Hillary Down to the 'Tonya Harding Option'

Time to lace up the skates and cut some rhetorical figure-eights. GMA has quoted a Dem official as saying that in her desperate quest for the nomination, Hillary Clinton is down to "the Tonya Harding option." ABC senior political correspondent Jake Tapper cited the skating simile in his Good Morning America segment this morning.

JAKE TAPPER: It is mathematically possible, improbable yes, but possible for Senator Hillary Clinton to win the Democratic nomination. What concerns Democratic officials in Washington is what Clinton will have to do to Senator Barack Obama in order for that to happen. One Democratic official told ABC News it is “the Tonya Harding option.”

Cut to clip of Harding, skating at the 1994 Olympics, as Tapper continued.

View video here.

TAPPER: The Tonya Harding option, the idea being that Clinton’s only path to the gold medal is to destroy her competitor.

Cut to ABC News political contributor Matthew Dowd: "I don’t think she has no chance, but the only way for her victory is to damage Barack Obama so much, that people feel like he is not electable. "

TAPPER: After staying away from the controversy surrounding Obama’s former pastor Jeremiah Wright for almost two weeks, Clinton went for the jugular, for the first time personally injecting him into the race.

Cut to clip of Hillary saying: “He would not have been my pastor. You know, you don’t choose your family, but you choose what church you want to attend.”

After reviewing some more incidents from the campaign trail, including a testy exchange between Hillary and reporters over her claim that her misstatement on the sniper fire in Bosnia was the first time she misspoke in 12 years, Tapper closed on a cautionary note.

TAPPER: A good lesson for both Democrats, regardless of which one is Nancy Kerrigan and which one is Tonya Harding: it was a third skater that went on to win that gold medal, and I suppose to extend this metaphor, Oksana Baiul [shown here] would be John McCain, Chris.

CHRIS CUOMO: Always like a good Oksana Baiul reference, thank you very much Jake Tapper.

OK, have at it. But you’re going to have to do better than suggest that if Hillary loses, she can always stage a celebrity boxing match with Lindsay Lohan.

Mark Finkelstein
Mark Finkelstein is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.