MSNBC's Joe Scarborough got in a heated debate with colleague Chuck Todd Thursday morning over whether the father of recently released POW Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl should be subject to criticism over his actions. Scarborough criticized the Obama administration for including Bob Bergdahl in a Rose Garden announcement on Saturday to announce the release of Bowe in exchange for five Taliban officials who had been detained at Guantanamo Bay.
“Joe, Joe, let's not. Don’t criticize the parents,” Todd replied. “Don’t criticize the parents in here."
"I can criticize parents that have reached out to the Taliban," Scarborough said.
"That are missing a child?" Todd said.
"If my son is out on the wire, and he is out there with fellow troops, and he writes me up and says he hates America and he's thinking about deserting and he's thinking about leaving his post, I can tell you as a father of that 26-year-old or 23-year-old son, I'd say, 'Joey, you stay the hell right there.' I'd call his commander. I would say, 'Get my son, he is not well. Get him to a military base in Germany.' I would not say, 'Follow your conscience son.' I would not reach out to the voice of jihad," Scarborough replied.
Appearing on the Today Show this morning, Chuck Todd reports that, in response to allegations of possible desertion by Bowe Bergdahl, White House sources are accusing the soldiers that served with him of "swift boating." Prior to the allegations made by those who served with Bergdahl, National Security Advisor Susan Rice had said Bergdahl served with "Honor and distinction." From the transcript of the Today Show:
The White House will not say whether anyone will have to pay the Obamacare penalty in 2014:
"Is there going to be a single person in 2014 that's going to pay the penalty? A single uninsured American that is going to end up paying the penalty in 2014 at this point?," asked MSNBC host Chuck Todd.
President Obama went after MSNBC host Chuck Todd for asking too many questions at a press conference today in Jerusalem, Israel:
Obama told Todd, who had asked about the president's failures to achieve Middle East peace, that he should be more like the Israeli press, and only ask one question. And the president called Todd "incorrigible."
MSNBC host Chuck Todd asked the co-chair of the Democratic party's convention, L.A. mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, why there are more Republican women and Hispanic governors:
"Let me ask you though, this one question, why is it that the Republicans have elected more women governors and have two Hispanic governors and the Democrats don’t?," asked Todd. "Don’t have as many women governors and don’t have Hispanic governors, why do you think that is?"
The White House briefing room is often known as the place where news goes to die. Reporters try hard to get the press secretary to “make news” – or say something useable for their television/radio/print/web stories of the day. They often fail, in part because the job of the press secretary, in many respects, is to avoid doing exactly what the reporters in the room are trying to get him to do – make news. Every once in a while, though, there is an exchange in the White House briefing room that provides clarity on a major issue of the day.
MSNBC White House correspondents Savannah Guthrie and Chuck Todd asked White House press secretary Robert Gibbs some hard-hitting questions today.
Hinting that intelligence is perishable, Guthrie asks Gibbs, "Did you lose an opportunity to interrogate by Mirandizing too soon? This was not a product of reflection that went all the way to the top."