Morning reporter Dan learns a lot about the superegos of the Today show crew. . . about those 377 tons of weapons? Notsomuch.
The morning shows are full of adorable moppets in Halloween costumes -- not to mention Katie, Matt, Al, and Ann -- so political news gets short shrift this Friday. Kerry's finally ditching that fucking barn jacket and heading to sunny Florida; Bush hits New Hampshire and Ohio; Cheney and Gore are both headed to suddenly-in-play Hawaii. News peg: KSTP video shows US soldiers inspecting munitions at Al-Qaqaa in April 2003. Hot topic: FBI broadens Halliburton investigation. Unsurprising revelation: Bill Clinton is a better husband when high.
7:07 NBC. Today:
Matt Lauer attempts to have a normal human conversation with Paul Bremer, former US Administrator in Iraq. Lauer plays the KSTP video. Bremer says, "We don't know that the facts are. It's irresponsible for Senator Kerry to use this in the campaign." Lauer points out that the video seems to show the weapons present after US troops arrive in Al-Qaqaa. Bremer claims that the fact that we never caught anyone stealing them means that no one could have stolen them. Why isn't that reassuring? "There was a month when Saddam could've moved those explosives out," Bremer adds. Lauer politely notes that obviously he didn't, because there the explosives are in the middle of April, right there on the TV.
"It's premature and irresponsible to draw conclusions," says Bremer. "This story has been progressively discredited every day this week." Discredited? By video that may well prove the story to be accurate? Matt Lauer is a far more patient man than me, because rather than pound his head through the Today show coffee table, he moves on.
Bremer tosses in some "nuisance" language re Kerry. Lauer reads back a statement of Bremer's from July 2003, saying they had plenty of troops, and compares it to his statement this summer that more troops had been needed. Which one is right? "Well, they're both right," says Bremer. And anyways, "You're getting distracted. I think it was plausible that the munitions were gone before we even got there."
7:13 CBS. The Early Show:
Hannah Storm interviews John Edwards. Edwards jumps all over the Halliburton investigation, claiming it demonstrates the "long pattern of favoritism that this administration shows to its friends." Hannah lobs it up there by asking if Edwards can guarantee Kerry won't raise taxes on the middle class; Edwards says yes. Hannah fails to ask how, then, the Kerry administration would pay for a single goddamn thing.
7:17 FNC. Fox & Friends:
Larry Sabato, UVa: All those undecideds could resolve their dilemma by simply not voting. Creepy Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling's in New Hampshire stumping for the President; unlike Springsteen, "at least Schilling's got currency today."
7:25 FNC. Fox & Friends:
Governor Ed Rendell (D-PA): Security should be Bush's long suit, but Kerry is chipping away. Rendell's going to the court to ask for a one-week extension for absentee voting in PA.
7:31 ABC. Good Morning America:
Hillary Rodham Clinton interviewed by Diane Sawyer. HRC uses the following words to describe Bill as he came out of surgery: peaceful, happy, blissful. Does not use the following words: chatty, flirty, priapic. Sighs as she recalls how he held her hand as he awoke. Bill better have a staffer check his morning granola; Hillary talks like a wife who wishes her husband was under anesthesia every day.
7:52 FNC. Fox & Friends:
Michael Reagan: Kids help in a campaign because wherever you go, you get the candidate's name in the paper.
Steve Doocy: Bush's campaign in positive! Kerry's campaign is negative and totally won't work!
Reagan: You're so right!
8:09 CNN. American Morning:
Governor Ed Rendell (D-PA), again: CNN could possibly have replayed a videotape of Rendell's appearance on FNC half an hour ago, so little does this interview differ from the last.
8:12 CBS. The Early Show:
Hannah Storm and John Edwards, Part II: The point of those 10,000 lawyers the Dems are delivering to swing states is not to bring things to court, but to make sure people get to vote before the polls close. Edwards is making his poor children dress up for Halloween and trick or treat on the campaign trail. I hope he dresses them up as Bush and Cheney and then, mugging for the camera, engages in some playful "child abuse."
8:26 FNC. Fox & Friends:
John Thune, Republican candidate for Senate in South Dakota: The Senate doesn't work and Tom Daschle is the "chief obstructionist." The fact that the Democrats have to send so much money to South Dakota makes him feel like he's doing our job.
8:30 NBC. Today:
Special Bonus Halloween Report: Ann Curry dresses up as Tina Turner and kind of looks hot as hell. Katie Couric dresses as Donald Trump, gets to say "You're fired!" to the actual Donald. Al Roker makes a fantastic Oprah, even getting the voice right.
Matt Lauer dresses as Paris Hilton and looks mortified. "I can't believe I did this in front of Trump," he moans.
8:47 FNC. Fox & Friends:
Brenda Buttner, "Bulls and Bears" host: Wall Street likes Bush, but won't panic if Kerry wins, because a Democratic President and Republican Congress means tasty, tasty gridlock. Wall Street loves the status quo.
8:52 FNC. Fox & Friends:
Condi Rice, Part II. Denies she has been campaigning, says her appearances are part of making the administration accessible to the American people. Refuses to say she will quit, but does note that she would leave her position in a second if offered the post of NFL Commissioner. If things in Iraq keep going poorly,
Paul Tagliabue might find himself in Gitmo to make room for Condi.
Big day for the Democrats. As bad as ever at hammering on message, but with news this bad for Republicans, it hardly matters. Message of the day: There stands Bremer, standing like a stone wall!