'They're Blaming Chris Matthews'

See Bonus Coverage at foot: "Clinton campaign spent 24 hours slicing and dicing each other."

Could the great irony be that the strong woman won because . . . people felt sorry for her? That's not just some right-wing media critic talking. It's a view emerging from left-wing circles. Apparently the libs are angry that the MSM was too biased towards Obama, so much so that it drove people to Hillary out of spite or sympathy.

Take the comments of Air America host Rachel Maddow during last night's MSNBC election coverage, in a remarkable exchange with Pat Buchanan and Chris Matthews. Who has been singled out for blame by the lefty blogosphere? None other than Matthews himself, who regularly waxed euphoric about Obama, going so far as to claim a week ago that an Obama victory in Iowa would be the greatest story of the century.

View video here.

PAT BUCHANAN: The press was dead wrong. We had virtually canonized Obama and said he'd been born in Bethlehem. And now you've got a race where Hillary Clinton is running --

CHRIS MATTHEWS: I don't think you were on the list of apostles!

BUCHANAN: Three or four points ahead of this fellow [NB: the exchange occurred at about 10:15 PM ET last night before final results were in]. Something has happened, there's a hidden vote here somewhere, or my guess is this: the New Hampshire voters said look, the press has been telling us Obama's the Second Coming. We don't think so. The press has been telling us she's gone, and the women came out and said no she's not. What New Hampshire did was stand up and body slam [at this point, 39 seconds into the video clip, you'll note that rarest of moments: Maddow nodding her head in agreement with Buchanan] the national establishment, the press corps, the pollsters, the whole bunch that came in here, as well as Barack Obama's folks who must be in a state of shock tonight.

RACHEL MADDOW: Pat, I will tell you that on the influential -- influential perhaps on the left -- website Talking Points Memo today, you want to know who they're blaming for women voters breaking for Hillary Clinton over Barack Obama? Who they're blaming for this late showing and a big vote for Hillary Clinton? They're blaming Chris Matthews. People are citing specifically Chris, not only for his own views but as a symbol of what the mainstream media has done to Hillary Clinton.

MATTHEWS: Which website is this?

MADDOW: This is Talking Points Memo dot com. And you're being cited, anecdotally, not statistically ---

MATTHEWS: My influence in American politics looms over the people! I'm overwhelmed myself.

MADDOW: People feel that the media's piling on Hillary Clinton; they're coming to her defense with their votes.

KEITH OLBERMANN [cutting to Edwards statement]: Rachel, we're going to have to interrupt you, and Pat we're going to have to interrupt you, and Chris, I'm even going to have to interrupt you, even though you decide how American politics plays out.

Here are a couple reader postings from Talking Points exemplifying the phenomenon Maddow mentioned [emphasis added]:

I almost wonder if more Dems didn't vote for Hillary to counter the BS media narrative about rejecting the Clintons once and for all. I say this as someone who has given 1500 bucks to Obama, gone to several of his events out here in CA, met him, and plan to vote for him. Part of me, however, was so pissed about this media narrative about Hillary and the Clintons in general that I had in the back of my mind that I would consider voting for her just to piss the media off. That's not going to happen now as it appears we have a real race, but still . . . do you see what I am saying? I mean this whole weekend we see people like Andrea Mitchell and Chris Matthews salivating over how the Democrats "rejected the Clintons" and want to puke. I am for Obama not because I am against Clinton (either one), but because I am for Obama. That's it. I think he is the best of the big 3 dem candidates. Would I be happy to vote for Hillary or Edwards in the general? Hell yeah. Did I think Bill Clinton was a great President? Yes. And I think Hillary would probably be pretty good too. This whole media narrative sickened me.

I have always had somewhat lukewarm feelings about Hillary Clinton. It took me years to forgive her for her "baking cookies" comment. At the time I had just given birth to my first child and decided to leave my job as an attorney to stay home and take care of my baby. I have been on the fence throughout this campaign, liking John Edwards more than the others. The media coverage of Sen. Clinton has caused my blood to boil. I can not bear to witness blatant misogyny. Gloria Steinheim's article in the NYT this morning was so on the mark. If I lived in New Hampshire, I would have voted for Sen. Clinton today. I would not allow the talking heads to tell me who to vote for or declare this race over. And I certainly was not going to participate in the sexist bs that has been spewing out the mouths of the likes of Chris Matthews.

H/t FReeper SE Mom

Update | 1-09 9:42 AM: If Obama's problem is indeed excessive MSM sycophancy, he better get a message to the Morning Joe crew to tone it down. They were waxing ectastic over Obama's concession speech of last night, David Shuster mentioning, for example, how it "sent chills down your spine." Mika Brzezinski rejected what has been written "on the blogs and stuff" that the MSM is not being objective. "You can't help being caught up in it . . . These speeches are great."

Bonus Coverage -- "Clinton Campaign Spent Last 24 Hours Slicing and Dicing Each Other on Background"

NBC News Political Director Chuck Todd, on today's Morning Joe, pulled back the curtain on the Clinton campaign, and it wasn't pretty.

CHUCK TODD: The thing that I wonder this morning is how much trust is left inside the Clinton campaign? They spent about 24 hours slicing and dicing each other on background to reporters all over New Hampshire and Washington. Then all of a sudden they put the knives away. "Oh look, we won!" Everybody's happy. And yet you just wonder are the eyes darting left and right and looking behind them? So, the Clintons have a challenge on their hands to trust each other again. It will be interesting to see how the weekend goes.

 

Mark Finkelstein
Mark Finkelstein is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.