Friday, May 04, 2007

What kind of question was THAT?!

My wife (who is a libertarian type conservative, and Mormon to boot) and I watched last nights Republican debate together. I am quite a bit more interested in most things political than she is, but she is actually more interested in debates at this stage of the game than I am. Due to the incompatibility of our politics, we usually have to strain to keep the peace when we watch the news or some political show. But last night, towards the end of the debate, Chris Matthews lobbed an epic softball into the mix which caused me so much ire that I involuntarily erupted... Matthews asked:
"Would it be good for America to have Bill Clinton back living in the White House?"
What sort of question is that to ask a stage full of Republicans? Was Matthews actually expecting one of them to give a big thumbs up to President Clinton? Maybe Matthews thought that one of those candidates would take that opportunity to commit Republican political Hari Kari and tick off a list of reasons Bill Clinton is still so freaking popular with the American people. Wouldn't THAT have been great?!

Of course each Republican went down the line taking a swipe at Bill and/or Hillary Clinton. And a grand old time it was in Republican land... Romney's take (the first response) on the question was understandable disbelief. When he heard the question he said: "You have got to be kidding." Not because there isn't a chance that Hillary would be elected, (as Matthews implies Romney was saying with his rejoinder: "His wife's running, haven't you heard?") but because that is simply an absurd question to ask in a Republican debate.

For fairness, I suggest the moderator in the next Democrat debate ask if the Constitution should be re-amended to allow George Bush to run for a 3rd term? Then watch that softball fly far far away repeatedly.

My initial reaction upon hearing that question was "what kind of question is that?!" "You have got to be kidding" fits nicely with my initial response as well I must say. Then as each candidate took their turn I got madder. "What did Matthews THINK they were going to say?! What an awful question! Sheesh!" etc... etc... etc...

Oddly enough, despite my preconceived notions, my wife chirped in with HER disapproval of the question with a comment to the effect that Matthews was just wasting valuable time.

Just one final note. I'm certain that my wife would LOVE Romney to charge into the lead. She is predisposed to like him due to his religion and party. But she does not seem too impressed with him because of the political opportunism he is displaying by changing positions. His answer on embryonic stem cells last night was emblematic, and to cute by half in her opinion. That sort of answer may sound good to your typical Fox News viewer, who doesn't follow real news all that closely, but Romney basically tried to sound like he was saying yes while actually saying no. That type of thing troubles her. She may be rooting for him, but thus far she's not very impressed.

This reminds me of that time Tweety gleefully proclaimed that Dubya had a "sunny nobility" about him. I almost swallowed my tongue on that ditty.
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