CNN's Schneider Labels Obama 'Liberal,' Toobin Labels 'Very Liberal'

On the bright side, during Friday's The Situation Room, one day after CNN's Bill Schneider ludicrously called Democratic voters in Iowa "pretty moderate," the political analyst labeled Barack Obama as "liberal," and CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin later called Obama "very liberal" as he recommended that the Hillary Clinton campaign should be attacking the Illinois Senator's voting record. Toobin further said that, as a state senator, Obama "had one of the most liberal voting records in a fairly liberal state." (Transcript follows)

On Thursday night, Schneider claimed that Democratic voters who showed up to vote in the caucuses were "pretty moderate" without commenting on the fact that two-thirds of Democratic voters selected such far-left candidates as Obama and John Edwards. But at 4:34 p.m. during Friday's The Situation Room, the CNN political analyst made a rare labeling of Obama as "liberal" in a story about the victories in Iowa by Obama and Republican Mike Huckabee in which he also labeled Huckabee as "conservative." Schneider: "Obama's a liberal Democrat. Huckabee is a conservative Republican. But their victories send a similar message: change."

Then at 6:34 p.m., during the roundtable discussion with CNN analysts Jeffrey Toobin, Jack Cafferty and Gloria Borger, after the discussion turned to Clinton's attempt to claim she had never been the front-runner in Iowa,  Toobin suggested that her new strategy should be to attack Obama's "very liberal" voting record in Illinois:

She has a very hard decision to make because there are negative attacks you can make on Barack Obama, which are good attacks. He's very liberal. ... He voted for gun control in the Illinois State Senate. He had one of the most liberal voting records in a fairly liberal state. He's changed his positions on some issues like health care. He used to be for single payer plan. Now he's not. He had different views on Iraq at different times. Is he a flip-flopper? Is he too far to the left? Those are arguments you are certainly going to hear if he's a general election nominee. Why isn't she making them now?

Borger then voiced agreement with charges by the Clinton campaign that the media "have given Barack Obama a bit of a free ride compared to the way we treat Hillary." Borger: "You know, the Clinton campaign people make a very good point. They say that we in the media have given Barack Obama a bit of a free ride ... compared to the way we treat Hillary."

Below is a transcript of the relevant portions of the Friday January 4 The Situation Room:

At 4:34 p.m.:

BILL SCHNEIDER: Obama's a liberal Democrat. Huckabee is a conservative Republican, but their victories send a similar message: change.

At 6:34 p.m.:

WOLF BLITZER: Here's how she reacted today. Listen to this.

HILLARY CLINTON: I was never a front-runner of any significance in Iowa. I knew Iowa was always going to be hard for me. It has a lot of difficulties that I knew were there.

BLITZER: What do you think about that line?

GLORIA BORGER: We were all just shaking our heads because, I mean, you know, she's, she was the front-runner. They worked so hard to establish this aura of invincibility around Hillary Clinton, and now they have to make this turn into making her the complete underdog. And it's just one more morphing of Hillary Clinton. Remember we had her as the tough candidate, then she became soft and gentle. It's one more morphing that's the problem.

JEFFREY TOOBIN: She has a very hard decision to make because there are negative attacks you can make on Barack Obama,
which are good attacks.

BORGER: She'll make them.

TOOBIN: He's very liberal. He voted for-

BLITZER: Is that his Achilles' Heel?

TOOBIN: Well, he voted for gun control in the Illinois State Senate. He had one of the most liberal voting records in a fairly liberal state. He's changed his positions on some issues like health care. He used to be for single payer plan. Now he's not. He had different views on Iraq at different times. Is he a flip-flopper? Is he too far to the left? Those are arguments you are certainly going to hear if he's a general election nominee. Why isn't she making them now?

BORGER: You know, the Clinton campaign people make a very good point. They say that we in the media have given Barack Obama a bit of a free ride, compared to the way we treat-

CAFFERTY, laughing: It's the media's fault.

BORGER, with crosstalk: It's our fault, wait, compared to the way we treat Hillary.

TOOBIN: Every candidate says that.

BORGER: On the other hand, on the other hand, I think that if this pivot in five days to a negative campaign, they call it a contrasting campaign. Forget that. It's going to be a negative campaign. It's going to be an attack campaign. To make that pivot in five days to try and get to Obama is very risky.