James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem
by Matt Stoller, Thu Mar 29, 2007 at 12:03:20 PM EDT
Cable news is a rather unique beast. There are so many ways it's a racket that it would take a book to list them all. Here's a simple and obvious little conflict of interest, from yesterday's Situation Roomon CNN.
CARVILLE: But what's happening...
BLITZER: ... "USA Today" poll.
CARVILLE: ... to Senator Obama is, he has had a couple of less- than-impressive performances at a health care forum out in Las Vegas and things like that.
CARVILLE: But he's not -- he's a very talented guy. And he's very effective.
And -- and, you know, he started out pretty good. I mean, it's pretty remarkable he is where he is, in terms of somebody...
STEELE: Right. CARVILLE: ... new, and -- and burst on the scene like that.
But I think that what might be a little troubling, if I was running Obama's campaign, is, is that he seems to get up -- need to get up to speed on a couple of these issues.
James Carville is identified as a CNN Political Analyst, and here he is spreading conventional wisdom about Obama that is worthy of the Politico. That's fine, since that seems to be what political analysts on the TeeVee do. Carville blathers about how Obama is thin on the issues, isn't performing well as of late, etc.
What CNN doesn't mention is that Carville is also sending out fundraising solicitations for Hillary Clinton's campaign for President and is an advisor for her campaign.
This is crazy. It's just crazy. When CNN commentator Bay Buchanan took over the Tancredo campaign, she resigned from the network. This isn't exactly the same situation, but the lines are thin. Carville isn't getting money from Clinton, but there are other ways of compensation in politics and everyone knows that.
Yet there Carville is, on CNN, as a political analyst, and also on message for the Clinton campaign. This is just embarrassing for everyone involved. Stop it already.