James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

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.

(CROSSTALK)

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.

Tags: CNN, Hillary Clinton, James Carville (all tags)

Comments

22 Comments

Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

I know it's a tagential point, but I hadn't realized that Bay Buchanan was running Tancredo's campaign.

Best laugh I've had all day.

Tom-mentum's coming people! Batten down the hatches!

by BlueinColorado 2007-03-29 12:15PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

Yeah, I saw that segment yesterday.  It's outrageous, but I lost my respect for Carville a long time ago.  Fortunately, Obama had a solid interview with Wolf later in the show.

by rashomon 2007-03-29 12:20PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

I agree.  After CNN let the jokester speak, Senator Obama hit a grandslam game ending shot with Wolf "sometimes I love him, sometimes, I don't understand him" Blitzer.

I love his answer to the Iraq question, the executive power question and of cours "what would I do as President" question.  He did a great job.

by Lorraine 2007-03-29 12:33PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

You mean Bay Buchanan isn't just Pat in a dress?

by pjsauter 2007-03-29 12:22PM | 0 recs
Thanks Matt...

I appreciate this diary very much...

Some folks around here don't seem to understand how corrosive this kind of Politico-style, etc. mindless conventional wisdom perpetuation really is...

by Vermonter 2007-03-29 12:30PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

It's sad really, Carville's book "We're right, They're Wrong" anticipated blogosphere in many ways. Carville and Begala were the first big shots to recognzie Media Whores Online and Atrios.

It's a shame. A real shame.

by Alice Marshall 2007-03-29 12:33PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

The only way Clinton can win is by this sort of deception and buying of support.

by Bob Brigham 2007-03-29 01:06PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's

And going into a Feb 5 national primary as the media endorsed, all over but the voting, winner.

by Winston Smith 2007-03-29 01:25PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's

we have 10 months, it is time for the netroots to step up

by Bob Brigham 2007-03-29 01:41PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

I don't understand. Carville isn't being paid by Clinton. Why is that regarded as somehow trivial? If he is acting as official consultant to the campaign, could it be that he shares the Clinton's opinions on many issues? And could it also be the reason why he is on TV "on message" as you say, because of the nature of his political belief system?

If he's not on the payroll, I don't see what the fuss is about. Plus he's a bad political analyst. How does that help Hillary?

by mrblifil 2007-03-29 01:45PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

He's raising money for her while going on a news outlet as a supposedly neutral Democratic political analyst.  He should just disclose his bias.

by Matt Stoller 2007-03-29 01:51PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

Does anyone really NOT know who's side Carville is on??  Isn't it possible he could be RIGHT about Obama being a little thin on issues?

Fine, CNN should label him a Clinton supporter or whatever. And he should self disclose like Cramer on CNBC. Or they should have him resign. But he's on an OPINION segment. He offered an OPINION.

These are venial sins, not mortal ones.

And, oh, by the way, Obama IS a little thin on the issues, as anyone who was a State Senator 28 months ago would be.

by jouster 2007-03-29 02:01PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

The presumption, when a pundit is offering opinion on a news channel, is that the pundit does not have a professional relationship with one of the campaigns.

by RickD 2007-03-29 02:13PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

Well, don't worry, I'm sure Howard Kurtz will be all over this conflict of interest at CNN... oh, um, yeah, maybe not.

by Glenn in NYC 2007-03-29 02:22PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

"Carville isn't getting money from Clinton, but there are other ways of compensation in politics and everyone knows that."

Yeah, and everyone also knows that James Carville is associated with the Clintons. This is akin to being shocked and disgusted 10 years from now if Karl Rove is a political commentator and makes pro-Bush comments, if Jeb is running for president.

Wolf Blitzer, or anyone else, should absolutely get Carville on record as a Hillary supporter when he makes statements like that. Otherwise I don't see any problem.

For one thing, Carville's statement was hardly outlandish. Obama's performance in the Las Vegas health care forum was described much worse than "less than impressive" on MyDD, in a diary by Jerome with links to Las Vegas Gleaner and elsewhere.

by Gary Kilbride 2007-03-29 04:30PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

It's a real mistake to think that everyone who watches CNN has the same level of political knowledge as the junkies who read MyDD, dkos, or what have you.  They don't.  Many of them probably couldn't tell you who Nancy Pelosi or Harry Reid is.  It's like Howard Kurtz the other day when he said that of course everyone understood that the Kagans were all related, so there was no need to disclose that when Bob Kagan got all gooey about brother Fred's surge plan.  Not everyone is so up to speed (or sadly obsessed, depending upon your point of view.)

by Glenn in NYC 2007-03-29 04:43PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

was described much worse than "less than impressive" on MyDD, in a diary by Jerome

another case in point; shouldn't Jerome note that he supports Edwards

by pservelle 2007-03-29 08:50PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

I've emailed the Situation Room before to have him and Paul labeled as Clinton advisors.

by danIA 2007-03-29 04:52PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

Every time Carville and Begala are on CNN, they do nothing but use narratives that support Hillary. CNN is paying these guys for Hillary propoganda! Who the hell is doing that for Obama or Edwards on CNN. NOBODY!! No wonder Hillary is leading right now. I am about to put a parental block on CNN like I did Fox News. They should change their name to the "Clinton News Network".

by rbrianj 2007-03-29 11:08PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

I think it is time we all remind CNN of the ethics of not telling that Carvelle is working for Hillary and not an unbiased pundit.  Nor is Begalla.  this needs to be pushed.

by vwcat 2007-03-29 05:55PM | 0 recs
Re: James Carville's Blogger Ethics Problem

It's part of Carville's waning influence in the party.  This is the same as after the midterms, when he tried to incite an insurrection against Dean and replace him with Harold Ford, who is of course now at the DLC.

Hillary is the last chance for Carville, Begala, the DLC and the rest of the Clintonistas, and they are going to pull out everything they can against the other candidates.

by justinh 2007-03-30 03:23AM | 0 recs
by hp 2007-05-03 04:28AM | 0 recs

Diaries

Advertise Blogads