Florida Gov. Rick Scott was kicked off of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe”on Thursday after he refused to directly answer a question about GOP frontrunner Donald Trump.
After the governor said he would not endorse any candidate before Tuesday’s Florida primary, host Joe Scarborough asked Scott about Trump stating the day before that “Islam hates us.”
“Do you think that Muslims in the state of Florida hate America?” Scarborough said.
Scott dodged the question.
“Well, as you know if Florida we’re the best melting pot in the world,” he said.
“After the Paris bombings I did ask the federal government to not allow any more Syrian refugees to come into Florida until we vetted them,” he continued. “I’m still concerned that the federal government is not vetting them but that’s what my concern is.”
Scarborough cut Scott off at the end of his answer.
“Just asking generally do you think that Muslims hate Americans, that Islam hates America as Donald Trump said last night?” he asked.
Scott then went into another answer that began similarly as his last, talking about his home state. But then Scarborough and co-host Mike Brzezinski immediately cut him off.
“We’re friends, I want you to answer the question,” Scarborough said. “Do you personally think that Islam is a religion that hates America?”
“We have a lot of Muslims that live in our state, we have a lot of Latin Americans that live in our state, we all get along,” Scott responded as Brzezinski called for the shows producer to cut the segment.
Scott then added that Trump and his fellow candidates can “talk about the things” they “want to talk about.”
Brzezinski, increasingly annoyed with Scott’s deflections, gave the governor one final chance to give a direct answer.
“Rick, Rick, Rick, I know you and Joe are friends and this is kind of awkward,” she said. “Can you answer the question or should we scoot?”
Scott didn’t, and then the segment ended.
Trump previously sparked a national firestorm in December when he proposed that the US temporarily bar all Muslims tourists and immigrants from entering the US following the Paris and San Bernardino terrorist attacks.
A month earlier, Trump seemed open to some kind of database for Muslim Americans, but he later distanced himself from the idea.
“We have to be very careful,” he said on CNN Wednesday. “And we can’t allow people coming into this country who have this hatred of the United States and of people that are not Muslim.”
Watch the uncomfortable exchange below:
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