Aaron Schock Defends Shirtless Surfing Photo on “Morning Joe”

The Republican congressman from Illinois tries (and failed) to steer conversation toward weightier topics

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U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock of Illinois planned to address immigration reform, among other serious topics, on Monday's edition of Morning Joe, but all anybody wanted to talk about was that viral photo of the Republican congressman riding a surboard -- without a shirt -- in Hawaii.

"I'm gonna give you some media advice," said Mika Brzezinski, co-host of the MSNBC political chat show, telling Schock: "Your staff should not Instagram you on your Instagram, so then it looks like you Instagrammed yourself looking hot on a surfboard -- that's needy."

Laughing, Schock responded: "That's my Instagram and I control my Instagram. I put up the photos and there's a reason it's a private account -- but, as you know, in public office nothing's private so I just learned that anything I post to my friends and my family could end up on Morning Joe."

(Earlier this year, he moved his Instagram account to private.)

Schock -- who asserted he's "never been bashful about being in shape" (neither is Paul Ryan, for that matter) -- managed to squeeze in some talking points about his push for bipartisan action on immigration reform, congressional tour of Asia and the launch of a "fitness caucus."

"Let's launch it," teased Brzezinski, interrupting to arm wrestle the politician.

Watch below:

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