MSNBC historian gobsmacked by Trump ‘grifters’: ‘I’ve been shocked by my own naïveté’
President Donald Trump during a press conference in Trump Tower (Screenshot)

MSNBC's Joe Scarborough said Donald Trump never expected to win the election -- but once he did, he and his associates immediately started cashing in.


The "Morning Joe" host and historian Jon Meacham were flabbergasted by reports that disgraced national security adviser Mike Flynn started using his position to conduct business deals 11 minutes into the inauguration speech.

"I've been shocked by my own naïveté about this, about the grifter factor with this crowd and the attempt to try and profit in real time from the presidency," said Meacham, executive editor at Random House.

"A lot of us are accustomed to seeing, and perhaps questioning sometimes, how former presidents make money and build their post-presidential lives," Meacham continued. "We've just cut out the middleman here, and this is example 7,000 of how the Trump circle has basically tried to line their own pockets at a time when they're supposed to be managing and marshaling power on behalf of all of us."

Scarborough said Trump ran his campaign as a money-making venture, so it was not surprising the real estate developer and former reality TV star conducted his administration the same way.

"Donald Trump didn't expect to win, basically told us as much," Scarborough said. "He won, but they were looking -- it was all about money. They were making money, building the Trump brand, making it huge, maybe start a TV network, what was going to happen after this, then they won. The remarkable thing is, it's still about making money. I think we are all a little naïve."