Morning Joe’s hosts cut off an interview with Florida Gov. Rick Scott on Thursday when he refused to answer repeated questions about Donald Trump’s recent claim that Islam hates America.
Host Joe Scarborough asked Scott about Trump’s interview on Wednesday with CNN, where he said there is a “tremendous hatred” by Muslims for Americans.
When Scott repeatedly refused to answer whether he agreed, the MSNBC hosts, frequently accused of being too cozy with Trump, abruptly ended the interview.
“You’re a friend of Donald Trump,” Scarborough said. “Would you tell your friend Donald Trump that he should walk back his statements that Islam hates America, that Islam hates us? Do you think Muslims in the state of Florida hate America?”
“Well, as you know in Florida, we’re the best melting pot in the world,” Scott said. “We love everybody coming to our state. After the Paris bombings, I did ask the federal government to not allow any more Syrian refugees to come in Florida until we vetted them. I’m still concerned that the federal government’s not vetting them.”
“That could be a reasonable policy position if you wanted to debate that,” Scarborough said. “I’m just asking generally, do you think that Muslims hate Americans, that Islam hates America, as Donald Trump said last night?”
“I can tell you what’s going on in Florida–” Scott said.
Mika Brzezinski cut in, saying that wasn’t the question.
“No, I want to know what’s going on in your head, Governor. I want you to answer the question,” Scarborough said. “Do you personally think that Islam as a religion hates America?“
“So, Joe, what I can tell you in our state is we have a lot of Muslims that live our state, a lot of Latin Americans that live in our state,” Scott said.
“Wrap it,” Brzezinski said.
“We all get along. We love people moving to our state and coming here as tourists. We’re a great melting pot … Donald Trump can talk about the things he wants to talk about,” Scott said.
“No, no,” Brzezinski said. “That’s not answering any questions … Rick, Rick, Rick, I know you and Joe are friends and this is kind of awkward, but can you answer the question, or should we scoot?”
Scott again dodged, talking about Florida and saying he looked forward to Thursday night’s debate. The show cut his mic and ended the interview.
After a commercial break, Brzezinski slammed Scott for being “weak” and “pathetic.”