Speaking this morning on Morning Joe, Scarborough didn’t mention having represented Griffin. Rather, he said he was asked by Griffin’s family, who knew his own family, to find a lawyer for Griffin. (“The family hired me and they wanted me to find him a lawyer, to make sure he didn’t use the Bible as his self-defense in court,” he said) He implied that a number of people expressed interest in taking on the case in order because of its political implications (“for all the wrong reasons”) and that he was wary of such people. Eventually, he said, he found a “progressive, pro-choice” lawyer who nonetheless understood that everyone has the right to counsel. Scarborough went on to talk about the need to return to civility in American politics.
But when the Village Voice dug into the episode for a cover story on Scarborough last year, it found evidence suggesting Scarborough had sought to play a large role in the case.[….]
Of course, Scarborough would go on to win the House seat the following year, with crucial backing from anti-abortion activists. His biggest single donor, according to the Voice, was the National Right to Life Committee, which gave him $15,210, and his second was the Eagle Forum, founded by anti-abortion hardliner Phyllis Schlafly.
But it makes us wonder: Did Scarborough, planning a run for Congress from a deeply socially conservative Florida panhandle district, sought to get involved in the Griffin case as a way to associate himself with, and build support among, the anti-abortion movement? In other words, was Scarborough’s political career launched in part by exploiting the dangerous strain of right-wing extremism that views the defense of an accused killer of an abortion provider as a cause celebre?
Joe Scar is DC royalty now, of course:
Washington kept “Morning Joe’s” Joe Scarborough up past his bedtime last night, as The Week magazine’s Margaret Carlson hosted a book party in her Georgetown home for the MSNBC host and his new book, “The Last Best Hope.”
Attendees included: Alan Greenspan, Andrea Mitchell, Dana Milbank, Chris Licht, Betsy Fischer, Tammy Haddad, Chris Matthews, Adam Verdugo, James Bennet, Ana Marie Cox, Norah O’Donnell, Steve McMahon, Frank Foer, Juleanna Glover, Jayne Sandman, Evan Thomas, Michael Isikoff, Gordon Peterson, Sally Quinn, Luke Russert, Rick Klein, Marc Adelman, Bill Press, Jonathan Capehart, Karen Finney, John Coale, Mark Whittaker, Ashley Parker, Frank Coleman and Mark Ein.
Good Lord, the Beltway media-industrial complex is a swamp.