Video with Cheney Fighting for Breath Leaves Mika Brzezinski Laughing
After MSNBC's Morning Joe played a clip from the Late Show with David Letterman that mocked Dick Cheney's heart condition, co-host Mika Brzezinski couldn't control her own laughter as other panel members wondered what was so funny.
The Letterman clip was a faux-promo for an imaginary TV show called "The Dick Cheney Story." As the title song from the Mary Tyler Moore Show plays merrily in the background, images appear of Cheney wielding a gun, sitting in a wheelchair, and undergoing open-heart surgery.
The clip closes with footage of Cheney fighting to get a breath of air over an "MTM Enterprises" logo, clearly mocking the lion roar that graces the MGM Studios logo. When the cameras switched back to the Morning Joe panel, Brzezinski was doubled over in laughter. It took her almost a minute to recover.
Time's Mark Halperin remarked that he found the video to be in poor taste. Co-host Joe Scarborough agreed and added that he thought it "mean-spirited and hateful." He wondered aloud why his colleague thought it so hilarious.
Journalist Carl Bernstein was also laughing, either at Brzezinski's hysteria or at the tasteless clip. However, co-host Willie Geist voiced that the "the two of them," meaning Brzezinski and Bernstein, loved the video. "They love it, the two of them," he remarked as he looked on at their laughter.
A transcript of the segment, which aired on April 4 at 7:31 a.m. EDT, is as follows:
JOE SCARBOROUGH: What? What's wrong with you? What's wrong with you? What, you think that's funny?
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: (Laughing)
MARK HALPERIN: I thought it was in bad taste.
SCARBOROUGH: I thought it was in bad taste, and you're thinking it's funny?
BRZEZINSKI: I'm sorry. (Laughs)
SCARBOROUGH: That's funny to you? If that were a liberal, you would just be - uh - you'd be doing your whole -
BRZEZINSKI: That was so sick.
SCARBOROUGH: - diet -
BRZEZINSKI: I usually don't laugh - (Laughs)
CARL BERNSTEIN: (Unintelligble) (Laughs)
SCARBOROUGH: Look at this.
WILLIE GEIST: They love it, the two of them.
SCARBOROUGH: They love it. And what does that tell you about them? I thought it was mean-spirited, and hateful.
BRZEZINSKI: Oh please change the topic.
- Matt Hadro is News Analysis intern at the Media Research Center. You can follow him on Twitter here.