The McLaughlin Group isn’t the hot buzz-machine show it used to be in the 1980s, but this weekend’s show brought a classic Eleanor Clift explosion. When Pat Buchanan mocked Barack Obama’s abilities at political street brawling, and suggested he needed surrogates like the ones Nixon had – John Connally, Bob Dole, Spiro Agnew – Clift scowled and said "What a Hall of Evil!" Bob Dole’s a super villain?
BUCHANAN: Here’s what he needs, John. What Obama needs more than anything else is, cause he's not good at it [fighting back]. He needs surrogates. Remember Nixon? We had John Connally, Bob Dole, and Spiro Agnew doing the cutting –
CLIFT: Oh God! What a, what a Hall of Evil! [Buchanan laughs heartily, even though she’s dead serious.] I don’t think he needs a Bob Dole or Spiro Agnew.
BUCHANAN, talking over her: Forty-nine states, Eleanor, forty-nine states!
CLIFT: And impeachment follows!
This is the latest proof of John Harwood's Media Maxim. In a discussion of Karl Rove and liberal bias in 2005, Harwood declared:"I believe it is true that a significant chunk of the press believes that Democrats are incompetent but good-hearted, and Republicans are very efficient but evil."