MOURNING JOE

Mika Brzezinski, on Mark Halperin: ‘Nothing Has Been Proven’

After a day of soft-pedaling discussion of the sexual-harassment allegations against longtime Morning Joe panelist Mark Halperin on the MSNBC show, Mika Brzezinski put the snowballing scandal front and center Friday. She noted that “nothing has been proven or adjudicated here.” Saying she was speaking for herself and her fiancé and cohost Joe Scarborough, Brzezinski told viewers: “There’s something I need to say… Mark and Karen [Avrich, Halperin’s wife and the mother of their infant son] have been a part of Morning Joe’s extended family for years. They’re our friends and we believe it’s important to stand with our friends through even the most difficult of times. But it’s even more important to demand  the truth even when the facts appear to be extremely painful… I’ve spoken to and heard from some of these women. I feel their pain and understand the difficult position they were in because I’ve been through enough in this business to know what I hear… We’re not going to avoid the story just because he’s our friend. We’re going to cover it.” Brzezinski said she and Scarborough agreed with the network’s decision to kick the NBC News and MSNBC political analyst off the air. —Lloyd Grove