On MSNBC’s Morning Joe today, co-host Joe Scarborough said Republican presidential candidates in the future should “stand up” to the “bullies” in conservative talk radio.

“These type of people who have the ability to make what [George W.] Bush called the compassionate conservative argument,” Scarborough said, “get thrown to the side because they don’t sound enough like Glenn Beck or a blogger.”

Political commentator Mike Barnicle asked if there’s “enough room” for a moderate candidate like Mitt Romney “to breathe” among the “shrillness of voices on both sides.”

“What do you do do a school yard bully?” Scarborough replied. “You punch them in the face. You think any of these people in talk radio — if they’re punched in the face by a Republican nominee — do you think they would push back? No, they’re cowards. They’re bullies. Punch them in the face and they back off.”

Scarborough said Romney’s failure to “stand up to these bullies” lead to his defeat in the election.