The comedian and radio show host Harry Shearer has audio of what sure sounds like a casual off-the-air exchange between Donald Trump and Morning Joe co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski. “You had me almost as a legendary figure,” Trump says at one point, apparently referring to a segment on that day’s show.
The recording comes at an uncomfortable moment for Joe and Mika, who are facing criticism for an allegedly cozy relationship with the Republican front-runner. CNN’s Dylan Byers reported that some NBC employees are disconcerted about the apparent friendship, and the visibly agitated hosts defended themselves on-air last week.
The audio starts at 21:25 in the Soundcloud embed above, or navigate here and click “Found Objects: are Joe & Mika tilted toward Trump?”
According to Shearer, the recording was taken during an off-the-air segment of Scarborough and Brzezinski’s “town hall” interview with Trump in Charleston, South Carolina, on February 17.
“I tell you what, the Bloomberg poll—all the polls out today look great in South Carolina,” Scarborough says at the beginning of the clip, likely referring to numbers which showed Trump in a large lead over his competitors in the state. (Trump went on to win the South Carolina primary.) Trump then asks the hosts if negative campaign ads against him are catching on, and both answer “no.”
Later, Brzezinski remarks that a clip from a rally that was played on that day’s Morning Joe was a “real wow moment,” and Trump makes the “legendary figure” comment in response.
The “wow moment” in question came when Trump invited two attendees at an event in North Augusta, S.C., onto the stage to speak. Here it is on that days’s Morning Joe:
“Quite powerful,” Scarborough remarks at the close of the clip.