Scarborough And Todd Get Into On-Air Shouting Match Over Bergdahl’s Dad

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MSNBC’s Chuck Todd and Joe Scarborough got into a shouting match Thursday on “Morning Joe” over Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl’s father in a heated debate that ultimately centered around the host’s own parenting skills.

The exchange began with Scarborough talking about a photo of President Obama with Bergdahl’s parents.

Todd tried to steer the conversation away from the father, Bob Bergdahl, contending that the POW’s parents shouldn’t be subjected to a pundit’s scrutiny, but Scarborough wasn’t having that.

So when Todd objected to Scarborough’s characterization of the elder Bergdahl as a “man who’s reaching out to pro-Taliban forces [and] talking about killing Americans,” the show’s namesake reacted the way he usually does when he’s interrupted.

“Wait,” Todd pleaded.

“Who wants to wait me here?” a visibly angry Scarborough shot back.

Todd held firm, but so did Scarborough. Crosstalk ensued.

“No, but Joe, Joe, let’s not — don’t criticize the parents. Don’t criticize the parents in here,” Todd said.

Scarborough doesn’t see it that way and he went on to give a noisy lecture about what he would have done had his own son grown as disillusioned with the military as Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl apparently did prior to his 2009 disappearance.

He “would call his commander,” Scarborough said. He would order the commander to get his son “to a military base in Germany.”

Todd considered this “backseat driving how someone parents,” but Scarborough said he’s qualified to weigh-in.

“No, that is not backseat driving,” he scolded Todd. “I am a father!”

Todd was rendered speechless, shaking his head and mustering an exasperated “wow.” His involvement in the discussion was over, but Scarborough wasn’t finished. He continued to relate his own experiences as a father to the Bergdahl saga and at one point he appeared to ask his usually obsequious panelists for some support.

“I’m sorry, am I all alone here, world?” he asked.

Scarborough elaborated on Twitter after the show.

There have been plenty of questions raised about Sgt. Bergdahl since the White House announced his release over the weekend, the result of a prisoner swap involving five Taliban detainees who had been held at Guantanamo Bay. Some former members of his platoon have accused him of desertion.

The soldier expressed deep misgivings with the military in emails sent to his father shortly before he reportedly walked off his base in Afghanistan. Bob Bergdahl’s response to his son’s final email contained the subject line “OBEY YOUR CONSCIENCE!” And in a now-deleted tweet written days before his son’s rescue, the elder Bergdahl said he was “working to free all Guantanamo prisoners” and that “God will repay for the death of every Afghan child, ameen!”

It didn’t take long for conservatives to turn their anger on Bergdahl and his father. In fact, the vitriol may have even caught a few Republicans off guard, with some GOP politicians forced to scrub their initial online praise of Bergdahl and his rescue.

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