Monday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” host Joe Scarborough spoke about President-elect Donald Trump’s reported pick for secretary of state, ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson.
Scarborough downplayed the effectiveness of labeling Tillerson a “stooge” of Russian President Vladimir Putin given he had been recommended by former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and former Treasury Secretary James Baker.
“You know, the thing is that Donald Trump has been very impressed by what a lot of people that have gone through,” he said. “David Petraeus — extraordinarily impressed. Mitt Romney — he actually got along with him very well. At different times he was ready to go with those two gentlemen. I think here what you hear not only from Donald Trump, but also Donald Trump’s aides, is that they believe this guy is in a league of his own. He’s been on the world stage for 15, 20 years. He’s run one of the top companies on the planet. And it’s really interesting reading the news.
“The big knock this weekend on Twitter has been that he’s Vladimir Putin’s stooge,” Scaborough continued. “As I pointed out last night, he was recommended — you know, Condi Rice has not called Donald Trump yet. Condi Rice called Donald Trump to say this is your man at state. Bob Gates also reportedly recommended Rex Tillerson. Rex Tillerson has been a close friend with Jim Baker. Why do I bring all of this up? Not to carry Rex Tillerson’s brief, but just to tell you it’s going to be very hard for Marco Rubio who came out against him and very hard for John McCain and very hard for Lindsey Graham to paint Rex Tillerson as some sort of Putin stooge when you have Condi Rice and James Baker and possibly even Bob Gates saying, ‘We know this guy. We like this guy. And we think he’ll be a very, very effective secretary of state.’”
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