ABC News’ Teddy Davis and Lindsey Ellerson report:
When White House press secretary Robert Gibbs appeared on MSNBC’s "Morning Joe" on Tuesday, he turned the tables on host Joe Scarborough and asked the former Republican congressman if he is eyeing the Senate seat being vacated in 2010 by retiring Sen. Mel Martinez, R-Fla.
"Joe, is it really going to be Senator Scarborough?" asked Gibbs.
Mika Brzezinski, Scarborough’s MSNBC co-host, chimed in saying: "You know, all these people, Robert, keep calling him, asking him to run."
Scarborough attempted to laugh off the suggestion, saying, "Yes, right, whatever. Absolutely not. . . . Absolutely not."
Per a Monday story in the Sarasota Herald Tribune, Scarborough likes the influence he has as a broadcaster the former Florida Republican congressman may run for office again, perhaps the U.S. Senate in 2010.
"I haven’t closed it off," Scarborough told the Sarasota Herald Tribune.
The former Republican congressman was much more guarded about the prospect of a Senate run when he was asked about it on "Morning Joe."
‘[H]ere’s my problem, Robert. I don’t really think it would be good to run in 2010 with a party that is actively associating itself with the Taliban."
Scarborough invoked the Taliban because Rep. Pete Sessions, R-Texas, the chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC), told editors of National Journal’s The Hotline last week that Republicans understand insurgency "a little bit more because of the Taliban."
In his interview with The Hotline, Sessions quickly added that he is not "trying to say the Republican Party is the Taliban" while maintaining that insurgency tactics may be needed for the House GOP to wrest control from the House’s Democratic leadership.
Not accepting Scarborough’s professed denial of interest in running for the Senate, Gibbs quipped, "Mika, all I’ve got to say is, ‘Morning Mika’ has a nice ring to it."