Andrew Malcolm of The Los Angeles Times Top of the Ticket blog suggested that Bill Maher on HBO "says what many people, most of them supporters of Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois, who refused to disown Wright in his recent race speech, are saying to themselves about the impact of the pastor's reappearance and resulting news coverage," but have "many" been this vivid?
I saw Reverend Wright. This is the guy that Obama did not throw under the bus. He said ‘you know what, I can no more repudiate him than I can repudiate my family.’ And I saw this guy the other night, who I also defended, Reverend Wright, saying ‘you know what, Obama was just being a politician.’ You know what, Reverend Wright? You’re a dick. [Laughter] What a dick. At the very moment Obama doesn’t need this to come back into the race. Obama did not disown him. That this guy brings up the one thing Obama cannot afford to have brought up, that he’s just another politician. This is his whole campaign, that I’m a different kind of politician.
That probably sounds like the view of "many people" in the news rooms of the national media. I’d say the real shock is that Bill Maher ever defended a Reverend, someone Maher would 99 times out of 100 scorn as a peddler of toxic fairy tales.
Arianna Huffington stayed stubbornly on Maher's left: "However bad Reverend Wright is or is not, what does it have to do ultimately with whether Barack Obama would be a good president or not?" She called it "another major distraction."
Apparently, Wright hasn't said anything that offends her yet. He's made fun of the way the Kennedys speak English, but he has yet to extend his comedy stylings to an Arianna impression.