The Corner

Moderating the Moderators

An e-mail from a former Hill Guy:

One way our people ought to start standing up to the various debate moderators is to start simply answering their rather biased questions with a repeated stock phrase which clearly identifies who they are.

So, for example, when a wacky Tim Russert question pops up, the answer should always start: “Well, Tim, I understand why you phrased your question that way, as a former top aide to Mario Cuomo, but let me tell you…” Same trope with Brian Williams: “Brian, I understand why you’d put it that way, given your previous speechwriting work for Jimmy Carter, but here’s the way to look at it…” Stephanopolous: “George, we all know your work for Bill Clinton, so you may look at it that way, but let me tell you…”

No need to be heated or confrontational in laying their backgrounds on the table, just gently and firmly remind viewers and colleagues of who these people really are. Might get the New York Times and the liberals in a twitter, but would force the media ethicists and howard kurtzes to cover the controversy and maybe introduce just a little shame into the systems of these jokers…and when russert defends himself by claiming he’s tough on democrats, look at how he took on Hillary last fall on the immigration issue, then people can point out that Moynihan didn’t want her taking his seat anyway, so doesn’t it make sense he’d go after her?…

N.B. Brian Williams was only a Carter intern.

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