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David Brooks: What ‘Clinton Effect’?

September 3, 2012

I happened to tune in to the end of the panel on PBS’ Newshour tonight. Of course, there were Gwen Ifill and Judi Woodruff anchoring, doing their best to steer the conversation toward narratives helpful to Team Obama. In fact, there was some “news” made in an earlier part of the show. Ms. Woodruff talked with Stephanie Cutter, who said that there would be no “surprise” guest speakers at the DNC. Oh yeah, that’s how you get the big ratings, Stephanie. Remind everyone in advance that your party has no imagination.

But back to the panel. The ladies had some help from Mark Shields, too. Near the close of the last segment, Shields cheerily said that former president Bill Clinton’s speech at the convention would be important. He said that it would cause “The Clinton effect.”

The past day or two, expectations for President Obama’s address have been downplayed. Clinton’s speech has been gaining buzz, if Democrats are able to have such a thing.

This finely-tuned machine, the Newshour, was jammed up tonight though. The other panelist was New York Times writer David Brooks.

Brooks’ reply to Shields took off from the phrase “the Clinton effect.” He mentioned the former president’s efforts in the 2010 mid-terms, and in the big unions’ attempts to recall Wisconsin governor Scott Walker.

“If there’s a big ‘Clinton effect,’ we’ve yet to see it,” Brooks said.

Image: H/T Mike Wiswell

2 Comments leave one →
  1. September 8, 2012 2:42 am

    I haven’t watched much TV in years, and before I “quit” I watched PBS almost exclusively. I grew tired of PBS because of their bias. I’m an “independent,” whatever that means, so I crave objective views based on evidence. Looking in on PBS these days the bias is even more evident as is NPR’s. I guess you always have to consider bias and just let it be–it is what it is. Although, PBS doesn’t claim to be free of bias do they? Fair and balanced! 🙂

    • September 8, 2012 10:53 am

      Thanks for your comment, Sean. It’s gratifying that someone with your perspective (and long-time experience watching PBS) got my point.

      I think you’ve got it right– consider that there’s always going to be some bias. And now that you mention it, PBS doesn’t make that claim. haha

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