Maybe they should change the name of the show to Mourning Joe. On The Daily Show last night, Jon Stewart played a few clips of TV pundits dissing Barack Obama's chances vs. Hillary Clinton a year or so ago. One of them was Joe Scarborough, pooh-poohing Obama's chances. My search of the MSNBC site from that period uncovers much more, from December 22, 2006.
Say it ain't so, Joe! Here is one highlight.
SCARBOROUGH: Even before the final votes were tallied in the 2006 elections, politicians started lining up for the 2008 presidential sweepstakes. Without further ado, let me kill Hamlet in the first act and tell you how your favorite candidate will fare over the next 12 months.
Forget the fact this guy's middle name is "Hussein." Forget the fact he has been in national politics for less than two years. Forget the fact that Hillary Clinton will raise more money than God in 2007. Forget all of that, the Washington press tells us, because Barack Obama is none other than the second coming of JFK.
Barack Hussein Obama is more Johnny Bravo than John Kennedy. The vest fits and the fans scream while DC's star-maker machinery shifts into overdrive.
Like Peter Brady's Bravo, Obama's shot at the top will be short lived. But since BHO is young enough, dynamic enough and (just) black enough to whip official Washington into a frenzy, expect this stupid story to stick around for a while. Soon enough though, this year's model will be shouting, "Please give a warm Chicago welcome to the next President of the United States, Hillary Clinton!"
Then he went on to his Hillary assessment.
Cheering for New York's junior senator excites Democratic activists about as much as rooting for General Electric. Regardless of their hand wringing, Hillary Inc. will grind up and spit out any Democratic challenger that gets in its way.
Ms. Clinton has completed six ruthlessly efficient years in the U.S. Senate and avoided even a whiff of scandal since Bubba moved to a separate zip code. But that doesn't mean the problematic ex-president won't be her campaign's chief asset. Time and again throughout the next few years, Bill Clinton will make the difference on fundraising, networking and strategy. And 2007 will show that any politico who dares to cross Team Clinton risks being crushed into dust.
Crushed into dust? Uh, not quite.
Greg Mitchell's new book is titled So Wrong for So Long: How the Press, the Pundits -- and the President -- Failed on Iraq. It's the first five-year history of the war and features a preface by Bruce Springsteen.