Thursday, January 26, 2006

The Doctor is In Your Face

If you haven't seen Howard Dean's duel with Katie Couric, the good people at Crooks and Liars have it for you.

A lot has been said already about Couric's parroting the Republican line that the Abramoff scandal is somehow bipartisan. For someone who showed video of her own colonoscopy on the "Today" show, Couric is surprisingly unable to probe the assholes at the center of the scandal and get at the truth. But Dean gave a firm rebuttal -- a flat mantra of "Not. One. Dime." -- and acquitted himself well.

In fact, Dean's entire appearance looked strong. He stayed on message, rebutting Republican claims and always pivoting to the attack, bringing up their incompetence, their ethical scandals, and their corruption at every chance he got. At one point, Couric claimed that "many people" think the Democrats lack a backbone, and Dean promptly reached through the screen, ripped hers out, and beat her on the head with it.

In all seriousness, nicely played. This should be required viewing for Democratic officials before they're allowed anywhere near a microphone.


Studiodave said...

He does seem logical. This concerns me. Americans will accuse him of being a "thinker."

Otto Man said...

True. The last few elections showed that the combination of fear-mongering and shiny objects works better than thinking.

Thrillhous said...

That was awesome. She went at him on every single question without even listening to his answers.

My inside sources say that Couric is gunning for the CBS night time anchor job. These hardball interviews are probably just auditions.

Tokyo Joe said...

I agree that Dean looked strong and made a very impressive case for dems everywhere. However, I did notice one thing. the question that Couric asked was about "abramoff & associates" giving money to dems. Every time Dean said that a dem didn't recieve a dime he just said "abramoff". Maybe I'm splitting hairs, but it seemed to me that he was purposely making the distintion. So to me he came off as a little weaselly right at the end. At least to me, but I don't trust many politicians at all, rep or dem.

Otto Man said...

Good point, Joe, but I think "Abramoff and associates" refers to his colleagues (the already indicted folks like Scanlon, Safavian, etc.) and not his clients (the Indian tribes).

That's the essential distinction that the GOP is trying to blur. Yes, Abramoff's clients gave money to Dems and Reps alike. But those actions were entirely legal and no different that the lobbying activities of every other lobbyist in Washington.

Abramoff and his "associates" directed illegal funds to Republicans, and Republicans alone. That's what the scandal's about, and (given what we currently know about the scandal) any attempt to spread that blame to the Democrats is a flat-out falsehood.

Tokyo Joe said...

Thanks for the distinction, OM. I wasn't quite sure of it myself. I wish that Dean would have mentioned that in the interview (although I understand the limited time he was dealing with). If he would have said that then I believe he really would have scored a perfect 10 instead of misplacing his landing a little.

S.W. Anderson said...

My understanding of how Republican-occupied Washington works tells me that it's not that hard to connect a conniving big-time operator like Abramoff to everybody — if you're willing to include enough intermediate links.

The thing is, an innocent intermediary (or two or three) destroys any potential chain of evidence that Sum of Money A resulted in Sen. Soandso doing B.

In the example case of Sen. Dorgan, Republicans have tried to claim that because indian tribes that had dealings with Abramoff gave Dorgan money, Abramoff money went to Dorgan. That's nonsensical on its face.

Thrillhous said...

I appreciate the distinction to, OM. I kinda knew what the distinction was, but your wording made it crystal clear.

Speaking of crystal clear, I really liked Dean's 5 points of what the dems stand for.

Otto Man said...

Yeah, I thought he leapt out of the gate pretty well on that one.