Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski say Trump tried to blackmail them with Enquirer story

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 25:  Television hosts Joe Scarborough (L) and Mika Brzezinski attend "The Americans" Season 5 Premiere at DGA Theater on February 25, 2017 in New York City.  (Photo by Paul Zimmerman/WireImage)
caption arrowCaption
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 25: Television hosts Joe Scarborough (L) and Mika Brzezinski attend "The Americans" Season 5 Premiere at DGA Theater on February 25, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Paul Zimmerman/WireImage)

Credit: Paul Zimmerman

Credit: Paul Zimmerman

Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, cohost of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” responded to President Donald Trump’s tweet attacking the couple on Thursday by saying they question his mental state and suggested he was a part of a blackmail scheme over their private relationship.

On “Morning Joe” on Friday, the two appeared despite a scheduled vacation to answer Trump’s tweet.

"I heard poorly rated @Morning_Joe speaks badly of me (don't watch anymore). Then how come low I.Q. Crazy Mika, along with Psycho Joe, came to mar-a-Lago 3 nights in a row around New Year's Eve, and insisted on joining me. She was bleeding badly from a face-lift. I said no!" Trump wrote.

Scarborough and Brzezinski said Trump lied about their encounter, and suggested that his mental health had declined in the years they have known him. They said Brzezinski did not have a facelift but "She did have a little skin under her chin tweaked."

Scarborough also said that “people in the White House” were growing more concerned over Trump’s actions.

"The Donald Trump we knew before the campaign was a flawed character but one who still seemed capable of keeping his worst instincts in check," the two wrote in an opinion piece in the Washington Post published on Friday.

The two also suggested on Friday that Trump had some part in a blackmail scheme involving The National Enquirer tabloid. The Enquirer had reported that the two were becoming romantically involved after Scarborough divorced his wife and Brzezinski divorced her husband.

The couple recently acknowledged their relationship and became engaged.

Scarborough said on Friday that he and Brzezinski had been followed by an Enquirer reporter and that the suggestion was made by the White House that if the couple wanted the story about their relationship to “go away” Scarborough should call the president to ask him to “have it spiked.”

Trump is friends with the CEO of the Enquirer David Pecker.

Scarborough said he has received “several” calls from “top officials” at the White House. He did not name the officials, but suggested they were in the “top three” of the administration.

Scarborough also told a story about a veteran lawmaker called him after a White House meeting on health care to say Trump slammed the couple — particularly Brzezinski. “He scared me, because when he turned from you to Mika, he became so vicious...I don’t even know why I’m calling you, but I was just scared. I was scared for you guys,” Scarborough said of the conversation.

Trump was widely criticized by members of both parties and others following the tweet on Thursday.

Brzezinski said the tweets do not worry her for herself, but for the country.

"It is unbelievably alarming that this president is so easily played — he's so easily played — by a cable news host," Brzezinski said. "What does that say to our allies?"
Trump tweeted about health care on Friday morning but didn't address the "Morning Joe" firestorm.

Update 9:20 a.m. ET: President trump tweeted this after the show this morning.

About the Author