President Donald Trump and Morning Joe co-host Joe Scarborough used to be friends. Trump would go on Scarborough’s show. They spoke highly of one another. Scarborough openly supported Trump in his presidential campaign, pissing off his NBC superiors in the process. But over the past year, the relationship disintegrated.
Now, in an illustration of just how wide the chasm has become, Trump is insinuating that Scarborough should be investigated for an “unsolved mystery” that took place in 2001.
Except, like most things Trump says, this is a heinous lie. Lori Klausutis was an intern working for Scarborough while he was a GOP representative in Florida. She was found dead in his district office. She was 28. The NY Daily News reports that the police deemed the death accidental, due to an undiagnosed heart condition. It was not a murder, nor was it “unsolved.”
The claim from Trump came during a mid-morning Twitter tantrum in which he praised himself and took repeated shots at NBC, which fired news anchor Matt Lauer for inappropriate conduct. Continuing his obsession with ratings, Trump even managed to get in a dig at Scarborough’s numbers:
It shouldn’t surprise us that Trump stooped to baseless claims about a woman’s death to insult a former friend, but it should scare us. Exploiting the death of an innocent staffer just to further a petty feud is a cruel, infantile thing to do. Trump is frequently cruel and infantile, so the only real news here is that he’s willing to go this far to hurt Joe Scarborough, a man Trump once considered a friend. They even met at Trump Tower to reconcile just a couple months ago. It’s almost like Trump will only be friends with you if you tell him how great he is, and will relentlessly attack you if he suspects disloyalty. (Or if you make fun of how small his hands are.)