayal of a Democrat inflicting violence on three Republicans to the audience's pleausre. It is impossible to imagine the program putting on a skit showing Ronald Reagan doing to the same thing to Ted Kennedy — who, in an objectively treasonous act, sought the Soviet Union's help in the 1984 presidential election for the purpose of defeating Reagan.



Kim Messick believes America since its founding has suffered three serious breaches of political trust, the last of which is ongoing and results from “the readiness of Republicans to violate long-standing norms of institutional conduct in order to advance a highly divisive, intensely partisan agenda” that’s implacably hostile to most functions of government. Messick touches on Tom Cotton’s letter to the Iranian mullahs and John Boehner’s invitation to Benjamin Netanyahu as recent examples of the congressional GOP’s “disregard [of] any limitation on their pursuit of conservative purity” as well as of “its own hermetic vision of the conservative ‘cause’– a cause that transcends national boundaries. Its adherents find it easier to cooperate with the leader of Israel’s Likud Party than with their Democratic colleagues in the American Congress.”



Filing his report from the North Lawn of the White House on Monday's Erin Burnett OutFront, CNN's Jim Acosta uncritically parroted President Obama's falsehood regarding 47 Republican senators' open letter to the government of Iran. 



Speaking from Switzerland on Monday morning regarding the continuing nuclear negotiations between the United States and Iran, CBS News reporter Margaret Brennan used the term “hardliners” to equate Republicans who oppose a potential deal to those within the Iranian regime. 



Imagine the audacity of a freshman senator presuming to speak out forcefully on foreign affairs!  What?  You thought we were alluding to Barack Obama, who after less than a year in the Senate and with no discernible foreign policy credentials began a campaign to become Commander-in-Chief?

No, no, no!  We were talking about Tom Cotton, of course!  On today's Morning Joe, Mika Brzezinski castigated Cotton as a "toddler" and a "fool" for writing that letter to Iran.  For good measure, Al Hunt said that, like America, Iran has its "crazies" too. Did Hunt just equate Republican senators who sign a letter to those in Iran who have killed Americans and others around the world with impunity? So who's crazy now?



Speaking to Senator Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) about his recent letter to the leadership of Iran, Face the Nation moderator Bob Schieffer provocatively asked his guest: “Do you plan to check with the North Koreans to make sure that they know that any deal has to be approved by the Congress?” 



Appearing on the Thursday edition of MSNBC’s The Last Word, former Vermont Democratic Governor and MSNBC contributor Howard Dean put forth the analogy that the author of the letter sent to Iran in Republican Senator Tom Cotton (Ark.) is like to far-left actress and activist Jane Fonda visiting North Vietnam during the Vietnam War.



Mika Brzezinski has never been short on hyperbolic statements when it comes to Republicans. But she outdid herself in her Wednesday Morning Joe rant on their letter to Iran. She claimed “Senator Tom Cotton either wants to help out Iran, as Hillary Clinton said, or he doesn't understand politics...and foreign policy.”
 
Joe Scarborough was quick to label the outrageous remark as "deeply offensive," but Brzezinski doubled down, insisting that "they either wanted to embolden Iran or at least help them or they just were delivering a self-inflicted wound to themselves, with the collateral damage being the President and Iran, possibly. But it was idiotic, really stupid, totally out of step, and as damaging as it gets. Congratulations, Republicans."