Last night, following Obama’s disastrous performance in the Philadelphia debate, I flipped over to MSNBC (only for a second), and saw an undeniably pleased look on Howard Wolfson’s face — like a cat who’d just swallowed a canary (peep, peep, screech, gulp). I knew then that Wolfson would be firing up his team for an early morning conference call. Sure enough, he did. And the full audio of the 10:00 a.m. EST call is below the fold.
First, you have to see the hysterical reaction of in-the-KoolAid-tank-for-Obama David Corn, a “journalist” (except-for-his-Obama-mania) for The Nation. It’s Corn’s original, histrionic variation of “Leave Barack Obama Alone!“:
[L]efty journalist David Corn, sounding somewhat agitated, told Wolfson and Singer, “I don’t understand why you’re making this an issue” and brought up the cases of two Weather Underground criminals who were pardoned by Bill Clinton. “Did Sen. Clinton think that was the wrong thing to do when he pardoned these two terrorists?” Corn asked.
“I am not aware, perhaps you are, of Linda Evans or Susan Rosenberg — of either of them hosting a political event for Sen. Clinton at their homes,” Wolfson answered.
“That’s not what I asked!” Corn interrupted.
“I appreciate your passionately-held feelings on this race and on this issue,” Wolfson continued. [Ah yes, the ironic understatement. Good one, Howard.] “But when you get to ask a question, I get to answer it.” … continued below …
“Fair enough,” Corn said.
“The difference here is that Bill Ayers hosted an event for Sen. Obama when he was running for state senate…This is not somebody that Sen. Obama would just run into on the street. This is somebody who hosted an event for him at his home in a political context. We’re not talking about whether Sen. Obama ran into somebody at an ice cream store in Hyde Park…”
“Bill Ayers is unrepentant of what he did. He is unrepentant about what he did in the 60s and early 70s. That is a difference, of course, with Linda Evans and Susan Rosenberg…If Sen. Obama is not able to answer the questions last night…I think it is absolutely reasonable to ask him for a fuller accounting of why Bill Ayers hosted him at his home for a political event.”
Now, here is the full audio of this morning’s call. It’s always fascinating — if that’s the right word — to listen in on the media’s questions:
P.S. Corn incorrectly said that President Clinton “pardoned” two WU terrorists. 1) President Clinton “commuted” their sentence; he did not pardon either, and 2) Hillary Clinton, as First Lady, had no part in the pardoning process about which we are aware. I believe the process for commutations and pardons begins in the Department of Justice, in an office that sifts through an enormous volume of requests, winnows down that list, and then presents, to each president, a short list of those believed to merit consideration. Those DOJ lists are then reviewed by each president’s aides before the president sees a list. (At least that is my understanding of the process.)
P.P.S. David Corn did remarkable reporting on Valerie Plame Wilson and on the trial of Scooter Libby, and I will always respect him for that work. It’s just that today — and on television recently when I’ve seen him as a commentator — that he seems a bit overwrought about Barack Obama’s candidacy. And I wonder why he is acting that way.