On Wednesday’s edition of Morning Joe, co-hosts Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough discussed Monica Lewinsky’s new Vanity Fair piece, which will be released online Thursday and hit newsstands on May 13th. The discussion revolved around female opinion columnists criticizing Lewinsky for telling her story now. Brzezinski took offense to some of these columnists bullying and shaming Lewinsky. Brzezinski also used that opportunity to give her opinion that President Bill Clinton took advantage of Lewinsky at the time of their affair, feeding into the narrative that Sen. Rand Paul had started a few months ago when he started accusing the ex-President of being a ‘sexual predator.’
This provide Scarborough with the opportunity to go off on one of his now patented on-air tantrums, where he tossed around newspapers and sucked the air out of the room as he displayed tons of outrage at the actions of Bill Clinton in the ’90s. What began as a discussion around female columnists telling Lewinsky to shut up and go away turned into a Scarborough rant about Clinton that would have made Rand Paul proud.
Below is video of the segment:
As you can see, Scarborough just goes on and on about Clinton. While at times it seems as if he is trying to defend Lewinsky and ask other women stop slut-shaming her and allow her to say her piece now as she’s been quiet all of these years, it becomes apparent that he is really only using it as an excuse to frame Bill Clinton as a dirty old man who abused Lewinsky. The mock outrage at the treatment of Monica Lewinsky is only a way to bring up Bill Clinton and shame anyone, especially women, who think of the ex-President in a positive manner.
The narrative Scarborough pushed throughout his diatribe is that Clinton is being protected at the cost of an innocent woman, and that female opinion columnists are at the forefront of it, doing more harm than good. However, the panel only pointed to one column. That column, from the New York Post’s Andrea Peyser, is a particularly nasty, tabloidish piece of trash, as one would expect from the Post. However, one would be hard pressed to see that column as being pro-Clinton, as she calls the former President a “scoundrel.”
Therefore, one hit piece, written by a columnist for a paper that specializes in tawdry gossip and yellow journalism, is enough to make a blanket judgment on all female writers, per Morning Joe. It allows Scarborough the opportunity to mansplain to his audience that it is a shame that women have to go after a fellow woman and attempt to silence her all to support a man who performed “horrific acts.”
“Please, you all are sick. You ‘women’s rights’ ladies, you were sick in the ’90s. You all went around, you defended the wrong person time and time again. Whether it was Juanita Broaddrick, whether it was Monica Lewinsky, you defended [Clinton]. And you’re doing it 18 years later. You’re pathetic…all these years later, there are females going out and protecting Bill Clinton from his horrific acts.”
The funny thing about Scarborough’s rant on Wednesday morning is that he tried to make it seem like he didn’t want to talk about Clinton and the Lewinsky scandal. He said that he had left it in the ’90s, where it belonged. He even tried to make it seem like he and Bill Clinton are pals and friendly now. Of course, that was really just a way to show his audience that he is on the same level as the ex-President in terms of importance. Basically, Scarborough’s attempt at making himself seem like a big-time power player who chats with heads of state all the time.
While Scarborough may have said that he hasn’t talked about this in years, the record says otherwise. In fact, just about 3 months ago on Morning Joe, Scarborough came to Rand Paul’s defense and said that the Lewinsky scandal should be used against Hillary Clinton if she runs in 2016.
“If Hillary Clinton attacks the Republican Party’s handling of women, and treatment of women and disrespect for women, and suggests they’re misogynists et cetera, et cetera, et cetera, it does seem to be a fair question to ask right now, a few years out, does the media have a responsibility to say, ‘Well, let’s see what happened when you were in the White House, and how women were treated when you were in the governor’s mansion and the White House?’ Is that fair?”
In the end, these on-air temper tantrums are becoming more and more common for Scarborough. It is now his shtick. We saw it just last week when he went crazy and lost his mind when talking about Benghazi. He now feels like he needs to come across as unhinged and crazed on a regular basis. Perhaps it is because the show’s ratings are plummeting. Or, maybe it is because he is contemplating a Presidential run in 2016 and thinks he needs to show he is ‘passionate.’ Whatever the reason, it is a sad, sad display when it occurs and makes the show unwatchable.
Justin Baragona is the Managing Editor at Politicus Sports as well as Senior Editor at PoliticusUSA. He was a political writer for 411Mania.com before joining PoliticusUSA. Politically, Justin considers himself a liberal but also a realist and pragmatist. Currently, Justin lives in St. Louis, MO and is married. Besides writing, he also runs his own business after spending a number of years in the corporate world. You can follow Justin on Twitter either with his personal handle (@justinbaragona) or the Sports site’s (@PoliticusSports).