— MSNBC (@MSNBC) May 10, 2017
Whatever the reason, Donald Trump’s decision to fire FBI Director James Comey late Tuesday is no laughing matter. The shocking termination of one of the 2016 presidential election’s most controversial figures, whose (in)actions stirred plenty of criticism from all sides, is quite serious. Yet Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov decided to joke sarcastically about Comey’s firing after a reporter asked whether or not it would affect his meetings with State Secretary Rex Tillerson and Trump during a short press conference Wednesday morning.
“Does the Comey firing cast a shadow over your talks?” MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell asked Lavrov following Tillerson’s brief remarks to reporters. “Was he fired?” he retorted in feigned surprise. “You’re kidding! You’re kidding!” As the brief exchange came to a close, Tillerson looked on and smiled briefly before Lavrov joined him in exiting the press conference.
Despite the seriousness of the context, however, the recently engaged Morning Joe co-hosts couldn’t resist laughing at how completely ridiculous Lavrov’s response was. “I’m sorry. There is only one Sergey Lavrov,” laughed Joe Scarborough. “He is just resentment and contempt towards the rest of the world.” Mika Brzezinski added with an overdone accent, “We do it differently in Russia.”
“You gotta love it, Sergey Lavrov,” Mitchell later said. “At least he’s a foreign minister with a sense of humor. He can be… he’s wily, he’s crafty, he’s experienced. He has run circles around all numbers of American secretaries of state.”