April 29, 2007

Paul Begala: David Broder Is a Gasbag

Filed under: Uncategorized — Volt @ 3:08 pm

Paul Begala, The Huffington Post, April 29, 2007

One of the few regrets I have in life is that I allowed Ann Devroy of the Washington Post to talk me into apologizing for calling David Broder “a gasbag” in 1995. My admiration for Devroy trumped my contempt for Broder. Ann, sadly, is gone, but Broder remains. She was everything Broder is not: fearless, intellectually honest, scrupulously fair, and suspicious of power.

Broder, of course, is a gasbag. The Hindenburg of pundits. But my respect for Ann knew no bounds, and she thought I was being unfair. In retrospect I was being unfair. To gasbags.

Mr. Broder has been foaming at the mouth these days. A man generally given to soporific prose, Broder has been downright venomous lately. And what has put the Benzedrine in Mr. Broder’s Ovaltine? Not the fact that President Bush continues to lie about “progress” in the war in Iraq. Or that Dick Cheney continues to lie about pre-invasion links between al Qaeda and Iraq. Or that the Bush Administration has neglected our wounded warriors, ignored the victims of Katrina, potentially obstructed justice by firing US Attorneys who were pursuing GOP wrongdoing. Not even that the Bush Administration lied to the families of Pat Tillman and Jessica Lynch, cynically using their blood to distract from their own incompetence and dishonesty.

No, none of this raises Dean Broder’s hackles.

He reserves his vitriol for Harry Reid.

Why Reid? Because Reid has been one of the few politicians with the courage to speak the plain, unvarnished truth to power, and the hallmark of Mr. Broder’s career has been to suck up to power. Reid calls Bush a liar. Broder can’t handle the truth.

In a radio interview Monday, Broder blasted Reid, calling him “bumbling,” saying he’s an embarrassment, and breaking the news that, “at some point down the road the Democrats are gonna have to have a little caucus and decide how much further they want to carry Harry Reid.”

Really? And on what did the self-styled dean of the Washington press corps, base this bombshell? Nothing. Zip. Zilch. Nada. Broder just made it up. That’s not journalism, it’s bloviating – aka Broderizing. In fact, real reporters on Capitol Hill chased down the Broder charge, actually interviewing Democratic senators and their staffs. They found universal support for Reid.

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