Rachel Maddow Breaks Out on MSNBC Iowa Caucus Special

In a few threads here at at Huff in the last couple months many people named Rachel Maddow as their first choice replacement for Tucker Carlson should MSNBC decide to class up its act.  In fact, Rachel was the name most-often suggested.  I made the point a couple times that one factor MSNBC would clearly be considering was finding someone that would strengthen their election coverage specials.  Rachel would fit that bill nicely, I said. (It's pretty obvious Tucker does not.)

What joy, then, to see Rachel seated at the 'grown-ups' table last night, right alongside Howard Fineman.  A quick search turns up a couple extensive threads about her appearance last night, especially the contrast she strikes with Matthews - check out Crooks & Liars and DemocraticUnderground.com (I'd insert the links if I knew how - I'm a newbie to the diaries.)

As for the on-air discussion itself, I'll just say there was a wholly remarkable moment towards the end, when Chris was on a tear about partisan egos being the root of all our problems - barked at Fineman, who was given no opportunity to do anything but smile.  A truly embarrassing moment.  When Chris finally ran out of breath, though, Rachel smartly and gracefully trimmed his sails, and Keith then (happily, I'm sure) took us out to a commercial.  (Clip online at http://www.maddowfans.com/blog/?p=171 )

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MSNBC Needs Email, Matthews Needs Smackdown

If you have watched Hardball over the last few years, and especially over the last few months, it is clear that Chris Matthews isn't a Clinton fan.  That isn't a big deal in my mind.  You can have an opinion but still play it straight.  Do you believe that Olberman doesn' have an opinion on the Democratic field?  I am sure he does but I don't know what it is.

But tonight Matthews went over the top both on Hardball and appearing on Tucker.  He crossed a line.

He spoke into the camera, trashed Democrats, and tried to influence a vote as he was being beamed into living rooms - Iowa living rooms -  before a caucus.

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Ed Schulz's HRC Rant: "I'm done with the Clintons!"

I stopped listening to Ed Schulz about 2 months ago. I felt his comments regarding HRC were very biased and his comments regarding JRE and BO extremely accommodating.  I sent several emails expressing my displeasure about the show. I vowed that I would never listen again. However, today I decided to listen. Today was one of the most disgusting rants that I've heard to date.  

Here is the transcript of Schultz talking to a Phoenix caller, Carl. Carl said he was an undecided voter and hadn't made a decision on whom to vote.  Except with the caller here.

Schulz:

You hit the nail on the head my friend when you said that I'm not real happy with Hillary Clinton for not coming on this program. You are not embarrassing me. You are exactly right. And if you will notice a couple of things, I do not put surrogates on this program. I want the candidates. Barack Obama was on yesterday and John Edwards will be on tomorrow. Chris Dodd has been on repeatedly, I bet John Edwards has been on this program 15 times this year. We've had Richardson on, Kucinich in studio and on repeatedly, who benefits?

Let me point out that HRC has been on Ed's show 3 times this year, most recently in September. If this sounds disingenuous, you haven't read anything yet.

Schulz goes on to say:

We all have our issues, and something is really strange here. Does Hillary Clinton think that I am going to nail her? Does she think that this is some kind of torpedo thing or something? Every time the Bush white house gets in trouble they don't run, they sprint with a stopwatch to fox news.

"Every time the Bush white house gets in trouble they don't run..."? I've heard many say that Ed is a Right-wing plant. I've never thought that, but this comment is telling.

This is part of the fight of the culture of media access. And I am down on Biden and I am down on Hillary Clinton and I am not going to hide it. They are not helping Hartman out, they are not helping Rhodes out, they are not helping Stephanie Miller. I called Woody the other day and I asked `woody when was the last time that Hillary Clinton was on Bill Press show' `oh about 2 years ago.' That tells me that number one you don't give a dam, or you are afraid to talk to the base or you are afraid of the questions. You know what Hillary if you are afraid of the questions, if you are afraid of it Biden, I don't want you to be president of the United States.

Now Hillary has been called many things, but "afraid" isn't one of them.  

Schulz:

I carried more water for John Kerry than anybody on the radio in this country, day after day after day. I wanted Kerry to be the president of the United States. The listeners of this show wanted Kerry to be the president of the United States. Here I am fighting this battle. I'll give any of these candidates; don't give me your surrogates.

I listened to Ed many times during the 2004 Presidential cycle. I clearly remember Ed bad mouthing Kerry.

Carl:

Ok then why do you keep all these people that call your show Ed keep saying the same thing, it's not against the law to take money from these people that you guys don't want her to take money from. None of the candidates anybody can take the money from those people. I don't care if it is special interests or whatever, but you guys keep whining about her taking money from...

Schulz:

We give them a microphone and they don't even freaking use it. I am done with the Clintons. I'm done with the cheap shots. I'm done with the innuendos. I'm done with the blaming it on the Des Moines Register. Hillary I do not want you to be the nominee. Biden I do not want you to be the nominee. I'm taking a stand here and I am being self serving. Just like there are Americans out there being self serving about health care. Just like there are Americans out there being self serving about tax cuts or faith and politics. I can't believe that Barack Obama can call me yesterday from his bus just on a whim after we asked about it maybe an hour beforehand `hey we'd like to get you on talking about what the former president said about your experience.' `yea we'll make it happen.' Boom.

Schulz:

Carl you're a plant, you are not a core democrat. You're a plant and you know it, yes you are. Since I took the floor I am going to give you the final comment in fairness but I believe that you are a Clinton plant but go ahead

Carl:

I absolutely am not a Clinton plant and absolutely am not a full fledged Hillary supporter. I still have not made up my mind who I am voting for Ed. That is not a fair statement. You go on for almost 25 minutes, granted it is your show.

Something is fishy here. The thing that is puzzling to me is that Ed has ranted frequently about HRC. I noticed that the same day of the rant, Chris Matthews asks him on his show to "discuss" HRC.  Ed has mentioned many times in the past that he wants his own show.  Is Ed willing to take down HRC in the process? I was a HUGE Ed Schulz, but now I have no respect for him. What's Ed's beef with the Clintons?  If someone knows the answer, please enlighten me.

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Chris Matthews wants Obama to be next Carter

Chris Matthew has been licking Obama's arse for a long time. He always likened Obama to Carter who he worked for in the 1970s. He refers to Hillary as "establishment" candidate, echos everything Obama says and criticizing Hillary supporters for allegedly echoing what Hillary says. This guy should transfer to Fox with his "balanced news fearless views"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GDK7aZ1KO PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mx3cteOWD Z8
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jrKy9oRkt Gw
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dSMrjWe69 bQ

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Movin' on Up

This is the weekly campaign blogger post for Joe Biden. No, it's not an hour late - here on the West Coast, it's still Friday.

Normally I write these posts from the single-digit-weather confines of Hanover, New Hampshire, but for the next few weeks I'll be with family in North Idaho. I figure I'm not missing much, since the candidates will largely bypass New Hampshire until Jan. 4, in order to focus on Iowa.

The latest news from Iowa is, of course, yesterday's Des Moines Register debate. I have to admit I missed the debate, as George Mitchell's press conference was on at the same time, but I've watched the reruns and agree with the pundits' consensus - despite a nasty cold, Joe Biden won yet another debate. (I would like to tip my cap to the moderator for finally giving the candidates roughly equal time.) Biden's shining moment came when asked about race relations - not only did he show off his sterling record with powerful emotion, but the other Senators all shouted, "Here, here!" and Obama in particular gave Biden a stirring endorsement on the issue. Here are two videos - one of all his debate answers, and one of just the race question, as that also includes Obama's response.

The Washington Post's Chris Cillizza listed Biden as the debate's top winner. "Biden was extraordinary today. Not only did he speak specifically and with authority on issues both foreign and domestic, he was able to tie all of his arguments together under the umbrella of taking action and setting priorities. Biden also beat back the toughest question of the day when moderator Carolyn Ashburn asked him whether his past verbal gaffes in relation to race reflected a level of discomfort with the issue... A complete performance by The Fix's Iowa darkhorse." The "dean of the Iowa press corps", the Des Moines Register's David Yepsen, agreed. "Biden's showing was the best of the day... How can you lose when everybody else on the stage is praising your record on civil rights, literally applauds you and the frontrunner offers testimony on your behalf? You can't. And unlike some of his past debate performances in which he seemed strident or comical, Biden was cool, commanding and presidential in this one."The Iowa blog iPol had similar thoughts.

This debate performance, the last one before the caucuses, comes at a great time for Biden, for at least three reasons. One is that Chris Matthews just put him at number three in the Hardball Power Rankings, meaning Tweety thinks Biden has a better chance at winning the nomination than John Edwards. "On the Democratic side I say, and this may surprise you, that Joe Biden is now the third best bet for the nomination. I'm hearing a lot of buzz about him from people who pay attention." Two is that today, Biden won the first endorsement from a Nevada union, specifically the 2200 members of the Plumbing, Pipefitting, and Refrigeration Workers UA Local 525. Three is that Biden just went back on the air in Iowa with a new TV ad, so all eyes are on him. It's a pretty good ad, too:

To support this ad and keep it on the air, the campaign is in the midst of its largest online fundraiser to date. Yes, I know it seems like I say that every other week about Biden's fundraisers, but that's because each time one ends, an even bigger one begins - there's a piece of your momentum! The current drive is pretty clever, asking supporters to "Adopt an Ad" at the following rates:

  • $10 pays for one ad during "The CBS Morning News" in Davenport

  • $35 pays for one ad during the Farm Report on KCRG-TV

  • $100 pays for one ad during the midday News in Cedar Rapids

  • $170 pays for one ad during "Oprah" in Sioux City

  • $375 pays for one ad during "The Today Show" in Des Moines

  • $2,250 pays for one ad during "Wheel of Fortune" in Davenport
  • Click here to donate and adopt your own ad, or e-mail me at texas_musician at hotmail.com to help with Iowa phone banking efforts.

    If you're thinking you'd like to post a comment saying you like Biden and think he'd make a great SecState, SecDef, or VP, I remind you of something Biden says: do you really want a President who isn't qualified to be Secretary of State? And I would add to that something Wesley Clark said in 2004 when asked about serving as Dean's VP: do we really need another 8 years of an inexperienced President with an experienced Veep? For further convincing that Biden is not only the best choice but also a viable one, be sure to read the recent articles "Biden Campaigning With Ease After Hardships"in the New York Times, "Candidate profiles: Joe Biden focusing on security issues" in the Quad City [Iowa] Times, and "For Biden, it's the résumé over the rallying cry"from the Boston Globe's front page.

    I'd also like to take a moment of personal privilege and let you all know that, after a three-month hiatus, I have used the steroid scandal as an excuse to restart my personal blog, The Wayward Episcopalian. Hope it's worth your while. And with that said, I'll leave you with yet another YouTube video, this one a rather moving ABC interview about the tragedy in Biden's life.

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