Discussing the possibility of Democrats gaining a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, Joe Scarborough stated, "So, with [Sen. Ted] Stevens losing, Democrats have 58 [senators and Senator-elects]. They've got this run-off in Georgia, which could get them to 59. ... If Al Franken steals enough votes in Minnesota, they get to 60. I'm not saying he stole any votes, I'm just saying, as a Republican from Florida, I mean, it's a close race. Steal some votes, you get over the top." In fact, Minnesota Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty has repeatedly said there is no actual evidence of fraud in the vote count of the state's Senate race.
On Morning Joe, Joe Scarborough falsely asserted that Sen. Barack Obama said during the October 15 presidential debate that Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) "drew appropriate comparisons" in a statement invoking George Wallace and a church bombing in criticizing "the negative tone of the McCain-Palin campaign." In fact, Obama said that Lewis "inappropriately drew a comparison between what was happening [at McCain-Palin rallies] and what had happened during the civil rights movement, and we immediately put out a statement saying that we don't think that comparison is appropriate" [emphasis added].
The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Morning Joe reported Cindy McCain's attack on Sen. Barack Obama that his "vote to not fund my son while he was serving sent a cold chill through my body." However, none of their reports noted that Sen. John McCain himself voted against legislation to fund the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
On MSNBC's Morning Joe, Mika Brzezinski asserted that "people overwhelmingly thought [Gov. Sarah Palin] won her debate," while Willie Geist suggested that Palin won by a smaller margin than Brzezinski claimed. However, most polls conducted on the days following the vice presidential debate found that Sen. Joe Biden won. In fact, a Media Matters review of polling sites did not find any national polls that found Palin won the debate.
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On Morning Joe, host Joe Scarborough falsely asserted that Sen. Barack Obama "wants" "higher taxes." In fact, the Tax Policy Center concluded that, compared to Sen. John McCain, "Obama would give larger tax cuts to low- and moderate-income households and pay some of the cost by raising taxes on high-income taxpayers" -- those households earning more than $250,000 per year.
On Morning Joe, Nicolle Wallace, senior adviser to Sen. John McCain's campaign, stated that "our campaign is suspended" pending agreement on legislation to address the country's current financial situation, and later accused Sen. Barack Obama of having "done exactly zero" to produce bipartisan legislation. Hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski did not ask Wallace to reconcile her appearance and her attack on Obama with her claim that McCain's campaign is "suspended."
On MSNBC's Morning Joe, Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough uncritically aired video of Sen. John McCain falsely claiming that Sarah Palin is "governor of a state that 20 percent of our America's energy supply comes from." In fact, as Factcheck.org noted, according to the most recent figures from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Alaska is responsible for "just 3.5 percent of the country's domestic energy production," and only 2.4 percent of the energy the United States consumes.
Good Morning America's Robin Roberts and Diane Sawyer echoed Republican talking points mocking the stage at Invesco Field in Denver, where Sen. Barack Obama plans to give his acceptance speech for the Democratic nomination for president, for including a structure with columns. But Roberts and Sawyer failed to mention that the stage at the Republican National Convention in 2004 also included columns.
On Morning Joe, Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough did not challenge McCain campaign manager Rick Davis' assertion that a McCain campaign ad attacking Sen. Barack Obama for not visiting wounded soldiers at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany was "the truth," despite reporting by their colleague, NBC's Andrea Mitchell, that the ad's criticism of Obama is "completely wrong, factually wrong" and "literally is not true."
On MSNBC Live, Mika Brzezinski failed to correct Mitt Romney's false assertion that Sen. John McCain "said that [Donald] Rumsfeld needed to go." Although a McCain spokesman reportedly acknowledged that McCain "did not call for his resignation," MSNBC hosts have repeatedly failed to correct guests' assertions that he did so.
On MSNBC Live, Tamron Hall stated: "Well, remember when there were those reports out that Hillary Clinton would use the so-called 'Tonya Harding strategy' to perhaps take out Barack Obama? Well, we're going to talk to the real Tonya Harding about her place in history and now her infamy within American politics. Yes, really, Mika." Mika Brzezinski said: "Oh, my God," later adding: "I can't believe that. It's great."
On MSNBC Live, magician Penn Jillette told a version of a joke about Sen. Hillary Clinton: " '[Sen. Barack] Obama did great in February, and that's because that was Black History Month. And now Hillary's doing much better 'cause it's White Bitch Month,' right?" After Jillette told the joke, co-host Joe Scarborough said, "I knew I -- you know, I knew I should have warned you before you started it." Co-host Mika Brzezinski added: "I don't like that." But MSNBC had plenty of notice that Jillette likes to tell the joke, which he is seen telling in a Web video, clips of which aired while Scarborough and Brzezinski introduced him.
The Hill's A.B. Stoddard asserted of Sen. John McCain: "[H]e is seen as so nonpartisan, someone who has bucked his party so many times, if he did something even nakedly partisan now, we'd all have trouble seeing it that way." In fact, McCain has reversed his positions on numerous issues to align himself more closely with his party's base.