Playing The Wrong Clip

by dday

I know the big story today is that a sleep-deprived Hillary Clinton, under the kind of pressure that really only people who have run for President understand, actually showed some emotion on the campaign trail. This set off an avalanche of sniggering from the chattering class, to the extent that Bush might have to open up the Strategic Sniggering Reserves before we run into a real shortage.

(By the way, John Edwards' response was classless, and I'm a John Edwards supporter.)

But in a sane world, the real exchange that you'd be seeing all over the cable nets is this one where Hillary outs Chris Matthews as little more than a stalker.

During a question-and-answer session with reporters after the speech, Matthews asked Clinton how her plan to get out of Iraq is different from Obama's. She started describing her plan. He interrupted to insist she distinguish it from her rival's. Here's how it went from there:

"Well, you guys can figure out the difference," she said.

"No," Matthews interrupted, "you tell us the difference."

"I'm not on your show," she retorted. "I'm trying to answer the question."

"Please come on the show," Matthews implored.

"I never understood why you're obsessed with me," she replied. "Honestly, I've never understood it."

After the session was over, Clinton headed straight for Matthews and greeted him with a big, friendly smile, patted his cheek reassuringly and gave him a hug. She did not, so far could be heard, book a date on the show.

To his credit, Tweety actually did show the clip on his show today. After Hillary outed him, the plaintive wail of "I'm not obsessed" sounded to me like a guy who's sewn his own Luke Skywalker in Bespin gear outfit saying he wasn't obsessed with Star Wars. He looked like he was just kicked in the stomach.

Whatever happens to her campaign, I have to thank Hillary for this moment, which I'll probably embed in about 200,000 blog posts over the next 20 years.

...Lest anyone think I'm somehow shilling for Hillary, I think her claiming Obama is somehow not trustworthy on choice despite a 100% choice record - and after staffers over the weekend called Obama too liberal; her hitting Obama for voting for bills that she also voted for; and her borrowing a page from the Giuliani playbook with some scare-mongering on terrorism, represent a campaign that is kind of flailing about. But her willingness to call out Chris Matthews this way is something I hope to see in whoever emerges as our candidate, given the tremendous amount of pushback they're likely to get if they make any effort to enact a progressive agenda.