High school drama personified…
Reveling in the added attention brought on by their little “spat” with President Donald Trump, MSNBC “Morning Joe” co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski said on Friday’s show the White House tried to blackmail them into giving positive coverage of the president.
…which is a lie, according to a top aide to the president.
Scarborough said Friday that three White House aides had “begged” him to apologize to the president or the National Enquirer would print an article exposing the recently engaged co-hosts’ romantic relationship — the piece ran in June.
But a source said Scarborough was the one begging, turning to Trump senior adviser Jared Kushner to ask about The Enquirer article, according to Fox News. This source also denied that the White House demanded an apology, as Scarborough claimed.
More from Fox News:
Scarborough asked Kushner if there was anything that could be done about the article, the source said, given Trump’s friendship with David Pecker, the chief executive of The Enquirer’s parent company, American Media. Kushner allegedly told Scarborough that the former Republican congressman needed to talk to the president himself about the issue, to which Scarborough replied that Trump was angry at him. The source said Kushner answered: “Well, then maybe you should apologize.”
It is Kushner’s recommendation that Scarborough speak with Trump that the MSNBC host is characterizing as extortion.
But the source told Fox News there was no quid pro quo, that Kushner was only saying if Scarborough wanted to get back on speaking terms with Trump, an apology may be in order.
The president took to Twitter at the end of Friday’s show to deny Scarborough’s take on events, saying he called them.
“Watched low rated @Morning_Joe for first time in long time. FAKE NEWS. He called me to stop a National Enquirer article. I said no! Bad show,” Trump tweeted.
Watched low rated @Morning_Joe for first time in long time. FAKE NEWS. He called me to stop a National Enquirer article. I said no! Bad show
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 30, 2017
Keeping the high school drama alive, Scarborough responded:
Yet another lie. I have texts from your top aides and phone records. Also, those records show I haven't spoken with you in many months. https://t.co/TZWiElo6Gs
— Joe Scarborough (@JoeNBC) June 30, 2017
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