MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough had harsh words for the likes of Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wisconsin) and Fox News stars like Tucker Carlson on Tuesday, though he didn’t mention Fox by name while he excoriated conservative leaders who have downplayed the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.
Scarborough also shot down the false equivalency of comparing the isolated cases of violence and looting during Black Lives Matters protests last summer to the deadly Capitol riot that attempted to overthrow election results and attack elected officials.
“I know there are idiots on other cable news channels that will say, ‘Well, this mom and pop store was vandalized during the summer riots and that’s just as bad as the United States Capitol being vandalized,'” Scarborough said, apparently referring to Fox News stars like Tucker Carlson. “Actually, no, jackass, it’s not.”
He added, “The Capitol of the United States of America is the center of American democracy and while I am a fierce believer in people’s right to defend their private property, I am not going to confuse a taco stand with the United States Capitol.”
During a much-contested segment last week, Carlson argued that the catalyst for last summer’s protests following the police killing of George Floyd was a “carefully concocted myth” designed to damage the country. He compared what he saws as the “myth” around Floyd’s killing to the Capitol riot.
Earlier in Tuesday’s program, Scarborough rolled clips of Johnson questioning the seriousness of the rioters who participated in the insurrection that left five people dead, including several police officers. Johnson had also questioned the seriousness of the event itself, too. “Is that where they end up after this is all over, pretending this did not happen? We have the video. We have the video,” said Scarborough.
Indeed, during last week’s Senate impeachment trial against former president Donald Trump, House Democrats shared two video segments with lawmakers. The first was comprised of clips from the riot that had already been seen online and on news broadcasts. The second was made up of never-before-seen footage from body cameras and security cameras. It showed how close the rioters got to some of Johnson’s colleagues, like Sen. Mitt Romney or former vice president Mike Pence.