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Brock, Scarborough Spar Over Clinton Emails, Hosts Laugh at Brock

On Monday, Media Matters and Correct the Record founder and author of “Killing the Messenger,” David Brock sparred with MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” co-host and former GOP Congressman Joe Scarborough over Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s emails, during which Brock was laughed at multiple times by both Scarborough and his fellow co-host Mika Brzezinski.

Brock said of the New York Times, “conservatives have [had] their complaints for years about the New York Times, and we have one as far as their Clinton coverage goes. And I think if you look at the evidence, the conclusion’s inescapable, three times in the last six months, the Times essentially carried, on the front page, allegations of criminal misconduct by Hillary Clinton saying that she was the subject of a criminal referral, when she wasn’t, she wasn’t the subject of that investigation, charging that she auctioned off US foreign policy for a Clinton Foundation donor, ended up groundless, and then the original story, which may be the worst, the original email story, where they said she may have broken federal law. Their own source contradicted them later, they didn’t use a statement that Secretary Clinton’s spokesman had given them before the story ran that would have set the story straight. So, I think, you know, once might be a mistake, twice a coincidence, three times a pattern. … I wouldn’t call it a conspiracy, but behind the pattern, is working with Republican investigators on Capitol Hill,” who he accused of “running a partisan operation with taxpayer money, and they’ve used the New York Times. And unfortunately, I think the Times has let itself be used to smear Hillary Clinton.”

He added that the Times isn’t being “ideological,” but rather, “in journalism, a lot of it’s careers, and a lot of it’s opportunism. She’s a big target. There’s ratings involved. There’s selling newspapers involved. … They want to get the story, they don’t want to miss the story, so they rush these things in print that don’t meet their standards. And it’s not just me saying this. If you read their own public editor in the last few months, she said the coverage was troubling, faulty she had to get the executive editor to agree in August to be fair to Hillary Clinton.”

Brock also maintained that the Clintons were “uniquely threatening to a lot of people, not just conservatives, because of the change they represented.” He also said the Times is “trying to prove out this notion that the Clintons are somehow corrupt” after their coverage of Whitewater, and “they’re operating under Clinton rules of journalism, which is basically, what’s normal behavior by any other politician is somehow painted as wrong and corrupt when it’s the Clintons.”

The discussion turned to the coverage of the 2008 Democratic primary, during which Scarborough accused MSNBC of having a pro-Obama bias, and said the primary was covered was “shameful.”

Scarborough then asked if the Clintons bring the scrutiny on themselves, Brock argued that they’re “victims” “in some sense, in this, what I’m describing here, that these fake scandals are created, and then they have some effect.”

Brock was then asked, “Are all the scandals involving the Clintons ‘fake scandals’?” He answered, “Yeah, sure. I mean, I take you through each one in this book, and I dealt with the ones from the 90s in prior books as you know. Yeah, look nothing’s been found, these are nothingburgers.”

Brock also commented on Hillary Clinton’s poll numbers, where he argued,  “something’s not breaking through, the substance isn’t breaking through. But that’s because there’s been a relentless campaign of distortion here, that’s gone on for six months, and I don’t think that Hillary Clinton brought that on herself.”

Scarborough protested, “it’s not a Republican playbook, that’s the thing, you say it’s a nothingburger. If it’s a nothingburger, you attack the New York Times, you attack the FBI as well. Do you think the FBI is on a witch hunt against Hillary Clinton? I mean, you know, Hillary will come out and say things that just aren’t true. She’ll say, well, gee, I didn’t break any rules. She did. There was a 2009 regulation that the — I mean, you talk to the Obama administration –,” fellow co-host Mika Brzezinski then cut in, “He doesn’t believe that.” Brock agreed that he didn’t, which prompted laughter from Brzezinski. After some crosstalk, Scarborough said, “when you’re disagreeing with that, understand, you’re also disagreeing with people in the Obama administration that put the regulations out there, that tell us, she broke the rules.”

Brock then pointed to a DOJ filing, stating, “they said two things. One, it was entirely proper and appropriate that every government employee makes the decision themselves about what’s a work related email, and what’s a personal email.” Brzezinski stated, “to delete,” which Brock agreed with and said the DOJ determine this deletion was “appropriate,” and Scarborough added “to delete, not to wipe clean.”

Scarborough countered, “If I delete an email, and I work for the State Department, I delete that email. But, if the State Department has to investigate my actions, they can go back and see — get access to that deleted email. In Hillary Clinton’s position, she sets up her own server, the day she starts office, and perhaps it’s wiped clean, perhaps it’s not wiped clean. That makes it entirely different.” Brock disagreed, stating, “I don’t think so, the Department of Justice says the deletion is totally proper and appropriate,” and that Hillary’s apology, coupled with the DOJ makes the scandal go away.

Scarborough then asked if he would be okay if Dick Cheney did the same thing, so that what Cheney decided was personal and what had to do with his job could never be determined. Brock answered, “every employee in the government has the decision to make, to classify work-related or personal.”

The two then sparred over whether Clinton followed the 2009 regulation. Scarborough maintained that Clinton didn’t because she didn’t contain her emails in the State Department.” Brock stated that she did, and “there was no real-time archiving requirement in the 2009 law,” and that Clinton’s emails “ended up at the State Department.” Scarborough countered, “They were supposed to, at the time,” and asked how Clinton’s emails ended up at the State Department. Brock answered, “she turned them over.” Scarborough, while laughing along with Brzezinski stated, “She turned them over a couple of months ago.”

Brock then said, “90% of them were there all along, because he communicated with people on the State gov accounts. 90% were there all along.” Scarborough countered, “We don’t know what emails she sent out. We don’t know what emails she sent to foreign leaders. We don’t know what emails in and out. And so, but, again though, the regulation is clear, and they’re suppose to back it up, and they’re supposed to back it up by having it at the server at the State Department, where they work. She didn’t do that.”

Brock answered, “But not in real time.” He added, “They changed the law, later, to say you have 20 days to do that. But that law was not in effect when she was secretary.” Scarborough disagreed, and stated the law was in effect, and Brock again maintained that the real-time archiving requirement wasn’t.

(h/t GOP War Room)

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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