MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” aired multiple anonymously-sourced reports from President-elect Donald Trump’s inner circle aimed at senior adviser Kellyanne Conway, leading Conway to charge that the hosts’ reporting was “sexist.”
Near the top of the show Monday morning, co-host Mika Brzezinski announced that she had new information to report from “two sources at the top of the Trump transition team.” She said the sources confirmed to MSNBC that Trump “was furious at Kellyanne Conway’s comments on Sunday suggesting Trump betrayed his supporters by even considering Mitt Romney for a position in his cabinet.”
“‘Kellyanne went rogue at Donald Trump’s expense at the worst possible time,’ a source familiar with Trump’s thinking said,” Brzezinski read to the camera.
Brzezinski said that Trump’s top aides told MSNBC they were “baffled” by Conway’s comments and that Conway was pushing her own agenda.
Last week and over the weekend, Conway, who was Trump’s campaign manager and is now a senior adviser to the President-elect, voiced concerns about rumors that Trump is considering Romney to be his secretary of state. On Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Conway said she felt “compelled” to speak out publicly on behalf of Trump supporters who were opposed to Romney.
“I’m all for party unity, but I’m not sure we have to pay for that with the secretary of state position,” she said.
Co-host Joe Scarborough delivered what he said was a response from Conway in the show’s second hour, although it was unclear if he was directly quoting her.
“And we have a response from Kellyanne Conway, who says about our reporting this morning, it is sexist,” Joe Scarborough deadpanned. “She says she can have any job she wants and is thinking about taking a role inside and outside of the campaign.”
“Is she suggesting that the people that she’s working with, the three people at the top of the Trump transition campaign are sexist?” he asked. “Because that’s where all the sourcing comes from, people closest to Donald Trump.”
Panelist Mike Barnacle said later of the sexism charge, glancing at Mark Halperin’s cell phone, “I can report having been looking over his shoulder, she’s talking about us. The media.”
A senior producer for “Morning Joe” also tweeted that Conway called the report “false.”
Later, Scarborough claimed he could report on Conway’s motivation for attacking Romney.
“Kellyanne doesn’t have a job yet and she’s angry about that. She hasn’t been offered the job she wants. No, she is. I can report that,” he said.
This post has been updated.