Tim Russert may think that he keeps his political leanings well hidden (like, say, his penchant for pins under his lapel), but his questioning of presidential contenders Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama during this 20th Democratic debate certainly was less than subtle. Despite the fact the American people (and Iraqi people and American troops, come to that) overwhelmingly support a withdrawal from Iraq, Timmeh can't help but frame his question as if the White House press office wrote it themselves.
RUSSERT: I want to ask you both a question then, if this scenario plays out, and the Americans get out, in totality, and al Qaeda resurges and Iraq goes to hell, do you hold the right, in your mind as the American president, to reinvade, to go back into Iraq to stabilize it?
CLINTON: You know, Tim, you ask a lot of hypotheticals. And I believe that…
RUSSERT: This is, this is reality…
CLINTON: Well, it isn’t reality. You’re making lots of different hypothetical assessments. I believe that it is in America’s interests and in the interest of the Iraqis for us to have an orderly withdrawal.
Nice, Timmeh. I like the framing of "oh, so you'll get out of Iraq, but will you be responsible for the hell unleashed by that? Will you go back in and re-invade to secure it?" An attempt to perhaps vindicate your buddy Bush, perhaps?
Russert's behavior throughout the debate was rather bizarre. He interrupted Clinton constantly and made ridiculously offensive insinuations of anti-Semitism against Obama on the fallacious logic of transitive relationships. (Very reminiscent of how he asked Obama his opinion of an anti-Bush statement made by Harry Belafonte, for no other reason than the shared color of their skin) How considerate of him to help out the GOP by starting his own Republican oppo whisper campaigns against the Democratic candidate right there in the middle of the debate.
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