Friday, November 10, 2006
Woodward: James Carville, The Democrats' Benedict Arnold
Y'all may have heard that James Carville has told some of his favorite media buddies that he wants to dump Howard Dean as DNC Chair and replace him with -- wait for it -- the flaccid, spineless, gormless, easily-led Harold Ford. Now, why would Carville -- who earned a reputation as a smart political operator when his War Room and Rapid-Response teams helped get Bill Clinton into the White House -- advocate such a brain-dead move? Well, to answer that, you'd also have to look at another odd maneuver of Carville's, as detailed by Bob Woodward in his new book State of Denial (hat tip to M. J. Rosenberg for spotting this, and to DKos diarist Pontificator for bringing it to the attention of the Kossacks):
On page 344, Woodward describes the doings at the White House in the early morning hours of Wednesday, the day after the '04 election. Apparently, Kerry had decided not to concede. There were 250,000 outstanding ballots in Ohio. So Kerry decides to fight. In fact, he considers going to Ohio to camp out with his voters until there is a recount. This is the last thing the White House needs, especially after Florida 2000. So what happened? James Carville gets on the phone with his wife, Mary Matalin, who is at the White House with Bush. "Carville told her he had some inside news. The Kerry campaign was going to challenge the provisional ballots in Ohio -- perhaps up to 250,000 of them. 'I don't agree with it, Carville said. I'm just telling you that's what they're talking about.' "Matalin went to Cheney to report...You better tell the President Cheney told her." Matalin does, advising Bush that "somebody in authority needed to get in touch with J. Kenneth Blackwell, the Republican Secretary of State in Ohio who would be in charge of any challenge to the provisional votes." An SOS goes out to Blackwell. The rest is history.Indeed. Do note that Mary Matalin is nearly a decade younger than her husband. Do note that Peggy Shippen was nearly two decades younger than her husband. UPDATE: Aquaria reminds us that Ronald Reagan was an FDR Democrat until he met the rabidly Republican -- and decade-younger -- Nancy Davis.
But I do think James Carville has a conflict of interest that he should have dealt with long ago.
Nope. But insecure middle-aged and elderly males are prone to emotional manipulation by people with political agendas. John Andre sent his former fiancée, Peggy Shippen, off to seduce Benedict Arnold. Don't know if Nancy Davis went after up-and-coming actor Reagan on her own or at the California GOP's behest; I do kinda suspect that one of the reasons Matalin wed Carville was on the "Keep your friends close and your enemies closer" principle.
To thank Howard Dean for his vision of the 50 state strategy send him a birthday card with a check to the DNC for whatever amount you can afford and .50 tacked on to the end. If we start sending today they'll start arriving next week leading up to his birthday on 11/17.
More blogs about politics.