President Donald Trump attacked the hosts of the talk show “Morning Joe” in a pair of early-morning tweets on Thursday. The president labeled Joe Scarborough “Psycho Joe,” and Mika Brzezinski “low I.Q. Crazy Mika.”
“I heard poorly rated @Morning_Joe speaks badly of me (don’t watch anymore),” he wrote. “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!”
An MSNBC spokesperson issued the following statement in response to the tweets: “It’s a sad day for America when the president spends his time bullying, lying and spewing petty personal attacks instead of doing his job.”
Shortly after Trump’s tweets were deployed, Brzezinski tweeted out a photo of the back of a box of Cheerios, which showed the phrase “made for little hands.”
First Lady Melania Trump said during the campaign that she wanted to address problems of cyberbullying as one of her signature initiatives.
Her communications director, Stephanie Grisham, released a statement in which she said, “As the First Lady has stated publicly in the past, when her husband gets attacked, he will punch back 10 times harder.”
Brzezinski is the daughter of the late Zbigniew Brzezinski, who was the National Security Advisor to President Jimmy Carter. Scarborough formerly served as a Republican representative of Florida’s first district between 1995 and 2001. The co-hosts confirmed in May that they were engaged.
Although it remains unclear what triggered Trump’s attack on the MSNBC hosts, they have had a love-hate relationship with Trump over the past few years, and been especially critical of his presidency. Scarborough tweeted on Wednesday that “The men and women of @CNN have every reason to take great pride in their work. #RealNews,” directly contradicting the president’s war on the news network. The hosts had also been critical of the president Thursday morning after a Washington Post report revealed that at least five Trump properties had hanging a fake Time magazine cover showing Trump.
CNN tweeted in response to the event, “We stand with @MSNBC’s @MorningMika and @JoeNBC.”
Trump’s comment drew some condemnation on Capitol Hill, including from Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who has sometimes been a critic of the president.
“Mr. President, your tweet was beneath the office and represents what is wrong with American politics, not the greatness of America.”
Another Trump critic, Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.), tweeted, “Please just stop. This isn’t normal and it’s beneath the dignity of your office.”
Mark Kornblau, senior vice president of communications for the NBCUniversal News Group, wrote on Twitter that he “never imagined a day when I would think to myself, ‘It is beneath my dignity to respond to the President of the United States.”