From MEDIA MATTERS (May 12, 2010):
Joe Scarborough and MSNBC’s Morning Joe cast devoted nearly half an hour today to discussing discredited rumors that Elena Kagan is gay — even while noting that the White House says she isn’t gay and repeatedly acknowledging that most Americans probably don’t “care.”
The discussion occupied much of the first 15 minutes of the show. Despite the fact that there is absolutely no evidence that Kagan is gay and that the White House and Kagan’s friends have unequivocally said that she isn’t gay, Scarborough portrayed the issue as a “bigger question.” Scarborough and Pat Buchanan repeatedly tied the discredited rumors to false claims that Kagan banned military recruiters from Harvard’s campus.
The purported hook for Scarborough’s discussion was the controversy over whether The Wall Street Journal‘s use of a 17-year-old photo of Kagan playing softball was intended to be a reference to the rumors.
Leading off the show, Scarborough said, “Apparently, I didn’t know this, but softball bat symbolizes a certain lifestyle.”
You know, I don’t remember this much scrutiny about Senator Susan Collins, Harriet Miers, or Condoleezza Rice. They’re older than Elena Kagan and unmarried. How do we know that they’re not in…
But Scarborough is wrong. It isn’t a “bigger question.” There is simply no evidence that Kagan is gay, and just last night, Politico‘s Ben Smith reported the following:
Elena Kagan is not a lesbian, one of her best friends told POLITICO Tuesday night, responding to persistent rumors and innuendo about the Supreme Court nominee’s personal life.
Moments after saying that “apparently, the bigger question is, is she gay? Does it matter? Do we care?,” Scarborough said the following:
A couple weeks ago, and we’re going to get the quote, someone suggested when Elena Kagan’s name came up that she was gay. And the White House responded by saying this is a smear, the attacks, which made a bunch of gay groups come out and say, wait a second, is it a smear? Do you accept gays and lesbians as equals, or do you consider it a smear? So this softball bat-gate is actually opening up a much bigger question. Not about whether she’s gay, but how the White House has responded to it and whether Americans are going to want to know whether she is or not.
Several minutes later, Morning Joe returned to the issue, with Scarborough asking, “[W]hat about her being a lesbian, if she is a lesbian, does that matter?”
SCARBOROUGH: OK, but what about her being a lesbian, if she is a lesbian, does that matter?
SCARBOROUGH: Pat Buchanan, you’ve talked about a generational divide on gay marriage, on gays, lesbians. Do you think, just politically, put on your political hat here, that if she were a lesbian, that Americans would care? That the majority of Americans would care?
BUCHANAN: I think some Americans, certainly, would care about that.
Buchanan then said that the rumors about Kagan “tend to reinforce the fact she kept the military — or sent the recruiters off of campus” — a reference to the false claim that Kagan banned military recruiters from Harvard:
BUCHANAN: I think some Americans, certainly, would care about that. But I think her problem is this, it’s not so much what her orientation is, and it does tend to reinforce the fact she kept the military — or sent the recruiters off of campus over the fact that they are allegedly discriminating against gays, even though the policy was imposed by Clinton.
Still later in the show, Scarborough again referenced the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell issue,” saying to Buchanan: “Her sexual orientation may be irrelevant to the majority of Americans. But when you attach it to ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ and the letter she wrote as dean of the law school, then suddenly conservatives have a reason to go that direction, right?”
Buchanan responded, “I think the military thing is the big issue. The military off campus, the allegation that she is anti-military.” (The allegation that Kagan is “anti-military” is also false.)
Buchanan then explained: “The very fact we’re discussing this right now, indicates to me that that photograph worked. Now, I don’t think I’ve got a bad mind, but when I saw that photograph, I said to myself, they are trying to introduce the idea of her orientation, about which we’ve read way down in columns, for a good while. And I think they succeeded.”
(video at MEDIA MATTERS link)
Back to Squirrelly Sue, Harriet, and Condi. Squirrelly Sue has to vote on things like same-sex marriage and the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Condi was confirmed by the Senate to be Secretary of State. There was not one question about her sexuality. What if she had to deal severely with a really gay country, like France? How could we have trusted her to rely on her intellect instead of on what her lady parts were telling her? And Harriet? Well, hell, just look at her! Look at her left cheek–she’s chewing tobacco! While we’re at it, have you ever seen Joe Squinty Scarborough or Pat Buchanan playing softball or any other sport? And they drink those fancy frou-frou coffee drinks from Starbucks! Just sayin’.
And don’t even get me started on John Roberts, Samuel Alito, Antonin Scalia, and Clarence Thomas…
26 responses to “The less bein’ said about it, the better”
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I’ve been watching/reading some of the Scarborough, Buchanan clips. Scarborough was just seedy, putting forth that playing softball is an inherent aspect of being a lesbian, while showing Kagan on the plate holding a bat. Even Brzesinski looked embarrassed to share the desk with him.
Buchanan’s gone so far as to say, there are too many Jews on the court. And too many Catholics. Wherz the Protestants??? he wants to know. He should look at the history of the executive branch.
i can’t stand squinty joe, vapid mika, or the racist misogynist, pat buchanan. even moronic willie geist gets on my last nerve. that whole discussion was beneath contempt. shame on msnbc for allowing any of them a platform to share bigotry and hate. i refuse to watch morning schmo, and i know that i’m not missing anything worth watching.
It’s probably MSNBC’s version of fair and balanced. The people managing news operations don’t know how to think. Most of the people doing news don’t know how to think. That exchange was so low…yes, beneath contempt. And there it was played out for God and everybody as if this is how intelligent people draw conclusions. It’s supposed to be news, and it was just crap.
I truly hate this “fair” and stupid version of “balance.”
Being fair doesn’t mean that stupid crap needs to be played all over the news along with actual news.
Count this among the reasons I love NPR … I don’t have to listen to stupid stories about whether Elena Kagan is gay. They don’t deem it newsworthy.
I’m not sure that these jokers running “news” networks on cable even remember that word. They have to fill 24 hours and so cram in whatever crap they can find.
Reason #1 why I don’t miss having cable.
i totally agree. this fair and balanced crap is ridiculous. you don’t give every idiot a microphone, just because he has a different point of view. if his opinion is valid and based on facts, that’s one thing, but when it’s based on his own version of facts, what is being accomplished other than dumbing down the public?
i usually can’t stand ed schultz’s show, because i don’t think he’s too bright, and i can’t stand the talking heads he has on. they say the same thing over and over again, and he sits there and chuckles. a lot of people don’t like tweety, and he aggravates me most of the time, but when someone says something stupid or untrue on his show, he makes chopped liver out of them.
What, exactly, is the point of Pat Buchanan?
Honestly, when William Buckley’s essay in the early 90’s on anti-Semitism and Mona Charen’s blistering article after the 1992 GOP convention each named him as one of the most hateful people in the Republican Party, I thought he’d be done.
The idea that nearly two decades later he still has people sticking microphones in front of him defies my comprehension.
Pat Buchanan is useful as an anti-neocon and anti-Bush voice on the Right. Same with Joe Scarborough. They’re also useful when people tar MSNBC as “too liberal.” Management can then point to those two and say “Really? Then what about these two?” Besides, rub the noses of those two in reality and they’ll at least acknowledge that it exists. You can’t say the same about a lot of people on the Right these days.
That said, I still find him infuriating.
who cares if people say that msnbc is too liberal? does it hurt faux at all when people say it’s too conservative? it seems like the news station that’s hurting the most is cnn, which attempts to be middle-of-the-road.
Yeah, but the people who are most outraged by MSNBC won’t be appeased no matter what they do.
The Beck and Limbaugh minions won’t care who is cast on the show.
i’m as baffled as you are, wken. i guess he has a lot of friends in high places. he’s not funny, he’s not interesting, and he lies like a rug. i don’t know why producers think people care what he says. maybe they figure he’ll stir up some controversy and get some ratings.
I guess that’s it, although he does also get on Hannity’s radio show … so someone on the Right is still taking him seriously.
Add him to the rogue’s gallery along with convict (though reversed by activist judges) Ollie North and Mark Fuhrman (best known for his racial epithets that helped blow the O. J. Simpson trial).
it seems that even your enemies are your friends when you live within the bubble of d.c. why wouldn’t the right welcome uncle pat with open arms? the mystery is why the left puts up with his racism and misogyny. it’s one thing to hang out with him at a party. it’s quite another to give a bigot a microphone and treat him with respect.
We are mired in 2 wars. The Gulf of Mexico is swimming in oil, the economy & jobs have tanked– and the topic of if Elena Kagan is gay or not is the big focus???
Runs from room screaming!!!!!!!!!!!!!
just more diversionary tactics from the wingnut faction of the rethuglican party.
The trouble is too much time and too little to talk about. The old saying is controversy sells newspapers and Stewart did a classic demonstration last week where WSJ has a bi-line then Ruperts daily goes front page only to end up with the TV bozos leading with “it’s been reported…”. You can mix up any combo of this at Newscorp. That Villiage Justices is laugh out loud funny! Yep, goper women can skate because all they do is sit around and fear god. Who could question that? One of my favorite zingers to my former neocon room-mate guaranteed to light him off: watching news, story showing Rice woman and I’d say “No mans ever touched that”.
i don’t buy the argument that there’s too much time and too little to talk about. there are all kinds of stories that can be covered. there’s a great big world out there, and a lot of important stuff is happening. however, the news organizations are too lazy and too understaffed to actually cover real news. the investigative reporter is an endangered species. instead, there are pool reporters who only give the most superficial accounts of what is happening. how often do you see an actual interesting debate going on, and the anchor says i have to cut you off, we’re out of time, because they have to tell us who tiger woods is shtupping now or to update us on american idol?
how does Pat sit next to Mika – who is Polish or Jonathan Capehart who is gay (and black) or Donnie Deutsch who is Jewish or Eugene Robinson who is black
why does Pat not ask if there are too many minorities on Morning Schmoe
the question is how do they all sit there and not tell pat to go to hell. i guess they only answer to their paychecks. just like politicians who don’t realize that speaking the truth instead of pandering will gain them respect and votes, the talking heads would rather just nod their heads that say what needs to be said.
There is absolutely none of that sort of samey-shamey monkeyshines within the conservative ranks, no, nyet, nuh-uh.
There is, however, a great deal of handsomely compensated baggage handling…a perfectly innocuous activity which has been misconstrued by a truculent public that persists in believing their own lying eyes over perfectly plausible P.R. denials, the ingrates.
i bet john roberts has had his baggage handled a time or two, if you know what i mean. 😉
Well, while the Rethuglicans worry about who is fucking who, why don’t they take DNA samples every time their Godly Goody-Two-Shoes screw somebody (besides their constituents) and see who the fuckee is! Hmm, could it be, oh, let’s see:an aide, another man’s wife, a prostitute, a male prostitute, a male page?
Not to mention maybe the church secretary. Or like Larry Craig with his hose in his hand ready to put out the fire in an undercover cop. The conservatives should look at where they’ve been first!
yet another holier-than-thou abstinence-only rethug bit the dust today when he admitted that he’s been shtupping one of his aides. mark souder’s from indiana, and another rethug will take his seat, because the folks in indiana don’t want some non-fundy democrat representing them. they’ll buy the holier-than-thou crap from the next rethug that comes around.
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