Matthews: 'Conservative Gut But Liberal Beliefs Because I've Thought Things Through'

Any man who is under 30 and is not a liberal has no heart; and any man who is over 30 and not a conservative has no brains. - Winston Churchill

I guess we know what old Winston would think of Chris Matthews, then. Appearing on Morning Joe today, the Hardball host turned the Churchillian maxim upside down, claiming his gut leans right but his head pulls him left.

Chris was conversing with MJ panelist Mika Brzezinski. After calling her "a cutie pie and "very smart," he continued.

View video here.

CHRIS MATTHEWS: I love the way you go at Joe [Scarborough, the show's host] because I'm trying to figure out the politics of this thing in the morning.

MIKA BRZEZINKSI: It's actually not what anyone would think.

MATTHEWS: Nobody is what we think they are.

BRZEZINKSI: Exactly.

MATTHEWS: Everybody thinks they've got you figured --

BRZEZINKSI: Everbody thinks "oh, liberal! Oh, Republican!" and actually, I've got --

MATTHEWS: I'm sort of a conservative; I have a conservative gut, and yet I have this liberal belief because I've thought things through, like marriage and things like that, abortion rights. I think 'em through and I come to these liberal conclusions on a lot of things.

In fairness, I have heard Matthews express the odd conservative sentiment, as when he praises the way Rudy Giuliani got tough on crime in NYC or blasts Hillary's big-government giveaways. But when Mika said "actually, I've got" and seemed on the verge -- before Chris cut her off -- of claiming to harbor some conservative opinions herself . . . Let's just say that, regardless the topic, Mika reliably voices the conventional liberal line.

Mark Finkelstein
Mark Finkelstein is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.