Tuesday, March 14, 2017
Much To Do About Nothing. Is This Not Censoring Of The News?
WATCH: MSNBC’s Mika Calls For Kellyanne Conway To Resign
On Friday, Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski ratcheted up her attack on
presidential adviser Kellyanne Conway, apparently advising her to resign,
or as Brzezinski phrased it, to “pack it up.”
Brzezinski had already essentially banned Conway from Morning Joe; she
had revealed that Conway had tried to book herself on Morning Joe, then
added, “I won’t do it.”
On Friday, Brzezinski and co-host Joe Scarborough were discussing the criticism of the White House by the Office of Governmental Ethics for
not disciplining Conway after she urged Americans to patronize Ivanka
Trump’s fashion line.
The exchange went like this:
Brzezinski: The government ethics office is criticizing the White House’s refusal to discipline Kellyanne Conway for her live television endorsement of Ivanka Trump’s clothing line.
Scarborough: Is that bad? Are you not supposed to do that? Wait. Are you not supposed to use your position in Washington to promote clothes?
Brzezinski: Oh, my God. No, you’re really not. No.
Scarborough: Who could have ever guessed that?
Brzezinski: And Ivanka doesn’t want you to do that. Nobody does.
Scarborough: No, she doesn’t. You’re not doing anybody a favor.
Brzezinski: So stop thinking you do. The ethics director fired off a letter to top members of the oversight committee because in Washington, there’s really nothing to do, so this is important. Anyhow. The watchdog also said it was disturbed by the administration’s, quote, extraordinary assertion that White House employees are exempt from some of those regulations. I will say it’s time for her to probably pack it up.
In February, Conway had responded to the news that Nordstrom had dropped
Ivanka Trump’s fashion line by saying on Fox News, "I'm going to give a
free commercial here. Go buy it today, everybody." Federal ethics regulations
ban government employees from using their position to endorse any product
On Thursday, the head of the Office of Government Ethics, Walter Shaub,
sent a letter to Stefan Passantino, President Trump's ethics lawyer, saying
he was still "concerned about Ms. Conway's misuse of position." Shaub
believes Conway should have been disciplined, rather than “counseled.” Shaub
wrote, "I am more concerned about the extraordinary assertion that 'many'
[ethics] regulations are inapplicable" to Trump’s employees.