BALZ (1/29/07): But even those who want to see a woman elected to the White House worry that Clinton may not be able to win a general election, given her political baggage. "I think that it would be amazing to have her be our president," said Hollyanne Howe, a high school student. "I fear that if she is nominated, she won't be electable. I would love to see her get elected, but my biggest fear is that it won't happen and we'll get stuck with another President Bush or whomever else."First off, its odd that the Post includes a high school kid when it assembles a small group of Dem party activists. (They also included a married couple. That was lazy too.) But dont worry! Its also easy to find adult Dems expressing inchoate fears about the electability of their parties candidates. Balz closes todays dumb-ass report today with a second such comment, this time by an adult:
BALZ: "I really like Edwards," said Ann Bromley, a retired city worker. "I think he's intelligent and compassionate. I don't think he's electable, and I don't know why. Something is missing." Others nodded in agreement.Others nodded in agreement—good God! Is anyone dumber than our Dem Party activists? In fact, even as these party stalwarts spoke, Newsweek released another national poll. This poll, conducted last Wednesday and Thursday, showed Clinton leading McCain by six points (50-44) and Edwards leading McCain by four (48-44). In fact, it was the third straight Newsweek poll, in a span of two months, which showed Clinton ahead of McCain; she also leads Giuliani by three in this latest survey (49-46). But so what! Nothing stops us liberals and Dems from reciting the types of defeatist points which reporters then rush into national papers. Hillary Clinton is unelectable! Because of her political baggage! (Sometimes, were such perfect tools that we say its because shes too polarizing.) In short, the RNC doesnt need to exist. We liberals and Dems are now quite pleased to recite their talking-points for them.
SULLIVAN (1/28/07): I think shes been a very sensible senator. I think—find it hard to disagree with her on the war. But when I see her again, all me—all the cootie-vibes resurrect themselves. Im sorry—Bless their hearts! The panel shared a good solid laugh at Sullivans talk about Clintons cooties. Lets face it. If these pundits got any dumber, wed have to feed and dress them each morning. The Matthews Show would have one producer just to help tie their shoes.
PANEL: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!
HOWARD FINEMAN: Thats a technical term!
SULLIVAN: I must represent a lot of people. I actually find her positions appealing in many ways. I just cant stand her.
FINEMAN (continuing directly): In fairness to her, after, after the roll-out she had this week, the numbers in our poll—the Newsweek poll and others—were very positive, very powerful actually. Cooties notwithstanding.In fact, Clinton led McCain by seven in the Newsweek poll back in early December, long before last weeks events. And Fineman didnt say the thing it kills pundits to say; Fineman didnt specifically say that Clinton was ahead of McCain and Giuliani in several major polls. Viewers were left to puzzle about what sort of polls had been so powerful. But at least he made a first small step toward interjecting some relevant information. Not that it made a bit of difference to one ardent dumb-ass:
SULLIVAN (continuing directly): If you look at her polling all these years, it is absolutely dead straight-line. People who dont like her are not going to change their minds. And theyre about, over 40 percent.But Clintons polling isnt straight line—although, to be perfectly fair to Sullivan, hes probably too clueless to know that.
WASHINGTON POST (1/27/07): John Pomfret, a prize-winning reporter and foreign correspondent...was named yesterday to become editor of The Washington Post's Outlook Section....Regarding Glassers departure from Outlook, well say two things: Good-bye—and good riddance.
In his new role, which starts the first week in April, Pomfret succeeds Susan Glasser, who is assistant managing editor for national news.
DATE (1/21/07): Tuesday would have marked his sixth State of the Union address—and it might have been his best yet.Good God—what absolute nonsense! It could have been so great, were now told. We just picked out the wrong Bush!
The nation is in great shape, President Jeb Bush would have reported: record tax cuts propelling the economy to greater heights; a revolutionary school-vouchers program for the first time granting low-income parents real education choices; and, five years after the capture of Osama bin Laden, the final 20,000 U.S. troops returning home from Iraq.
The president would break into his fluent Spanish and wave at his Mexican-born wife, Columba, gazing at him from the balcony. The cameras would settle on their eldest, George P. Bush, 30, and commentators would speculate on whether the dashing lawyer would soon run for Congress and carry on the Bush dynasty.
Yet contrary to the best-laid plans of the Bush family, it won't be John Ellis "Jeb" Bush addressing the nation this week...
WASHINGTON POST EDITORIAL (1/28/07): ITS BECOME a fad among some conservatives to refer to the junior senator from Illinois by his full name: Barack Hussein Obama. This would be merely juvenile if it weren't so contemptible. Republican lobbyist Ed Rogers, on "Hardball," was one of the early adopters of this sleazy tactic. "Count me down as somebody who underestimates Barack Hussein Obama," he said. Radio host Rush Limbaugh, demonstrating his usual maturity, got a chuckle out of the senator's allegedly oversized ears, calling him "Barack Hussein Odumbo." And Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council issued this e-mail alert: "Joining an already glutted field of hopefuls, Sen. Barack Hussein Obama (D-Ill.) announced his candidacy for the 2008 Democratic nomination yesterday."The headline: Sticks, Stones and Mr. Obama/Misleading aspersions about the senator's background only make the perpetrators look bad.
Insight magazine managed to further degrade the public discourse with a scurrilous "report" alleging that Mr. Obama, as a child in Indonesia, attended a radical Islamic madrassa. In fact, Mr. Obama attended a public school in Jakarta that was predominantly Muslim—no surprise given that Indonesia is a predominantly Muslim country. Insight, whose piece was eagerly touted by Fox News Network, might have learned this if it had bothered to check its story...
Mainly, though, this editorial made us picture the Ghost of False Aspersions Past. As we noted last week, this is the type of editorial which was never written during the press corps astonishing war against Candidate Gore during Campaign 2000. The editors refused to write such a piece during Campaign 2000—which explains why George W. Bush is now president, and why the U.S. is stuck in Iraq. Heres the editorial the editors failed to type at this stage eight years ago. We work closely from Sundays text, which arrived about eight years too late:
WHAT THE WASHINGTON POST SHOULD HAVE WRITTEN (4/99):Sundays editorial was so obvious that it virtually typed itself. That said, the editors still deserve our thanks for having written it. But the same editorial should have been written when it was Gore whom the press corps was sliming. The Posts editors have done the right thing—but theyve done it eight years too late. They should crawl on their hands and knees to beg forgiveness for their past silence. And who knows? Maybe E. J. Dionne could even get involved in fighting the conduct which has transformed our politics—and changed our nations history. Maybe Dionne will even challenge the slimers—and stand up for American values.
STICKS, STONES AND MR. GORE
Misleading aspersions about the vice president's background only make the perpetrators look bad.
IT'S BECOME a fad among some journalists to pretend that Vice President Gore has been lying—or is even delusional—about his personal family background. This would be merely juvenile if it weren't so contemptible. Sadly, our own Michael Kelly has been one of the early adopters of this sleazy tactic. Kelly wrote an op-ed column, Farmer Al, which seemed to suggest that Gore was lying in statements he recently made in Iowa—statements in which Gore accurately described the part of his early years which was spent on his familys farm.
In fact, Mr. Gore spent about a third of each year on the family farm as a youth—no surprise, given his parents modest Tennessee backgrounds. Kelly, whose misleading column has been eagerly touted, might have learned this if hed bothered to check past the Posts past reporting about the vice presidents personal history. Or Kelly might have checked his own past work; in 1987, he wrote a detailed profile of Gore for the Baltimore Sun. In it, he described all the youthful activities he now seems to suggest that Gore has been lying about.
When the attacks on Gore were debunked by Bob Zelnicks new biography—it describes Gores youthful life on the farm in detail—Mr. Gores slimers didn't even have the decency to slink away. They continue to pretend that Gore has been lying about that part of his early life, and they add silly, embellished complaints about a fleeting remark Gore once made about the film Love Story. Those complaints against Gore have been debunked too, by Love Story author Eric Siegal and by Times Karen Tumulty. But the attacks continue. Mr. Gore's slimers seem to think such name-calling can score points with the American people.
Mr. Gore has never tried to distort his past or his familys history. Those who take pains to pretend that he has are trying, none too subtly, to stir up scary images of Bill Clintons misstatements concerning Monica Lewinsky. But these matters are completely unrelated. The critics who make these claims about Gore embarrass only themselves.