This morning, MSNBC hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski issued an on-air apology for blaming Nancy Pelosi for flip-flopping on the Iraq war even though she actually opposed the intervention and voted against it from the beginning, something Foreign Policy fact-checked a few hours after the Morning Joe broadcast.
"We apologize for that mistake," said Brzezinski.
"We do," added Scarborough.
Oddly, the two hosts didn’t apologize for blaming Michigan Senator Carl Levin for flip-flopping on the war — an equally mistaken claim — and defended the segment as a whole.
"We actually showed several examples of [flip-flopping]," said Brzezinski.
"Several good examples!" interrupted Scarborough. "But we showed one bad example."
"I think the other examples were really interesting…. It was a great piece," Brzezinksi added.
But as we noted yesterday, Levin also voted against the Iraq War Resolution, and spoke fervently against administration rhetoric about the potential for Saddam Hussein to use a WMD against the United States. "He would not, in my judgment, initiate an attack with a weapon of mass destruction, because it would lead to his own destruction," Levin told Meet the Press in 2002. "He’s a survivalist. He is not a suicide bomber."
When asked if Sen. Levin was conceding the point that he was somehow culpable for the Iraq war, his chief of staff David Lyles told FP, "We certainly aren’t conceding that point. We will reach out to them and remind them of Senator Levin’s position."
Daniel W. Drezner is professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and a senior editor at The National Interest. Prior to Fletcher, he taught at the University of Chicago and the University of Colorado at Boulder. Drezner has received fellowships from the German Marshall Fund of the United States, the Council on Foreign Relations, and Harvard University. He has previously held positions with Civic Education Project, the RAND Corporation, and the Treasury Department.| Daniel W. Drezner |