Monday, March 06, 2006

# Posted 9:34 PM by Ariel David Adesnik  

SUNDAY MORNING ROUND-UP: Gen. Peter Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff was on NBC, followed by Jack Kemp & John Edwards. John Murtha was on CBS, followed by Richard Lugar. Finally, Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) and Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA), both of whom chair their respective homeland security committees, were on ABC, followed by Wes Clark.

Before I get to the grades, let me give a shout out to Mark Kilmer of Red State, who is in the habit of providing detailed summaries of the Sunday morning talk shows. (Hat tip: MD) Moreover, in addition to the Big Three, he covers Fox News Sunday and CNN Late Edition. (Although if they did podcasts, I might cover them, too.)

So here goes:
Gen. Pace: B-. Pace did a competent job of saying what he had to say on the Pentagon's behalf. But I think it was a very poor decision to say that flagging public support for the war is a result of bad news coverage. I've criticized that coverage quite often myself. But the bottom line is that Americans just can't get behind a war in which their soldiers have to die one at a time, day after day, for almost three years, without the prospect of a decisive military victory.

Jack Kemp: B. Candid, as befits a former office holder. Kept insisting that the real cause of instability in Iraq is a lack of economic progress. But you don't see the Shi'ites complaining about that, do you?

John Edwards: B-. Did another mea culpa for his pro-war vote, but gave no explanation of why the vote was wrong based on what he knew then. Edwards even said that Clinton administration officials supported his analysis at the time. But he doesn't like how things have turned out.

John Murtha: C. Not a "reality-based" politician. Pull the string in his back and he frantically repeats the same cliches over and over again. How can you argue with a man who insists while answering just one question both that we're stuck in a civil war and that "we've united everybody [in Iraq] against us"? Murtha kept railing off one ridiculous statement after another, but it isn't worth the time to fisk them all.

Richard Lugar: B. Candid, which is unusual for a long time politician. And reasonable, which is unusual, too. But didn't say much.

Susan Collins: B. Straddled the fence. Easily has the most annoying voice I've ever heard on a Sunday talk show.

Duncan Hunter: B-. Will be working with Hillary Clinton to outlaw foreign operation of American ports. I guess Hillary gets a B-, too.

Wes Clark: B-. Gets very worked up about issues on which he has no discernible position.
Not a good week, eh? Or perhaps I've just decided to be stingy after giving out so many high grades last time around? Anyhow, here are the hosts:
Tim Russert: B. When you have the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on your show, you should try to get out some new information about our military effort.

Bob Schieffer: B.

George Stephanopoulos: B+. Tells Clark flat out that he's dodging the question (which he was).
See you in seven.
(1) opinions -- Add your opinion

Reading your synoposis of Murtha, how did he manage a "C"?

Even assuming an "F" requires that you burst a blood vessel and die while arguing that GWB's environmental policies directly caused Hurricane Katrina, how did he not get at least a "D+"?
Post a Comment