Saturday, June 6, 2009

MSNBC's Joe Scarborough Represented Abortion Doctor's Killer

TPM Muckraker reports:

In 1993, David Gunn was killed in Pensacola, Florida, and Michael Griffin, an anti-abortion zealot, was accused of the crime. (Griffin was later convicted and jailed.) And Joe Scarborough -- who the following year would run for Congress as a Republican abortion foe -- made several court appearances, pro bono, on Griffin's behalf.

Scarbourough, host of Morning Joe, never mentioned the recent physician's murder, Dr. George Tiller, and he didn't mention having represented Griffin back in 1993. Rather, he said he was asked by Griffin's family, who knew his own family, to find a lawyer for Griffin.

Very interesting. So it seems that the often righteous TV pundit was much more involved in the murder case than he led his audience to believe. The TPM story goes on:

("The family hired me and they wanted me to find him a lawyer, to make sure he didn't use the Bible as his self-defense in court," he said) He implied that a number of people expressed interest in taking on the case in order because of its political implications ("for all the wrong reasons") and that he was wary of such people. Eventually, he said, he found a "progressive, pro-choice" lawyer who nonetheless understood that everyone has the right to counsel. Scarborough went on to talk about the need to return to civility in American politics.

I wonder if this episode is included in Scarborough's new book? Probably not. Once a slick politician, always a slick politician.

MSNBC 'balances' its left-leaning programming with the Morning Joe spot early in the morning. Later in the day, hosts Matthews, Schultz, Maddow and Olberman swing the network way left. I've come to listen to all of them much less as the ravages of winter recede from my memories, yet Morning Joe fits my morning schedule quite well. Still, I have grown tired of him and his puppet mistress Mika. His overt righteousness and her role as shocked side-kick have become a hackneyed, trite show. I often flip it off at the last sip of my morning coffee.

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