MSNBC Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough lit into the President yesterday for retweeting a conspiracy theory suggesting that Jeffrey Epstein had some help in shuffling off this mortal coil on Saturday. And he wasn’t holding back in his criticism, either. (Free Beacon)
MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough attacked President Donald Trump for spreading conspiracy theories about the suicide of convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, despite the fact that Scarborough and his Morning Joe colleagues spread Epstein conspiracy theories only days earlier.
Trump retweeted a tweet from a supporter Saturday denying that Epstein committed suicide and claiming that the billionaire financier “had information on Bill Clinton & now he’s dead.” The Monday Morning Joe panel condemned Trump for spreading the conspiracy, which has no basis in fact…
“And then the president caps all that off by accusing the Clintons of murder. It does just seem to keep getting worse and the president seems to become more and more unbalanced,” he concluded.
I’m not sure I’d go all the way to “unbalanced” but we definitely don’t have any evidence thus far to indicate that this was anything other than a successful suicide attempt. So suggesting otherwise is, at a minimum, premature and probably wrong. So Trump was way out of line, right?
Okay. Let’s run with that. And using this as our premise, let’s look at a few of Joe Scarborough’s own tweets from the weekend, dug up by the folks at the Free Beacon.
He had another tweet which appears to have been deleted, but it read as follows:
A guy who had information that would have destroyed rich and powerful men’s lives ends up dead in his jail cell. How predictably…Russian.
— Joe Scarborough (@JoeNBC) August 10, 2019
Joe also retweeted Brian Koppelman, who wrote the following: “Look. I have studied powerful people and criminals for a long time. Even if there’s “photographic evidence” there is no way this was suicide. Having someone killed or hurt in jail can be as simple as leaving them unprotected. As simple as paying someone outside the jail.”
I don’t know about you, but that trail of twitter activity certainly makes it sound like Scarborough initially found the suicide story fishy himself. And he went several steps further, repeating the idea that “rich and powerful men” were benefitting from Epstein’s sudden departure from the land of the living. He doesn’t come out and specify Bill Clinton by name, but it’s not much of a stretch to read between the lines.
Later in the weekend, after being called out by some people from other news networks, Scarborough responded by writing this off as some “glib tweets over a cup of coffee.” Of course, “glib” doesn’t mean satirical, sarcastic or anything similar, so I’m not sure what we’re supposed to do with that.
While the entire affair does smell to high heaven, I still remain skeptical that this was anything other than a suicide accomplished because of bureaucratic incompetence at the jail. For it to be otherwise would require a truly massive conspiracy with a lot of people at that facility risking their entire careers (and potentially their freedom) by telling a huge pile of lies ever since it happened. Conversely, Epstein’s life was basically over and he knew it, so the idea that he might take his own life isn’t all that shocking.
But if you’re going to criticize anyone for spreading conspiracy theories about this, you might want to make sure your own record on the subject is spotless first.