'Morning Joe' hosts accuse Trump of blackmailing them with negative National Enquirer story

Joe Scarborough and Mika BrzezinskiFrederick M. Brown/Getty ImagesJoe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski.

Top White House staffers threatened the cohosts of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” with a negative story in the National Enquirer unless the hosts begged President Donald Trump to stop it, the hosts charged Friday.

The MSNBC hosts, Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski, made the allegations in a Washington Post op-ed after the president bashed them in tweets Thursday morning.

“This year, top White House staff members warned that the National Enquirer was planning to publish a negative article about us unless we begged the president to have the story spiked,” Scarborough and Brzezinski wrote. “We ignored their desperate pleas.”

Trump responded to the allegation in a tweet Friday morning.

“Watched low rated @Morning_Joe for first time in long time,” Trump tweeted. “FAKE NEWS. He called me to stop a National Enquirer article. I said no! Bad show.”

Scarborough quickly shot back.

“Yet another lie,” he tweeted in response to Trump. “I have texts from your top aides and phone records. Also, those records show I haven’t spoken with you in many months.”

Trump has had a contentious relationship with the MSNBC hosts. Before he ran for president, Trump was friendly with Brzezinski and Scarborough, and they were initially receptive to his candidacy. But they have since pivoted to criticising him heavily on-air.

The feud escalated this week when he tweeted that Brzezinski once visited his Florida estate, Mar-a-Lago, while she was “bleeding from a face-lift.”

The hosts discussed the allegations on the show Friday morning:


This is a chilling story. https://t.co/HYJgBnajOy via @Morning_Joe https://t.co/6UCEHzfOET
— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) June 30, 2017

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