Sean Hannity dedicated an entire segment of his Thursday night show to excoriating MSNBC host Joe Scarborough, who he called "a left-wing journalist."
Scarborough, the co-host of "Morning Joe" and a former Republican congressman, has been a vocal critic of the GOP on gun control, the budget and confirmation hearings, and during the 2012 election. Hannity told the Media Research Center's Brent Bozell on Thursday that he "used to be friends with Joe" before his time at MSNBC.
"Let’s just get your reaction, because we have Joe back in his congressman days — now he’s doing the liberal ‘Morning Joe’ show and he's the NBC version of what a, quote, ‘conservative’ is," Hannity said. "What do you make of that?"
"Well, I think that there are two issues going on here," Bozell began. "One is if you take that position, close your eyes — that is Chris Matthews. That’s Al Sharpton. That is the most radical of the radical left position that the NRA is going on and hoping people would die so they can make money off of it. That’s the kind of Occupy Wall Street language that you hear out there. I mean, it is radical kook stuff. That is Joe Scarborough in his own words. But the second thing is that it is a complete reversal of what Joe Scarborough made himself famous on, and it is a complete reversal on what he still maintains he is, which is a Republican in good standing."
Later, Hannity pointed to Scarborough speaking out against Republican senators for rejecting background checks for gun purchases. "He's gone radical left," Bozell said. "Fine, but Joe, please my buddy, never call yourself a conservative again."
Scarborough responded to the segment on Friday's "Morning Joe." After discussing Senators Heidi Heitkamp and Kelly Ayote's votes against expanded background checks for gun purchases, he said that he received a call about the "crazy" NRA digging up his 1994 questionnaire on gun rights.
"And then last night on Fox," Scarborough said, "they had this entire segment that was just pushed by the NRA about how I’m a big liberal for taking Wayne LaPierre‘s stance in 1999. They’re really, really nervous."
It's not the first time that Hannity has criticized Scarborough. The MSNBC host is frequently the target of critics who call him a "RINO," or "Republican in name only." He has railed against those critics before on air, going off on right-wing bloggers during the Republican primary election and once telling them to "shut the hell up."