The Campaign Spot

Announcing a Big Change to NR’s ‘Morning Jolt’

With the big changes coming to the Jolt, here is today’s edition, in its entirety, to bring everyone up to speed . . . 

Morning Jolt

. . . with Jim Geraghty

April 1, 2014


Readers, you may have noticed commercials for MSNBC’s Morning Joe program, hosted by Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, touting the program as a Morning Jolt.™ That branding effort was, in fact, an early promotion for MSNBC and NBCUniversal’s effort to diversify its morning news assets. Last night that effort took a dramatic step forward — with an additional bit of leaning forward — as NBCUniversal finalized its purchase of the Morning Jolt™ newsletter from National Review, Inc.

In exchange, National Review, Inc. received an undisclosed sum, as well as a second-round draft pick in this year’s National Media Pundit Draft, held May 8-10 at Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

And now, presenting our New Morning JOE-LT format . . . 

Why Doesn’t Joe Scarborough Run for President?

Isn’t he awesome? I mean, just layers upon layers of awesome.

So while he’s technically denied that he’s running for president . . . 

Joe Scarborough is running a campaign. It may be a campaign to change the Republican Party, to sell a book or perhaps to enhance his reputation.

But not, he insists, a campaign for president.

“I’m not running, and I’m not considering running,” Mr. Scarborough, a Republican former congressman and host of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” said in a telephone interview from Florida, where he was on spring break with his children. “I’m not making any Shermanesque statements, but I do not expect that to change.”

. . . that didn’t stop people from speculating recently . . . 

Scarborough’s speech sounds for all the world like a campaign speech — and a not-bad one at that. During the audience Q-and-A, a man stands up and says, “Thank you for giving my wife a tingle every morning.” Scarborough blushes hotly underneath his smooth tan, face scrunching gleefully behind his horn-rimmed glasses. “I categorically deny it!” he says.

. . . and it didn’t stop people from speculating in 2012 . . . 

After the presidential inauguration in January, Joe (no fan of Mitt Romney’s — “I’ve been very critical”) plans on publishing a memoir that will serve — no joke — as a vehicle to test the waters for a presidential run in 2016.

. . . and in 2010 . . . 

There’s no campaign yet, and there may never be, but New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and MSNBC’s morning talk-show host Joe Scarborough have begun trying to figure out whether they could be an independent presidential ticket in 2012 — and who would be better to be on top if it happens.

. . . and in 2009 . . . 

I think I’ve found the new face of the Republican Party. It’s not a new one, entirely, and it’s been hiding out on national television every weekday morning from six to nine.

Joe Scarborough.

Clearly, the only thing that can stop people from speculating about Joe Scarborough running for president is Joe Scarborough actually running for president.


Why Doesn’t Mika Brzezinski Run for President?

As this newsletter noted in a past edition, the conservative movement mostly shrugs its shoulders at America’s increasing obesity rates, choosing to believe that individual responsibility can resolve the issue. But evidence is mounting that resolving this national problem will take more than that. Clearly, Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” and “Let’s Drink Water!” and “Let’s Breathe Oxygen” campaigns have had only a marginal effect.

I suspect skyrocketing obesity rates and the resulting costs on our health-care system are issues that we on the right are going to have a tough time addressing. Most of us don’t think this is something the government ought to be involved with, and we rightfully point out that some recent efforts to address this have a distinctly Orwellian tone, like Mike Bloomberg’s war on large sodas. (Brzezinski calls Bloomberg “her hero.”)

Freedom means the freedom to make the wrong choices. Unfortunately, the wrong choice can have really bad consequences, and you wonder how self-destructive a choice must be before others are allowed to intervene to try to steer people away from those bad choices. If your eating habits are near-certain to create health-care costs later in life that you will be unable to afford, racking up huge costs to the Medicare system, is it still your business alone?

This isn’t a job for a first lady; it’s a job for a president. This country needs a commander-in-chief in the war on weight, and that leader is . . . 

Okay, maybe not that guy. Perhaps it will require . . . President Brzezinski.

Seriously, can your morning show hosts do this?


Why Doesn’t Donnie Deutsch Run for — Eh, Never Mind.

I mean, come on.


Why Do Conservative Guests Keep Eyeing MSNBC Contributors Skeptically?

Seriously, it’s almost as if the guy sitting on the left has been psychologically conditioned to greet everything Robert Gibbs says with skepticism.

And will someone please tie down his hands? He’s going to knock somebody out with those hand gestures.


Coming Tomorrow: Thirty-Seven Signs Your Favorite Media Source Is Emulating BuzzFeed in an Effort to Increase Traffic

ADDENDA: You remember what day today is, right?

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