Hardball or T-Ball? C'mon Chris: Stop Being a Softy
The show bills itself as 'Hardball.' But in surrounding himself with regulars who are either certified liberals or renegade Republicans, doesn't Chris Matthews prove himself to be a softy, unwilling or unable to take the high heat from true-blue Republican flamethrowers?
Let me say something that might surprise some NewsBusters readers and dismay others. I like Matthews. Not that conservatives are the arbiters of patriotism, but I do consider Chris someone who loves his country and, as misguided as he may be on various policy issues - has its best interests at heart. He's no Keith Olbermann.
That said, although he professes not to be a partisan and will speak to Democrats about "your" - not "our" - party, there can be little doubt that his rooting interest hasn't changed much since the days he was a top aide to Tip.
Fair enough. But if this is really 'Hardball,' and not just a comfy echo chamber, why is it that Matthews' regular guests are essentially confined to liberals, mainstream moderate-left pundits, and Republicans notable for being renegades all-too-willing to criticize the GOP?
Take tonight's show.
- First, a report from Matthews' main reporting man, David Shuster, who reliably offers a Republican-unfriendly take.
- Next, the left-leaning NBC heavyweight, Andrea Mitchell.
- Followed by the Dem governor of New Mexico and former Clinton UN Ambassador Bill Richardson.
- Succeeded by MSM pundit Howard Fineman.
- After a report from another NBC reporter, Mike Viqueira, Matthews' two final guests were the affable but hardly conservative Eugene Robinson of the Washington Post, and the only person who is colorably a Republican: Pat Buchanan. Pat is a Hardball regular, and with good reason. He gives Chris cover - 'see, I do too have on conservatives!' But Buchanan is Chris' kind of Republican- one who quit the GOP and is often a bitter critic of Republicans. Witness tonight's show, in which Pat accused Republicans of a "cover-up" of the Foley matter, and warned Denny Hastert not to lie to the FBI. With "Republicans" like Pat, who needs Bob Shrum?
So, c'mon Chris. Stop playing softball, and find yourself a real Republican regular!