The likes of Kirsten Gillibrand parade themselves as paragons of avenging feminist virtue in calling on Sen. Al Franken to resign. But the Morning Joe crew sees another motive behind the Democrat’s move to force Franken out: “cynical politics.”

Mika Brzezinski, Joe Scarborough, and Willie Geist all made similar points: the move to defenestrate Franken is really about Democrats trying to give themselves the high ground on the issue of sexual misconduct. The Dems’ real target is Roy Moore.

So, suggested Scarborough, in order to clear their decks to go after Moore, Dems threw due process out the window for Franken, and have resorted to “mob rule.”

Note: Mika also expressed the concern that in treating all cases of sexual misconduct the same, the women’s movement could actually be set back.  Fretted Mika: is this a “sea change” or a “tsunami that’s going to wash away all the progress?” Her concern seemed to be that women might be less likely to be hired, or viewed more warily in the workplace, if any allegation of sexual misconduct resulted in the firing of the accused male.

JOE SCARBOROUGH: Somebody we had on set said, I prefer due process over mob rule. So they said, okay, we’re going to have due process, we’re going to have a Senate ethics committee. And then suddenly — boom! Everybody says throw him out now.

. . .

WILLIE GEIST: Heidi, I think Mika’s right, though. There are also some cynical politics buried in here. And the name Roy Moore has to be part of this conversation. There’s the “whataboutism” from Republicans who say, how dare you get on your high horse with us about Roy Moore when you have Al Franken in your midst, when you have John Conyers in your midst?

HEIDI PRZYBYLA: So now it frees up —

WILLIE: Is that what you’re hearing on Capitol Hill as well?

PRZYBYLA: Already, Willie. So now it frees up Democrats, because they have now publicly called for the resignation of all three of their guys [Conyers, Franken and Nevada congressman Ruben Kihuen] who’ve been accused of sexual harassment or sexual assault, and it comes right as we’re coming up on this special election with Roy Moore.

. . .

WILLIE: You could watch, Mika, every day, interviews on television with senators twisted in knots over the question we would put to them: how can you come out and condemn Roy Moore when you have all of these allegations against Al Franken. Although there are obviously different allegations, it was an impossible question for them to answer.

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: I understand the politics, but I think when we look at the details of all these stories, it’s far more complicated, and possibly damaging to the [women’s] movement.

Morning Joe: “Cynical Politics” Behind Dem Ousting of Al Franken

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