In his first segment yesterday Chris Matthews covered a debate for Governor in California and one for the Senate in Connecticut. None of the four candidates appear to be any real prize, but Matthews spent the entire time discussing the most trivial issues he could find in the debates.
In the California debate he and his “guests” spent seven minutes discussing whether or not Jerry Brown had apologized quickly enough and in proper form for his staffer’s suggestion that they call Meg Whitman a “whore.” They also debated whether the staffer was trying to imply that she had been selling her body for sex, or whether the term was used in a more gender neutral political sense.
Meg made a snide “I think women know what’s going on, here” remark in the debate in an attempt to imply the former, of course, but I don’t think the audience was buying it.
Matthews’ approach to the Connecticut Senate race is really odd. He supposedly considers himself a liberal and wants to see Democrats maintain control of Congress, and he regards the Republican candidate Linda McMahon as something of a horror, and yet he seems determined to defeat the Democratic candidate Richard Blumenthal.
Blumenthal, who has a quite distinguished career as Attorney General and is a well respected public servant, served in the Marine Corps during the Vietnam era and has made the mistake in the past of saying that he “served in Vietnam” rather than “during” that war. When that was publicized during the campaign he apologized for having misspoken, said that he did not intend to have claimed combat service, and was supported by a considerable number of Vietnam combat veterans.
That was not good enough for Chris Matthews, who has never served in uniform a day in his life. He continues to harp endlessly upon and exaggerate this man’s error, claim that he has never acknowledged or apologized for it, which in fact he has, and demand that he do so. It’s just insane that he is so outraged in the first place, that he is so unwilling to accept the apology in the second, and that he is willing to ride this fetish to the political destruction and defeat of a candidate of the party he supposedly supports.
I like Chris Matthews, he is rather charming and I enjoy the enthusiasm he brings to the commentary. He can be, however, a bit annoying when he fastens on one of his narrow fetishes and rides it to death, unwilling to listen to reason and unwilling to let it go.