November 15, 2013

The business alliance between Politico and MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” deepens, if that’s possible. On Wednesday night, Politico’s “Playbook” hosted a cocktails event with “Morning Joe” name partner Joe Scarborough and co-host Mika Brzezinski, with the stated purpose of staging a “conversation about policy, politics and Joe’s new book, ‘The Right Path: From Ike to Reagan, How Republicans Once Mastered Politics–and Can Again.‘” Politico even wrote an article from the event, which reportedly drew more than 600 people.

That wasn’t nearly enough Politico-generated pro-Scarborough publicity for one week, however. In a segment this morning on “Morning Joe,” Politico potentate Mike Allen got promotionally cute. The context: “Morning Joe” launched a discussion of two opposing GOP views toward the last month’s shutdown crisis — that of Sen. John McCain and that of Sen. Ted Cruz. In a clip presented on air, Cruz pointedly expressed no regrets whatsoever about his extreme position in the October proceedings. After showing Cruz’s unapologetic approach, Scarborough asked guest Allen whether Republicans should focus on beating up the Democrats rather than fighting among themselves. Allen responded, “Well, Joe, exactly, and I don’t know what you keep under your pillow, but what I have under my pillow is the book…’The Right Path,’” said Allen, brandishing his copy of the book. “You might call this clip the ‘Wrong Path,’ because what we’re seeing here from Sen. Cruz is defiance and we’re seeing that he may try to push for another confrontation like this.”

That teed up a monologue by Scarborough summing up the thesis of “The Right Path.”

Erik Wemple writes the Erik Wemple blog, where he reports and opines on media organizations of all sorts.