Following the conclusion of tonight’s presidential forum, host Chris Matthews immediately began to focus on the pressing issues. He offered an array of trifling analysis that included musings about Sen. John Edwards’ height, Sen. Hillary Clinton’s use of the word “girl,” and Clinton’s Chicago accent. Watch it:
I think this post is helping me see just why I haven't been all that interested in these media guys' take on any of the debates: they don't actually listen to them. For some reason, whenever Democrats (and perhaps Republicans, too) get up on stage and start talking about issues, Chris Matthews et al. don't listen to the substance of what he's saying. Rather, they're just listening for gaffes, for things that can be spun around to create drama, obviously because, according to their logic, candidates angering large sections of the populace or looking stupid attracts more "eyeballs" than candidates talking substance.
Thus when, as with most debates, there were no big gaffes, the press has nothing but the most banal observations, usually calling the debate a draw or calling it for the frontrunner with some vague "they seemed more poised" argument.
To Chris Matthews and Wolf Blitzer and the CNN crowd, the debate apparently sounded like this:
John Edwards: "Blah blah blah, blah blah pretty hair blah blah, blah trial lawyer blah!"
Barack Obama: "Blah blah Hussein blah, 1st black president blah, blah blah I'm not experienced blah."
Hillary Clinton: "Blah blah Giordano's, blah blah blah Polish sausage, blah blah DA BEARS! blah."