CNN’s Candy Crowley, the worst debate moderator of 2012, disappointed liberals on Tuesday night by failing to see the Virginia election returns as proof that the Tea Party is fading away.
“This is clearly not some huge rejection of the Tea Party,” Crowley told Anderson Cooper shortly after 10 pm. (Transcript and video below.)
COOPER: What do you make of the results in Virginia? How significant?
CROWLEY: Well, how significant, ask me that in 11 months. I think you can overinterpret what happened. But this is clearly not some huge rejection of the tea party. Cucinnelli did a lot better. He was outgunned 10 to 1 in the last few days, and the last couple of weeks in advertising. McAuliffe was out early and just pounded Cucinnelli with the anti-woman theme.
COOPER: Right. A lot of social issues.
CROWLEY: A lot of social issues. And positioned himself as the centrist. And if there's one thing you can say that both Chris Christie and Terry McAuliffe had in common in their campaigns it was selling themselves as “I’m the guy that can work with the other party and get things done for you.”
The "center" is not merely a place where the deal-makers live. McAuliffe's campaign was heavily supported by extremists who favor abortion in every instance, so as much as he might have "positioned himself" as a centrist, liberal reporters ought to be able to recognize that's not where he stood.