John Heilemann: Republican Presidential Field Weakest Anybody Has Seen In Our Lifetime
New York Magazine's John Heilemann on Friday said the Republican presidential field is the weakest anybody has seen in our lifetime.
This absurd statement was made on the syndicated "Chris Matthews Show" in a segment about which GOPers will be throwing their name into the ring in the coming months before next year's elections (video follows with transcript and commentary):
JOHN HEILEMANN, NEW YORK MAGAZINE: Here are some facts. One fact is that the Republican field is the weakest field that anybody has seen - and Republicans all agree on that - that anybody has seen that in our lifetime.
There are so many ways to look at this absurd comment they're almost too many to count.
Let's start with how this field doesn't currently differ all that much from the 2008 version with the obvious exemption of John McCain's absence, and he lost to Barack Obama in the biggest landslide a Republican presidential nominee has suffered since Jimmy Carter beat Gerald Ford.
As such, you can't in all honesty say this field is any worse than the one just three years ago.
Prior to that, 1996, when the primary candidates were Bob Dole, Phil Gramm, Arlen Specter, and Pat Buchanan, was far worse than what's available to Republican voters now.
But in reality, that's all irrelevant, for the name of the game for liberal media members like Heilemann is to do everything possible to keep his readers and Matthews' viewers from thinking anyone has a prayer of beating Obama in 2012.
The press are once again trying to orchestrate a self-fulfilling prophecy: by continually calling Obama a shoo in, they hope the public will agree with them thereby making it more likely to come true.
The second-coming of Ronald Reagan could emerge in the next few months, and these folks would find flaws in him or her like a gemologist inspecting a diamond found in a Cracker Jacks box.
With this in mind, readers and viewers need to remind themselves to not take any criticism of a potential Republican presidential candidate by people like Heilemann at all seriously.
It's like asking a newly-divorced individual to rate his or her former spouse.
In the words of President George H.W. Bush, it wouldn't be prudent.