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MSNBC

MSNBC is a 24-hour newschannel owned by NBCUniversal, a Comcast company. MSNBC shares a newsroom and studio with NBC News at 30 Rockefeller Plaza. Launched on July 15, 1996, MSNBC was originally a joint venture between NBC and Microsoft. MSNBC acquired Microsoft’s stake in MSNBC TV in 2005 and acquired control of msnbc.com from Microsoft in 2012. Reaching more than 95 million households worldwide, MSNBC offers a 24-hour schedule of live news coverage, political opinion programs and documentaries. Phil Griffin is the president of MSNBC.

Inaugural ‘Morning Joe’ Guest Wins Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay

John RidleyTV news was part of one Oscar winner’s resume, as inaugural “Morning Joe” roundtable guest John Ridley won best adapted screenplay for “12 Years a Slave.”

“What you need to know about John Ridley, as incredibly talented and great as he is, and a gentleman that he is…he really got his roots here at “Morning Joe,” Willie Geist said on this morning’s show. “Seven years ago, in Secaucus…Joe, Mika, myself, and John Ridley sat around a table. It was so cool to see John win an Oscar.”

The show’s twitter handle congratulated their former colleague this morning.

RidleyFor all of the big social media moments from Oscars 2014, check out our sister-site Lost Remote’s full Oscars live-blog.

Ridley on “Morning Joe” pre-Oscars after the jump.

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Al Sharpton: ‘Mr. O’Reilly and Others Can Be There or Not, But I’ll Be There’

SharptonAl Sharpton responded last night to President Obama’s shout-out to him and Bill O’Reilly during the “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative speech held yesterday at the White House.

“Yes, Bill O’Reilly and I have differences…and we will continue to,” Sharpton said on “PoliticsNation.”

“What is more important to me, is not who I differ with, but who I can stand up for and stand up with.”

The differences between Sharpton and O’Reilly played out last summer, when the two hosts engaged in a back-and-forth over race.

Sharpton added that people must stand together to help men of color: “Mr. O’Reilly and others can be there or not, but I’ll be there, if I have to be there by myself.”

On the “O’Reilly Factor,” O’Reilly didn’t mention the president’s shout-out to Sharpton and him, but had an extensive interview with Obama senior adviser Valerie Jarrett, giving her his ideas on how to make the program work.

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Mika’s Father Returns to ‘Morning Joe,’ Compares Her to Family Dog

Mika fatherIt only took a week for Mika Brzezinski to nab the elusive booking that escaped her last Friday: her father Zbigniew Brzezinski.

“Joining us now from Washington, a man that is very difficult to book,” Mika said. “I’m serious, you can’t get him on this show…at least I couldn’t book him,” she added.

The show then played a montage of all of the elder Brzezinski’s appearances on other networks—including other MSNBC shows—over the past week discussing the tumultuous situation in Ukraine, ending with last Friday’s “Morning Joe,” where Mika realized her dad wasn’t coming on.

“He’s here! It’s like Santa Claus,” co-host Joe Scarborough shouted, telling Mika her father is very busy and she has to be more patient.

“Totally,” Zbigniew answered Scarborough about whether his daughter is impatient. “You remind me in terms of personality of someone that we nowadays in our household call Daisy.”

“Very cute, very charming, a bit unpredictable…I won’t go into details,” Zbigniew said on Daisy—the family dog. “Thanks dad, I’m sort of diminished now,” Mika concluded.

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Can Pres. Obama Unite Bill O’Reilly and Al Sharpton?

Obama Sharpton O'ReillyAt his “My Brother’s Keeper” initiative speech this afternoon, President Obama slipped in a shout-out to Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly and MSNBC’s Al Sharpton as symbolism of putting differences aside to get things done.

Presenting his plan to help men of color, the president called out both cable news hosts present in the White House audience.

“If I can persuade Sharpton and O’Reilly to be in the same meeting,” the president said, generating a round of laughter and clapping. “Then it means that there are people of good faith who want to get some stuff done…even if we don’t agree on everything.”

Will the shout-out produce an on-air makeup between O’Reilly and Sharpton over last summer’s feud that wouldn’t end? Stay tuned.

Former Montana Governor Joins MSNBC as a Contributor

MontanaFormer Pennsylvania Governor and MSNBC contributor Ed Rendell now has a fellow former Democratic Governor as a colleague: former Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer.

Schweitzer told the Associated Press he will appear once or twice a week from a studio being built in his home, and won’t just be giving Democratic talking points.

“At Fox News they’ve got it down that Democrats are always wrong and Republicans are always right. Too much of MSNBC is saying the Democrats are always right and Republicans are always wrong,” he said. “When the Democrats have it wrong, I’ll say it and when the Republicans have it wrong, I’ll say it.”

Schweitzer was introduced as a contributor on last night’s “Ed Show,” where he discussed the Keystone XL pipeline.

Sen. Ted Cruz Likes Hannity’s ‘Fearlessness,’ CNN Dana Bash’s Hard, But Fair Questions

Texas Senator Ted Cruz has become a media fixture since being sworn into office last year, appearing on various Fox News programs while drawing scorn from many MSNBC hosts.

In an interview with POLITICO’s Mike Allen, Cruz gave his thoughts on the big three cable news networks.

“Unsurprisingly, if I’m watching something, it’s probably Fox News,” Cruz said. “I’m a big Sean Hannity fan. I wouldn’t call him a newscaster necessarily. I think Sean has a fearlessness that is welcome.”

Cruz then gave a “surprising” compliment to CNN’s Dana Bash, who interviewed him last week: “I told her that I appreciated that she’s been willing to ask hard questions of Democrats also and not a lot of reporters do that.”

And on MSNBC, Cruz claimed the network labels conservatives as either stupid, evil, or crazy.

When the Wrong Food Gets in Mika’s Way

Cheetos DumpMountain Dew

“Morning Joe” co-host Mika Brzezinski wrote a book last year called “Obsessed,” about America’s obsession with bad food. This morning, ahead of the FDA’s announcement of an overhaul of nutrition labels, Brzezinski demonstrated where she thinks junk food belongs.

“There’s just no need for a nutrition label,” Brzezinski said as she dumped Mountain Dew, Cheetos and Ruffles in the trash. “It’s not food.”

Mika’s free-for-all after the jump. Read more

Did Media Coverage of Controversial Arizona Bill Help Lead to Veto?

BrewerBillAll three cable news networks carried Arizona Governor Jan Brewer‘s press conference last night announcing her veto of a controversial bill that would allow businesses’ and people to refuse service to LGBT people based on religious beliefs.

After the announcement, Anderson Cooper replayed parts of an interview he did the night before with one of the bill’s sponsor, Arizona State Senator Nancy Barto.

Cooper asked her six separate times if she could name one example that had already happened where people of faith had been forced to do something against their religious beliefs.  “I can raise a hypothetical,” Barto said, citing a hypothetical same sex marriage where a photographer who didn’t want to provide service wouldn’t have protection.

Governor Brewer, shown above vetoing the bill, had similar phrasing to Cooper during her announcement: “I have not heard of one example in Arizona where business owners religious liberty has been violated.”

Fox News broke into “On the Record” with Shepard Smith reporting on the press conference. “I think Governor Brewer did the right thing,” New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte told Greta Van Susteren when FNC whipped back to “On the Record.”  Megyn Kelly led “The Kelly File” interviewing Family Research Council President Tony Perkins on the news out of Arizona. On Tuesday night, Kelly and Brit Hume wondered whether the bill was an “overreaction” by religious conservatives.

Over on MSNBC, Chris Hayes took over for Chris Matthews coming out of the press conference at 7:51pmET, still during “Hardball.” Hayes spoke with the Arizona Democratic Minority Leader Anna Tovar via phone on her reaction to the veto. Rachel Maddow led her show with news of the veto, covering the other states who are considering similar bills to Arizona. Lawrence O’Donnell noted the media’s impact on forcing a veto: “They got away with it until we focused on it…we the national media.” Read more

Joy Reid: MSNBC Doesn’t Just Plug People Into Their ‘Racial Box’

Appearing on HuffPost Live yesterday, new MSNBC host Joy Reid said she’s proud of MSNBC’s on-air diversity.

“Partly, it’s our audience…this is just good constituent service,” Reid said of the network’s substantial African-American audience, adding every network should be offering the diversity MSNBC does.

Reid also said she’s proud of MSNBC for not just “plugging people into their racial box,” suggesting they don’t just book minority guests based on stories specific to them.

“We don’t just say…’ah there’s a black issue, c’mon black person, let’s go and talk about it’…people can talk about everything.”

Reid suggested that Fox News’ audience demographics doesn’t call for them to be as diverse as MSNBC. Her comments on MSNBC diversity start around seven minutes in.

Ronan Farrow Won’t Be Talking About Family Controversy

ronan farrow_304x200A Page Six story this morning reports new MSNBC host Ronan Farrow‘s team are making reporters sign a form promising not to ask questions about his personal family controversy during a benefit he’ll be honored at tonight.

Farrow — who has publicly stood behind his sister Dylan’s accusations that she was sexually abused by Allen when she was 7, and tweeted about the abuse allegations during the Golden Globes — is receiving the Cronkite Award for Excellence in Exploration and Journalism at Reach the World’s 14th annual benefit at the Princeton Club. Reporters have been issued a tip sheet that includes stern “conditions” not to ask anything about Allen.

“The theme of the evening is global education and service,” it says. “All press are required to stay strictly on message. Any press who ask guests or Mr. Farrow about off-message topics will be immediately escorted out of the event.”

We’re hearing from MSNBC insiders that neither the network nor Ronan requested restrictions forbidding personal questions, and it’s the event’s PR firm making that condition.

“Ronan and his team did not request any restrictions on reporters questions,” a spokesperson for Farrow tells us. He’s set to receive the Cronkite Award for Excellence in Exploration and Journalism at tonight’s Reach the World benefit.

In two days on-air at MSNBC, Farrow has not mentioned anything relating to his personal life, which has been mired lately with back-and-forth allegations and denials of molestation between father Woody Allen and sister Dylan Farrow playing out in the media. Read more

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