For the second time in two weeks, a devout liberal exposed just how little Bill Maher actually knows about politics.
When the "Real Time" host arrogantly told his guests that people voted for Republicans this past Tuesday because President Obama "didn't back the public option" during the healthcare reform debate, Time's Fareed Zakaria marvelously informed the comedian just how wrong he was (video follows with transcript and commentary):
BILL MAHER, HOST: I thought it was interesting the Blue Dog Democrats who, that’s a nice term, Blue Dog. What it really means is Democrats who act and vote more like Republicans. Very conservative Democrats. They lost on Tuesday. Those people who said, “You know what, I’m not with Obama. I disavow him even though he’s my president in my Party.” They lost. What does that tell you? You know, it tells me that this election was lost when Obama didn’t back the public option. To me, that was the one key thing that said to the people, “You know what? This is no different than Al Gore Democrats, the old Al Gore playbook. Let’s run from our achievements, and let’s not stand for what we believe in."
FAREED ZAKARIA, TIME AND CNN: I think it stretches imagination though Bill to think that fundamentally, if you look at this election and what happened, basically as you, as you mock them, Independents broke, broke for the Republicans. It’s difficult to imagine an Independent saying, “I’m going to vote for extremely right-wing Republicans because Obama wasn’t left-wing enough.” Right? You see what I’m saying? They’re saying, instead of saying, “I’m going to vote for Obama who was left of center, I’m going to go to the extreme right of the political spectrum.” I think it’s more plausible to say that they perceived rightly or wrongly that he had moved too far left. My view, the going doing healthcare itself gave people a signal he was concerned about the kind of things Bill O’Reilly was saying: social justice. Because look, fundamentally, 85 percent of the country has healthcare and worries about cost. Fifteen percent doesn’t and worries about access. What he did was he dealt with the issue of the fifteen percent before he dealt with the issue of the 85 percent.
MAHER: Among that 85 percent that has it, a lot worry that they will lose it.
ZAKARIA: They may.
MAHER: If you lose your job you lose it.
ZAKARIA: They may.
MAHER: Or if the insurance company chooses to screw you because of a spelling error, you lose it. In fact, the public option, the public option in January of ’09 polled at 73 percent approval, wanted the public option. A year later, 53 percent because the Republicans…
ZAKARIA: The healthcare plan was generally speaking not very popular from the get go.
MAHER: That’s not true. That’s still not true.
ZAKARIA: It had between 40, 48 percent support. It never really crossed 50.
MAHER: That’s not, I don’t believe that’s true. I think…
CONGRESSMAN DARRELL ISSA, (R-CALIFORNIA): Those darned polls, they just lie.
ZAKARIA: You think if he had done a single payer system, all these guys who voted for right-wing Republicans would say, “Hallelujah! This is what we wanted. Now we don’t like Christine O’Donnell?” It just doesn’t make any sense!
DANA GOULD, COMEDIAN: No. He campaigned on the healthcare program. He campaigned on healthcare.
ZAKARIA: But why would they vote for right-wing Republicans? They would vote for people who were more left-wing than Obama not people who are right-wing. They would have to be truly confused.
Almost as confused as Maher.
Of course, this wasn't the first time this season that Maher has been made a fool of by a liberal guest. On October 23, actor George Clooney exposed the HBOer's ignorant hatred for conservatives.
Two weeks before that, On October 9, Maher found himself on the wrong side of a religious discussion wherein the liberal Andrew Ross Sorkin of the New York Times and the equally liberal Joshua Green of the Atlantic disagreed with him. In the end, Maher said "Oh f--k you all" and moved to another segment.
On the conservative side of things, Andrew Breitbart just two weeks before that exposed Maher for being a phony Libertarian.
Add it all up, and in the past six weeks, Maher's been taken down a peg by five different guests.
If this keeps up, he might have to make this a solo act.