Tag Archives: Joe Scarborough

Parties change, politicians don’t

One of the nation’s more well-known Republicans has bolted his party. I’m going to presume for the purposes of this blog post that it’s because the Party of Lincoln has become the Party of Trump and Joe Scarborough no longer is comfortable with that association.

Scarborough — who says he’ll register as an independent — is now host of an MSNBC talk show, “Morning Joe,” which he co-hosts with Mika Brzezinski. They’ve been in the news of late, with Donald J. Trump tweeting some nasty comments about Brzezinski, who happens to be Scarborough’s fiancée. It’s complicated, yes?

But the Scarborough’s departure from the GOP is part of a trend that swings in both directions, involving both major parties. It happens when a particular political party veers into an dramatically different direction. Such is the case with the Republican Party that nominated an inexperienced entertainer as its presidential nominee who then has behaved like someone who is clueless about political decorum, norms and custom.

Oh, and he’s also someone who continues on the same insult and innuendo barrage that got him nominated and then elected.

Scarborough is no Republican In Name Only, although I’m sure the devoted Trumpkins out there will call him a RINO as often as possible. He once voted to impeach President Clinton when he was serving in the House of Representatives from Florida. He fancies himself as a serious conservative thinker and commentator. He joins a few other long time prominent Republicans who have left the party for essentially the same reason. The noted Washington Post columnist George Will is the most notable example.

Here in Texas, we’ve seen a dramatic shift in the other direction over many years as the state shifted from true blue to deep red. Democrats became Republicans because of the shift in Democratic Party ideology. I can think of several individuals: former state Rep. Warren Chisum of Pampa; the late former Gov. John Connally; former Gov. Rick Perry. They all were Democrats when they entered public life. They are far from the only Texas Democrats who would no longer feel comfortable with the party of their political “birth.”

So, now it’s Scarborough who’s bolted the GOP.

My hunch? We’re going to see more political out-migration.

Memo to Melania: Rein in your husband

Dear Melania …

I hope you don’t object to my addressing you by your first name. I mean no disrespect. To my point …

I greeted your call for an end to cyber bullying with a bit of skepticism. My first reaction, along with that of millions of other Americans, was that you need to start at home in that noble effort.

You need to curtail your husband’s use of Twitter, I suggested, as a weapon to bludgeon foes and assorted critics.

Later I posted a blog entry extolling the virtue of your effort. You are right to use your high profile as first lady of the United States to end this scourge of Internet bullying. I applauded you then and I applaud you now.

However, your husband is at it again. I’m sure you’ve heard about that ghastly tweet he posted this morning about Mika Brzezinski, about how she was “bleeding from a facelift.” He called her “Crazy Mika.” Then he aimed his Twitter barrel at Joe Scarborough, her MSNBC morning talk show co-host, calling him “Psycho Joe.”

Just as a reminder, here is what he wrote: “I heard poorly rated Morning Joe speaks badly of me (don’t watch anymore). Then how come low I.Q. Crazy Mika, along with Psycho Joe, came …” Trump tweeted before adding “to Mar-a-Lago 3 nights in a row around New Year’s Eve, and insisted on joining me. She was bleeding badly from a face-lift. I said no!”

The recriminations are going to come quickly over a period of time, Melania. Your husband’s fellow Republicans are incensed. Some of them are as incensed as the rest of us who didn’t vote for your husband.

I am reminded of the question leveled at the reviled late U.S. Sen. Joseph McCarthy, who in the 1950s said there were communists employed at the State Department. “Have you left no sense of decency?” came the question from U.S. Army counsel Joseph Welch to Sen. McCarthy during one of those infamous Senate hearings.

It’s time to ask the same thing of your husband. I never thought I’d wonder this about the president of the United States: Has he no sense of decency, or decorum? Does he disrespect the high office he holds so much that he stoops to the level of juvenile petulance to communicate in such a crude, hostile and undignified manner?

I guess, Melania, we’re back to where we began. Isn’t it time you reined in that husband of yours before you launch your campaign against cyber bullying?

Temperament, man … it’s the temperament

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Hillary Rodham Clinton keeps harping on an aspect of Donald J. Trump’s emotional makeup.

She contends in her stump speeches that the Republican Party’s presidential nominee lacks the temperament to be president.

Others have joined the chorus. Republicans echo Democrats in saying that Trump’s emotional outbursts bode ill for someone who seeks to become the next head of state, head of government and commander in chief of the world’s greatest military machine.

So … how’s Trump responding lately?

He’s launched into another Tweet-storm, this time hurling insults and invective at — are you ready? — two cable TV news talk show hosts! Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski — co-hosts of the MSBNC “Morning Joe” talk show — now are in Trump’s sights.

He calls them “unstable.” He hurls insults at them. Oh, and he’s also suggested out loud that the two of them are — gasp! – dating each other. Which makes me say: B … F … D, dude.

They’re both single.

Whatever.

The issue that Clinton keeps raising, though, seems to ring a bit truer today as Trump assails two TV talk show hosts.

Temperament? Sure, Trump’s got it.

Memo to GOP: Let your nominee finish his race

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More and more Republicans are saying it: get rid of our presidential nominee.

Dump Trump. Ditch Donald.

The latest Republican to speak out is talk-show host — and former GOP congressman — Joe Scarborough. He says Donald J. Trump has disqualified himself as a presidential candidate.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-partisan/wp/2016/08/09/the-gop-must-dump-trump/?utm_term=.e3ce0dbe3fe2

I believe I must remind Scarborough of the following: Republican Party primary voters had the opportunity all along the way to look to someone else when given the chance.

They chose to go with Donald Trump.

He won the GOP nomination fair and square. He scored a first-ballot win at the Cleveland convention.

Sure, Trump has made a hash of his campaign. His statements have boggled our minds. He is demonstrating time and time again his total unfitness for the job.

How, though, does the party ditch a nominee now?

My own sense is that the party ought to let the man finish what he’s begun. Let him complete the race. Let him continue to embarrass himself.

The party can recover. Political parties have ways to do it. The Republicans rebuilt their conservative coalition after the 1964 disaster when Barry Goldwater got trampled by Lyndon Johnson. Democrats did the same thing after getting battered by Richard Nixon’s landslide win over George McGovern in 1972.

It’s a bit late in the game for the Republican Party to change nominees now.

What’s more, as someone who has no intention of voting for Donald Trump — and who cannot stand the idea of his ever getting anywhere near the Oval Office — I plan to enjoy this supreme narcissist getting his noggin thumped.

Clinton was up, down, now she’s way up

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Hillary Clinton’s roller-coaster ride to the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination has taken an important turn.

The once-invincible Democratic front runner got scuffed up, battered and a bit bruised over all the chatter leading up to the House Benghazi committee hearing this week.

Then came some good news for the Clinton camp: Vice President Joe Biden decided he wouldn’t run for president in 2016; then the Republican-led Benghazi panel came apart at the seams as it sought to tar and feather the former secretary of state over her role in the tragic events that transpired at the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.

It’s pretty accurate to say that the Benghazi panelists didn’t land a single telling punch on Clinton.

As I wrote in an earlier blog post, Clinton — to my eyes — looked like the only grownup in the congressional hearing room.

In the hour after the hearing adjourned, Clinton’s campaign set some kind of fundraising record. Money began pouring in.

Even pundits who tilt Republican, such as former GOP U.S. Rep. Joe Scarborough, said the hearing was a bad day for the GOP and for Benghazi committee chairman Trey Gowdy.

I am thinking at this moment that Hillary Clinton is officially back on track to claiming the Democrats’ presidential nomination.

At this moment …

Tomorrow, of course, is another day.

 

End of Cold War brought disarray

Joe Scarborough asks a compelling question about the state of U.S. foreign policy.

How did it get so messed up?

The one-time Republican congressman from Florida wonders how the world’s pre-eminent military and economic power can get in such a muddled mess.

I think I have a partial answer. Or perhaps just some food for thought: The end of the Cold War.

http://www.politico.com/story/2015/03/history-scarborough-obama-bush-isil-israel-116495.html?hp=l3_3

Geopolitical relationships have gotten incredibly complex since the days when the Soviet Union sought to control the world and the United States kept pushing back the Big Ol’ Bear.

Our adversary was a clearly defined nuclear power. It covered 8 million or so square miles of territory across two continents. They were fearsome. Then again, so were we.

Then the Berlin Wall came crashing down in 1989. Two years later, the Evil Empire imploded.

Just like that, our Enemy No. 1 was gone.

In its place a lot of other enemies have arisen to rivet our attention. Scarborough thinks two American presidents — George W. Bush and Barack Obama — have presided over this turmoil. Granted, the Soviet Union disappeared on George H.W. Bush’s watch and his successor, Bill Clinton, managed to keep the assortment of new enemies at bay.

Here’s part of what Scarborough writes: “Bush’s ideological foreign policy was tragically followed by Obama’s delusional belief that America could erase the sins of the Bush-Cheney era by simply abdicating the U.S.’s role as indispensable nation.”

I am not certain anyone quite yet is capable of juggling so many balls at the same time. President Bush took dead aim at al-Qaeda immediately after 9/11, but then expanded that effort into a war against Iraq. Then came Barack Obama — and the world has just kept on getting more unstable.

But we still haven’t yet figured out how to manage crises that keep cropping up throughout the Middle East and northern Africa. The result has been, as Scarborough notes, a vast explosion of crises involving ISIL, Syria, Turkey, Libya, Iran, Iraq, Nigeria … and even Venezuela in our own hemisphere. Let’s not forget North Korea and the immigration crisis emanating from Latin America.

We’ve got to keep our eyes on many balls all at once.

 

Silence on job growth is quite telling

That silence you hear from the Republican side of the political divide is quite instructive as the nation digests the latest job-growth numbers.

The Labor Department today reported that 248,000 jobs were added in September and that the jobless rate fell to less than 6 percent for the first time since 2008.

No cheers. No backslapping. No “congrats, you guys” are coming from the GOP gang.

http://www.politico.com/story/2014/10/september-2014-unemployment-numbers-111583.html?hp=l1

Indeed, this morning — just before the jobs figures came out — Ari Fleischer, who served as press secretary during the George W. Bush administration, disputed President Obama’s claim the other day that we’re better off now than when he took office in January 2009. Fleischer told Joe Scarborough on “Morning Joe” that Obama inherited a “100-foot hole” but still has a “95-foot hole” from which the country must emerge.

What utter bunk!

The economy is growing. Every independent analyst I’ve read suggests the nation has turned the corner from where we were six years ago.

Of course, the task now is to keep marching forward and to keep the momentum going.

Today’s job numbers suggest we’re continuing to make progress.

I get that politics requires muzzles when the “other side” has good news to report. That’s the way the game is played. Democrats do it, too, when the news involved a Republican administration.

Rest assured that if the next job report isn’t as glowing as this one, the loyal opposition will awaken quickly from its silent slumber.