On MSNBC's Morning Joe, David Shuster asked Clinton campaign chief strategist Mark Penn if it was a "mistake" when he "brought up a word and reminded people of [Sen.] Barack Obama's past drug use" on Hardball in December 2007. But, Penn was not the one to bring up Obama's past drug use; it was Chris Matthews. Matthews, as well as Norah O'Donnell, have falsely asserted that Penn brought up the issue.
On Morning Joe, Mika Brzezinski said of Sen. John McCain, "[F]or the most part, he really does stick to his views even if they're unpopular," adding that McCain's "views on immigration were unpopular, and he stood by them even at the peril of his campaign." In fact, McCain once called for comprehensive reform that addressed the creation of a guest-worker program, a path to citizenship, and border security, but now says he supports addressing border security first.
In again refusing to acknowledge that former White House senior political adviser Karl Rove was involved in leaking the identity of former CIA operative Valerie Plame to conservative columnist Robert D. Novak, MSNBC's Joe Scarborough falsely suggested that Rove was not a source for Novak.
As evidence that "some of [Bill Clinton's] connections could create ethical and diplomatic conflicts for his wife," Andrea Mitchell reported on Clinton's September 2005 trip to Kazakhstan with Canadian mining financier Frank Giustra, followed by his hosting "the head of Kazakhstan's uranium agency at their Chappaqua [New York] home." But Mitchell didn't report, as stated by The New York Times, that the Kazakh official failed to obtain Clinton's help in "lobby[ing]" in support of Kazakhstan's intention to buy a stake in a U.S. firm. Further, Mitchell reported Giustra's claim that "the uranium deal ... was substantially completed before" he and Bill Clinton "arrived in Kazakhstan without noting that Giustra has reportedly been involved in Kazakh mining deals at least as far back as the mid-1990s.
NBC's Andrea Mitchell falsely claimed that during the January 31 Democratic presidential debate, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton "really misstated her vote on the Levin amendment" -- referring to an amendment offered by Sen. Carl Levin to the 2002 resolution authorizing the use of force against Iraq. In fact, during the debate Clinton acknowledged her vote against the Levin amendment and provided an explanation for her vote that is consistent with the way she explained her position on the day of the vote.
Joe Scarborough stated on the February 1 edition of MSNBC's Morning Joe: "Media Matters actually gets very agitated when we call [former New York City Mayor] Rudy Giuliani 'America's Mayor.' In fact, they did a whole post on us calling Rudy 'America's Mayor,' so we decided to call him 'America's Mayor' about 48 times."
On Morning Joe and MSNBC Live, Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski referred to Rudy Giuliani as "America's Mayor," in the context of Giuliani's departure from the presidential race and reported endorsement of Sen. John McCain. Media figures have repeatedly touted Giuliani's reputation as "America's Mayor" since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, despite criticism over his actions before and after the attacks.
On Morning Joe, Joe Scarborough asserted that Congressional Quarterly's Craig Crawford is "the only human being on the face of the Earth, other than Bill Clinton, that doesn't think Bill Clinton's Jesse Jackson remark was inappropriate." He also said Crawford is "the only guy who has defended ... Bill Clinton's Jesse Jackson remark." But Jackson has reportedly said that he does not "read anything negative into Clinton's observation."
On Morning Joe, Craig Crawford stated: "I really think the evidence-free bias against the Clintons in the media borders on mental illness." Crawford went on to assert, "I mean, we've gotten into a situation where if you try to be fair to the Clintons, if you try to be objective, if you try to say, 'Well, where's the evidence of racism in the Clinton campaign?' you're accused of being a naïve shill for the Clintons." He later added: "I really think it's a problem."
Joe Scarborough and Willie Geist ridiculed Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) for "push[ing] the wrong button" when casting votes as an Illinois state senator. But they failed to make clear that, according to the Los Angeles Times article they were referencing (which addressed only five of the six alleged mistaken votes), Obama stated that he had voted the wrong way and asked that the record reflect that fact for each of those five votes when he actually cast them in the Illinois state Senate.
On Morning Joe, Mika Brzezinski described John Gibson's statement in response to the firestorm over remarks he made concerning the death of actor Heath Ledger as "an awful, awful joke of an apology," and later asserted that it was "not an apology." After airing Gibson's statement, Joe Scarborough said, "What he said was, 'I'm sorry if you were offended. ... I'm sorry if you were offended that I mocked the death of a young man.' " Scarborough also asserted that Gibson "got caught in an anti-gay tirade."
On Morning Joe, Chris Matthews complained that the January 21 Democratic presidential debate on CNN, held on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, spent too much time discussing "black/white issues" rather than the candidates' positions on the Iraq war or health care. But Matthews did not ask similar questions about the January 15 Democratic presidential debate on MSNBC, even though many of the first 19 questions asked during the debate focused on race and none dealt explicitly with issues of public policy.
Discussing the most recent Democratic presidential candidates debate on Morning Joe, political and social commentator Mike Barnicle said Sen. Hillary Clinton "look[ed] like everyone's first wife standing outside a probate court," eliciting laughter from the all-male panel that featured MSNBC's Joe Scarborough, Willie Geist, and David Shuster.