MSNBC “Morning Joe” host Joe Scarborough opened his program on Tuesday morning by ripping into next month’s Conservative Political Action Conference, largely because it chose not to invite Republican New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to speak.
“How insular they are, because again — here with Chris Christie, you’ve got a guy, and I wrote about this last week, why should conservatives like Chris Christie,” Scarborough said. “After all, he’s done nothing conservative over the last four years, nothing other than declaring war against extreme government union bosses, fighting for education reform, spending less on this year’s budget than [Jon] Corzine spent five years ago on his budget, reforming and keeping afloat the state’s dying pension program, the health program by eliminating COLAs, increasing employee contributions. I mean the guy has done everything.”
Scarborough continued his discussion for more than five minutes, before lamenting that some CPAC attendees care more about fostering resentment and hate than they do about the future of the GOP.
“It’s not just about ideological purity,” he said. “So many of these people were defending George W. Bush when he was blowing a hole in the federal deficit. I mean, when he was spending more money than any Democrat ever spent. Do you think CPAC went crazy in 2004 when George W. Bush passed the $7 trillion Medicare drug benefit plan that he didn’t pay for? No. Rick Santorum’s going to be there. Rick supported the $7 trillion drug benefit plan. Paul Ryan’s going to be there. Paul Ryan supported the $7 trillion drug benefit plan that wasn’t paid for.”
“I could go down the list of the people that were there,” he continued. “This is not about true conservatism. It is about resentment, and it’s about hate and it’s about anger. And if you get along with the other side, then you’re not sufficiently conservative and let them just boil in their own stew, because these people, by excluding Chris Christie, have shown their hands. And it is a great, great service to the conservative movement — true conservatives like me. So many of those people are shams. They’re not true conservatives. And we can see it now. They don’t care about winning. They care about hate, resentment, selling books, talk radio — things that in the end keep us out of the White House for another generation.”
Scarborough participated in last year’s CPAC as an emcee in a banquet, and even promoted his appearance at CPAC on MSNBC’s website. Scarborough also participated in the 2009 CPAC event in a segment that was supposed to be about the Fairness Doctrine, even though he ended up taking on broader topics.
CPAC organizers at the American Conservative Union had no on-the-record comment about Scarborough’s remarks. But Scarborough’s criticisms came on the same day as it was announced that MSNBC’s other high-profile conservative, S.E. Cupp, said she would be boycotting this year’s event, because organizers decided to shut-out GOProud, a political action committee representing gay conservatives.