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President Trump’s new communications director Anthony Scaramucci, who has proven to be a skilled scandal–mongerer just like his new boss, cited disgraced former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno in a bizarre CNN interview on Thursday. In that interview, Scaramucci, referencing Paterno, lectured CNN anchor Chris Cuomo about honor, dignity, and respect.

Scaramucci’s adulation of the late Paterno, whose career ended in disgrace in 2011 while his assistant coach, Jerry Sandusky, was convicted of sexually assaulting several boys over at least 15 years, raised eyebrows after “The Mooch” made the comments to CNN. But Scaramucci had been publicly expressing his admiration for Paterno for several years, tweeting in 2012 that he believed Paterno to be “an honorable man.”


Now another angle to Scaramucci’s fixation with Paterno has surfaced after the Hollywood Reporter discovered that the White House communications director is co–executive producing an upcoming HBO movie on Paterno’s life. The report notes that Scaramucci’s recently disclosed financial reports list the Edward R. Presman Film Corp., a company involved in the film, as a source of income.

In June, Scaramucci also tweeted that actor Al Pacino was set to play Paterno.

Perhaps we now have an indication of why Scaramucci might keep name–dropping Paterno, including in strange CNN rants about honor. But hey, with the White House as it is these days, why not use this new position to plug an upcoming movie. After all, everyone else at the White House seems to be doing it.