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Moderates Not Welcome Here

Reported by Nancy - November 18, 2004 -

On Special Report last night (11/17), the panel of invited guests outdid themselves in bashing some of Fox's favorite targets, but one -- Michael Barone -- topped them all.

Hume's guests were Ceci Connolly (Washington Post), Jeff Birnbaum (also WaPo) & Michael Barone (US News & World Report) [comment: what a pleasure to see people other than Fred Barnes & Mort Kondracke].

During a bash-Arlen-Specter segment (which also included swipes at some of Fox's favorite legal topics: activist judges, trial lawyers, etc), Barone finally came clean: now "moderate" GOPs in the Senate won't be able to help Dems block what the Bush administration wants. Barone named names, too: John McCain (R-AZ), Lincoln Chafee (R-RI), Olympia Snowe (R-ME) & Susan Collins (R-ME) [comment: this is the radical right-wing's equivalent of "fair warning": get in line, or else].

A subsequent segment was devoted to defending the House GOPs' decision to change their own rule so Tom DeLay can keep his "leadership" post if he is indicted by a Texas grand jury on state political corruption charges. Three of DeLay's political associates already have been indicted by that grand jury. Barone went off on a tear about the local prosecutor, calling him a "rotten" prosecutor with a history of filing false charges that had to be dropped [comment: pre-emptive strike, in case charges actually are filed] & claiming that the potential charges against DeLay are politically motivated. When Connolly tried to point out how self-serving & shameless the GOPs were, Hume & Barone jumped all over her. She said that DeLay had previously been "censured" by the ethics committee, Hume interrupted immediately, saying "whoa, whoa, whoa" repeatedly & telling Barone to go ahead. Barone said DeLay hasn't been "censured", he'd been "admonished" [comment: like there's nothing wrong with being "admonished" by the ethics commitee for unethical behavior] & Connolly agreed that she hadn't used the precise term.

Later I saw a clip of Delay's pal, Rep Henry Bonilla (R-TX) on another channel, & he took the same tack as Barone, calling the prosecutor a "partisan crackpot district attorney" who wants to "make a name for himself" [comment: nice to see that Bonilla & Barone both got their RNC memos today]. Interesting, too, that Hume & his panel chose NOT to discuss how the GOP decision was taken -- by voice vote after a closed session, several hours long. That should have been fertile ground for the speculation & gossip that's the usual fare of Hume's panels [comment: & it would have been, if Dems did something equivalent].

The clip that Hume chose to end the hour was from Jay Leno's show the night before, bashing Bill Clinton. Hume smirked, as usual.